Delhi, Kerala lab reports on Maggi accurate: FSSAI CEO

New Delhi, (IANS) The food safety reports, on the basis of which Maggi instant noodles have been banned by the Delhi and Kerala governments are accurate, said FSSAI CEO Yudhvir Singh Malik on Thursday.

“The reports from Delhi and Kerala are absolutely authentic,” Malik told IANS.

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) CEO also noted that reports from one of the states were not correct.

“We have received reports from Goa which were found to be inappropriate. Also, two other states have sent us reports… they have been requested to send us proper reports again, this might take two-three days more,” Malik added.

The states which have been asked to collect fresh samples and prepare new laboratory reports are Gujarat and Uttarakhand.

A day after the Delhi government banned Maggi for 15 days, the food safety commissioners of all states and union territories on Thursday called a meeting of the Central Advisory Committee (CAC) of FSSAI to discuss the issue of excessive lead and other harmful ingredients in the noodles.

Soon after the meeting, CAC member Pradeep Chordia told IANS that the “issue should be tackled in a more scientific way”.

“Factories should be audited in whole rather than small sample tests. This practice of banning companies based on smaller samples would harm the food industry. After auditing the companies with wider range of samples, if something is found, then action should be taken against them,” he said.

About the meeting, Chordia told IANS that it “discussed food laws and other aspects of the food act apart from the issue of the ban on Maggi noodles”.

Stressing on the need for fair practices in the food industry, he said: “Other brands of noodles are also being brought under scrutiny. Processed food now is a part of life… (we) cannot ignore it. But mislabelling and false claims have been happening from the food industry. The food industry should also play a fair game.”

Meanwhile, FSSAI officials told IANS that the authority has not taken any decision so far on the issue.

The Delhi government had on Wednesday imposed a fortnight-long ban on Maggi, after which it would review the product again, while the Kerala government had ordered a pullout of Maggi noodles from government-run outlets. A country-wide scrutiny of the product for high content of lead and mono-sodium glutamate or MSG, a taste enhancer, has been triggered after the controversy.

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