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FSSAI implemented best-practice policy to reduce trans fats consumption

‘FSSAI implemented best-practice policy to reduce trans fats consumption’. Image Source: IANS News

New Delhi, Aug 12 : Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare S.P. Singh Baghel on Friday said the Food Safety Standard Authority of India (FSSAI) has implemented best-practice policy as specified by World Health Organisation (WHO) to gradually reduce the trans fats consumption in India.

The Minister said this in a written reply in Lok Sabha in response to a query whether the government has implemented the best practices/policies to eliminate trans fats in the country following specific criteria established by WHO to limit industrially produced trans fats.

“FSSAI has notified the Food Safety and Standards (Prohibition and Restrictions on Sales) Second Amendment Regulations, 2021 on February 2,2020 and Food Safety and Standards (Food Products Standards and Food Additives) Tenth Amendment Regulations, 2020 on December 29, 2020 to reduce the maximum limit of industrial trans fatty acids to not more than two per cent by weight in edible oils, fats and food products in which edible oils and fats are used as an ingredient. These amendments came into effect from January 1, 2022,” he said.

In response to another question, Baghel said: “As reported by ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research), industrially produced trans fat are commonly found in the packaged foods, baked goods, cooking oil and spreads. Several epidemiological studies have documented that high intake of trans fatty acids increases the risk of coronary heart disease. Approximately 540,000 deaths each year are estimated to be attributed to intake of industrially produced trans-fatty acids.

“High trans fat intake may increase the risk of death from any cause by 34 per cent, coronary heart disease deaths by 28 per cent,” the Minister said.

According to the WHO, 4.6 per cent of coronary heart disease deaths in India may be related to trans fatty acid intake, he said.

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