Proprietary Food and the New Law
What does it mean for health and nutrition claims?
In 2016, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) made an amendment in the existing regulations related to ‘proprietary food'. The changes relate to classification, manufacture and marketing of proprietary food. Before we try to understand what these changes are and what are the implications thereof for manufacturers and consumers, let's get our notions about proprietary food in place.
Proprietary food is non-standardised food – that is, food that has not been standardised under Food Safety and Standards (Food Products Standards and Food Additives) Regulations, 2016. Such food may contain primary ingredients and some generic additives. An example is custard powder that contains starch, dextrose, flavour and colour.
As a corollary, therefore, one can comprehend standardised food as being defined under FSSAI Regulations. Breads, biscuits, fruit drinks, sauces, jams and carbonated water are all examples of proprietary food. A food business operator (FBO) who has license can manufacture these products and sell them by complying with the set standards for a specific food item.
Hitherto, proprietary food was defined as any food item that was not standardised under Food Safety and Standards (Food Products Standards and Food Additives) Regulations, 2011. Now it is defined as ‘an article of food that has not been standardised under the Food Safety and Standards (Food Products Standards and Food Additives) Regulations, 2016. Proprietary foods now include foods that have not been standardised but will NOT include: a) novel foods, b) foods for special dietary uses, c) foods for special medical purposes, d) functional foods, e) nutraceuticals, f) health supplements, and g) any