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Health Star Rating System of FSSAI for Packaged Food

Context:

Recently, 40 global health experts claimed that the “health star rating” system that the Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) plans to adopt to help consumers reduce their intake of unhealthy foods is “not evidence-based” and has failed to alter buyer behavior.

Relevance:

GS III- Food Processing & Related Industries In India

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. What is the Health Star Rating System?
  2. What is FoPL?

What is the Health Star Rating System?

  • In February, the FSSAI decided to adopt the “health-star rating system”, which gives a product 1/2 a star to 5 stars, in its draft regulations for front of package labelling (FOPL).
  • The HSR format assigns a rating to a packaged food item based on its salt, sugar, and fat content, which is printed on the front of the package.
  • The HSR’s fundamental principle is that good components like fruits and nuts can be used to offset bad nutrients like calories, saturated fat, total sugar, and sodium when determining a product’s star rating.
  • The decision was based on the findings of an IIM-Ahmedabad research commissioned by the regulator in September 2021.

What is FoPL?

  • The FoP labelling system has long been regarded as one of the greatest methods for encouraging customers to choose healthy food choices around the world.
  • It works in the same manner as graphics on cigarette packs deter people from smoking.
  • Because India is undergoing a dietary transformation, with individuals increasingly consuming more processed and ultra-processed goods, as well as a rising market, FoP labelling is required.
  • It will be useful in the fight against rising obesity and a variety of non-communicable diseases.
  • FoP labels are nutrition labelling systems that are shown on the front of food packaging in the primary field of view and give concise, frequently graphic information on the nutrient content or nutritional quality of items, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
  • To go along with the more thorough nutrient statements seen on the back of food packages.
  • “FoP labelling is aimed to assist in deciphering nutrient declarations,” according to the Codex Alimentarius Commission.

-Source: The Hindu

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November 2022
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