First onus on food recall lies with business operator

New Delhi, Aug 11 (IANS) The first responsibility for recall of food has been cast upon the food business operator, parliament was told on Tuesday.

“Lack of food recall policy is not accountable for non-conformity on food safety standards. As a matter of fact, the first responsibility for recall of food has been cast upon the food business operator,” Minister of State for Food Processing Industries Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti told the Lok Sabha in a written reply.

“As per the international practices, a food recall is an action taken to remove the food which is unsafe from the entire food supply chain from the manufacturer to the consumer. However, the food recall procedures may vary from country to country,” she added.

The minister’s comment came at a time when an international company had to recall its noodle brand in India as laboratory tests showed excess level of lead in their products.

According to Section 28 (1) of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006: “If a food business operator considers or has reasons to believe that a food which he has processed, manufactured or distributed is not in compliance with this Act, or the rules or regulations, made there under, he shall immediately initiate procedures to withdraw the food in question from the market and consumers indicating reasons for its withdrawal and inform the competent authorities thereof.”

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