In April 2016 the FSSAI had issued a notification stating that the FSSAI was adopting some Codex Standards with immediate effect. Since these important Codex Standards have been incorporated into FSSAI we are revisiting them for our readers. They are also of particular relevance to FBOs dealing with the products mentioned below, especially as these standards have already been implemented and operationalized and FBOs need to comply with them. Here the codex standards for the food products have been dealt with briefly where only some points have been highlighted.
Cheese in Brine has been incorporated into Dairy Products and Analogues
Cheeses in Brine are semi-hard to soft ripened cheeses in conformity with white to yellowish colour and a compact texture suitable for slicing
Permitted ingredients are
- Starter cultures of harmless lactic acid and/or flavour producing bacteria and
- cultures of other harmless micro-organisms
- Safe and suitable enzymes
- Sodium chloride
- Potable water
- Herbs and spices where part of the identity of the Cheese in Brine.
Composition Soft Semi-hard
Minimum fat in dry matter, % 40 40
Minimum dry matter, % 40 52
The following standards have been incorporated into the regulation category dealing with Fruit and Vegetable products
This standard applies to dried fruits of Armeniaca vulgaria Lam. (Prunus armeniaca L.) conveniently treated and processed, which are offered for direct consumption. It also applies to dried apricots packaged in bulk and intended to be packaged again in containers for consumption or for direct sale to consumers. Dried apricots types are
- Whole with bone.
- Whole, boneless.
- Whole, boneless and stuffed with edible materials.
- Pieces – parts of healthy and ripe apricots of characteristic colour of irregular shape, size and thickness and excluding whole fruits.
- Kamaradin – dried pulp or apricot pulp prepared in the form of leaf or leaflets.
The apricots are divided according to pieces per kg of very small, little ones, medium, big and large sizes. Each type has a different number of apricots in one Kg.
Canned Tropical Food Salad: the contents will consist of all basic fruits and any of the optional fruits according to the proportions provided
Basic Fruit Minimum Maximum
Pineapple 45% 65%
Papaya or Mango
(singly or in combination) 25% 50%
Banana 5% 20%
Litchi 5% 20%
Melon 5% 20%
Longan 5% 20%
Guava 5% 20%
Canned Chestnut and Chestnut Puree,
Canned chestnuts may be packed in the following styles
- Whole chestnuts which are pellicled or unpellicled and/or trimmed into a practical tetrahedron.
- Broken – small pieces which may not be uniform in size and/or shape.
Canned Chestnut Puree
Sweetened – with added sugars listed in not less than 12 percent total soluble solids
Unsweetened – without added sugars; not less than 10 percent total soluble solids
When nutritive sweeteners are added to water, the liquid media shall be classified on the basis of the cut-out strength as follows
Slightly sweetened water } – Not less than 10ºBrix
Water slightly sweetened } – but less than 14ºBrix
Extra light syrup }
Light syrup – Not less than 14ºBrix but less than 18ºBrix
Heavy syrup – Not less than 18ºBrix but less than 22ºBrix
Extra Heavy syrup – Not less than 22ºBrix
Date puree may be made from a single variety of dates or a blend of several varieties. The varieties must be specified on the label
Moisture content shall not exceed 20%
Mineral matter content shall not exceed 1 gram per kilogram
Total ash content shall not exceed 1.2%
Acid insoluble ash content shall not exceed 0.1%
Harissa (Red Hot Pepper Paste)
“Harissa” is the preserved pulp of fresh red hot pepper, of the Capsicum annuum variety, concentrated and with the composition provided for in Section 3 and preserved using thermal treatment only.
Total acidity, expressed as citric acid not to exceed 3.6% of total dry residues
Dry extract not less than 14% of total soluble solids (excluding salt)
The percentage of added salt shall not exceed 1.5% of dry weight basis.
The percentage of acid insoluable ash shall not exceed 0.15% of the total weight of dry extract.
Fermented Soyabean Paste
Boiled or steamed soybeans, or the mixture of boiled or steamed soybeans and grains, are fermented with naturally occurring or cultivated microorganisms. They can be mixed with salt or brine and others.
The limits for total nitrogen, amino nitrogen and moisture have been provided for two types of soyabean paste
- Fermented soybean paste manufactured with soybean only
- Fermented soybean paste manufactured with soybean and grains
Quick Frozen French Fried Potatoes,
Quick frozen French fried potatoes are prepared from tubers of the species Solanum tuberosum L. and offered for direct consumption without further processing except for repacking if required.
The quick freezing process will be complete only when the product temperature has reached -18ºC (0ºF) at the thermal centre after thermal stabilization.
- Straight cut
- Crinkle cut
Cross section of frozen peas shall be identified by the following measures
Designation Dimension in mm across the largest cut surface
Shoestring 5 – 8
Medium 8 – 12
Thick cut 12 – 16
Extra-large greater than 16
Moisture – the maximum moisture content of the whole product in the styles shoestring, medium and thick cut shall be 76% m/m; and in extra-large and other styles 78% m/m.
The fat or oil extracted from the product shall have a free fatty acid content of not more than 1.5% m/m measured as oleic acid or an equivalent fatty acid value based on the predominant fatty acid in the fat or oil.
Gari (products of cassava tubers)
Gari is the finished product obtained by artisanal or industrial processing of cassava tubers (Manihot esculenta Crantz). The processing consists of peeling, washing and grating of the tubers, followed by fermentation, pressing, fragmentation, granulation, drying if necessary, sifting and suitable heat treatment. Gari is presented as flour of variable granule size.
- Moisture content 12.0% m/m max
- Total hydrocyanic acid content shall not exceed 2 mg/kg determined as free hydrocyanic acid.
Edible Cassava flour
Definition of the product
Edible cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) flour is the product prepared from dried cassava chips or paste by a pounding, grinding or milling process, followed by sifting to separate the fibre from the flour.
Quality factors – Moisture content 13% m/m max
This standard applies to the fruit of commercial varieties of lucuma grown from the Pouteria lucuma (R. y P.) species, of the Sapotaceae family, to be supplied fresh to the consumer, after preparation and packaging. Lucuma for industrial processing are excluded. Lucama is divided into classes.
Vegetable Protein products,
Aqueous Coconut products,
Coconut milk and coconut cream products are prepared by
- using a significant amount of separated, whole, disintegrated, macerated or comminuted fresh endosperm (kernel) of coconut palm (Cocos nucifera L.) and expelled, where most filterable fibres and residues are excluded, with or without coconut water, and/or with additional water
- reconstituting coconut cream powder with potable water
- dispersing finely comminuted dehydrated coconut endosperm with potable water
Light Coconut Milk
Coconut Cream Concentrate
Tempe is a compact, white, cake-shaped product made from husked and boiled soybeans that are fermented in a solid state with Rhizopus spp. Standards are applicable to tempe that has undergone freezing only.
Moisture content 65% w / w max
Protein content 15% w / w min
Lipid content 7% w / w min
Crude fibre 2.5% w / w max
Foods that have been adopted into regulations dealing with Cereals and cereal products are
Pearl Millet Flour
This standard applies to flour destined for direct human consumption which is obtained from pearl millet Pennisetum americanum L., Senegalese varieties “souna” and “sanio”
Quality factors – Moisture content 13.0% m/m max
Sorghum flour is the product obtained from grains of Sorghum bicolour (L.) Moench through a process of industrial milling during which the seed coat is removed and the germ is removed to a large extent and the endosperm is comminuted to a suitable degree of fineness
Quality factors – Moisture content 15.0% m/m max.
Tanin content of sorghum flour shall not exceed 0.3% on a dry matter basis.
Durum Wheat Semolina and Durum Wheat flour
This standard applies to durum wheat semolina, including whole durum wheat semolina and durum wheat flour for direct human consumption prepared from durum wheat (Triticum durum Desf.) which are pre-packaged ready for sale to the consumer or destined for use in other food products.
Quality factors – Moisture content 14.5% m/m max
This standard applies to couscous, i.e. the product prepared from durum wheat semolina (Triticum durum) the elements of which are bound by adding potable water and which has undergone physical treatment such as cooking and drying
Quality factors – Moisture content of couscous shall not exceed 13.5
Degermed Maize, (corn) Meal & Maize (corn) grits
Degermed maize (corn) meal is the food prepared from fully mature, sound, degermed kernels of maize (corn), Zea mays L. In its preparation, coarse particles of the ground maize kernel may be separated, reground and recombined with bran and germ from which they were separated.
Degermed maize (corn) grits is the food prepared from fully mature, sound, degermed, kernels of maize (corn), Zea mays L. in which the grain is comminuted to a suitable degree of fineness and from which bran and germ are almost completely removed.
Quality factors – Moisture content 15.0% m/m max
Instant Noodle is a product prepared from wheat flour and/or rice flour and/or other flours and/or starches as the main ingredient, with or without the addition of other ingredients.
- Non-fried noodles
- Fried noodles
Analytical Requirement for Noodle Block (Noodle Excluding Seasonings)
- Moisture Content
Maximum of 10% for fried noodles
Maximum of 14% for non-fried noodles
- Acid value: maximum of 2 mg KOH/g oil (applicable only to fried noodles)
Edible Sago flour
Edible Sago flour is the product prepared from the pith or soft core of palm tree be like sago palm (Metroxylon sp.) by a mechanical treatment (pounding, grinding, milling) followed by soaking and settling, then drying.
Moisture content 13% m/m max
Ash Inorganic extraneous matter 0.5% m/m max
Acidity (mg KOH/100 g) 220 max
Starch content 65% m/m min
Crude fibre 0.1% m/m max
Particle size not less than 95% flour shall pass through a 100 mesh sieve
Colour from white to light-brown
Wheat Protein Products (WPP) covered by this standard are food products produced by separation from wheat or wheat flour of certain non-protein constituents (starch, other carbohydrates).
- Vital wheat gluten is characterized by its property of high viscoelasticity as hydrated.
- Devitalized wheat gluten is characterized by its reduced property of viscoelasticity as hydrated due to denaturation.
- Solubilized wheat proteins are characterized by their reduced property of viscoelasticity as hydrated due to partial hydrolysis of wheat gluten.
Soy protein products
Soy Protein Products (SPP) covered by this standard are food products produced by the reduction or removal from soybeans of certain of the major non-protein constituents (water, oil, carbohydrates) in a manner to achieve a protein (N x 6.25) content of:
- in the case of soy protein flour (SPF) 50% or more and less than 65%;
- in the case of soy protein concentrate (SPC) 65% or more and less than 90%;
- in the case of soy protein isolate (SPI) 90% or more.
The protein content is calculated on a dry weight basis excluding added vitamins, minerals, amino acids and food additives.
Under the category of Fish and Fish products the following fish products have been adopted,
Quick Frozen Fish Sticks (Fish fingers)
Quick frozen fish sticks (fish fingers) and fish portions cut from quick frozen fish flesh blocks, or formed from fish flesh, and to natural fish fillets, breaded or batter coatings, singly or in combination, raw or partially cooked and offered for direct human consumption without further industrial processing.
The product is prepared from fish eggs of sturgeon fishes belonging to the Acipenseridae family (four genera Acipenser, Huso, Pseudoscaphirhynchus and Scaphirhynchus and hybrid species of these genera).
The product is prepared by mixing fish with salt and is fermented in covered containers or tanks. Generally, the fermentation process takes not less than 6 months
- Total nitrogen content: not less than 10 g/l. Competent authorities may also specify a lower level of total nitrogen if it is the preference of that country.
- Amino acid nitrogen content: not less than 40% of total nitrogen content.
- pH: between 5.0 – 6.5 typical for a traditional product but not lower than 4.5 if ingredients are used to assist fermentation.
- salt: not less than 200g/l, calculated as NaCl
Live and Raw Bivalve Molluses,
Fresh and quick frozen raw scallop products
- Scallop Meat and Roe-on Scallop Meat: The product shall be prepared from sound and wholesome scallops which are of a quality suitable to be sold fresh for direct human consumption.
- Quick Frozen Scallop meat, or Quick Frozen Roe-on Scallop Meat with Added Water and/or Solution of Water and Phosphates. The product shall be prepared from sound and wholesome scallops which are of a quality suitable to be sold quick frozen for direct human consumption. Added water and/or solution of water and phosphates and salt are permitted to the extent that the water uptake is accurately measured and labelled and their use is acceptable in accordance with the law or custom of the country in which the product is sold.
- If glazed, the water used for glazing or for preparing glazing solutions shall be potable water or clean water
Category under ‘Other Food Products and ingredients’
Cocoa (Cacao) Mass or Cocoa/Chocolate Liquor is the product obtained from cocoa nib, which is obtained from cocoa beans of merchantable quality.
Cocoa Cake is the product obtained by partial or complete removal of fat from cocoa nib or cocoa mass.
Cocoa Shell and Germ in Cocoa Mass (Cocoa/Chocolate Liquor)
- not more than 5% m/m calculated on the fat-free dry matter
- not more than 1.75% calculated on an alkali free basis (for Cocoa Shell only)
Cocoa Butter – 47-60% m/m
Cocoa Shell in Germ Cocoa Cake
- not more than 5% m/m calculated on the fat-free dry matter
- not more than 4.5% calculated on an alkali free basis (for Cocoa Shell only)
Cocoa butter is the fat obtained from cocoa beans with the following characteristics:
Free fatty acid content
(expressed as oleic acid) – not more than 1.75% m/m
Unsaponifiable matter – not more than 0.7% m/m, except in the case of press cocoa butter which shall not be more than 0.35% m/m
Cocoa Powder and Dry mixtures of cocoa and sugars
This standard applies to cocoa powders (cocoas) and dry mixtures of cocoa and sugars intended for direct consumption. “Cocoa Powder” and “Fat-reduced Cocoa Powder” and “Highly Fat-reduced Cocoa Powder” are the products obtained from cocoa cake (Cf. Standard for Cocoa (Cacao) Mass (Cocoa/Chocolate Liquor) and Cocoa Cake) transformed into powder.
Moisture Content Not more than 7% m/m
Edible Fats and Oils (not covered by individual standards) will be adopted into Fats, Oils and Fat Emulsion
Edible fats and oils are foodstuffs composed of glycerides of fatty acids. They are of vegetable, animal or marine origin. They may contain small amounts of other lipids such as phosphatides, of unsaponifiable constituents and of free fatty acids naturally present in the fat or oil. Fats of animal origin must be produced from animals in good health at the time of slaughter and be fit for human consumption.
Virgin fats and oils are edible vegetable fats and oils obtained, without altering the nature of the oil, by mechanical procedures, e.g. expelling or pressing, and the application of heat only. They may be purified by washing with water, settling, filtering and centrifuging only.
Cold pressed fats and oils are edible vegetable fats and oils obtained, without altering the oil, by mechanical procedures, e.g. expelling or pressing, without the application of heat. They may have been purified by washing with water, settling, filtering and centrifuging only.
List of Codex Standards which were adopted by FSSAI as per notification dated April 26, 2016:
- Codex Standard 174-1989: CODEX GENERAL STANDARD FOR VEGETABLE PROTEIN PRODUCTS (VPP)
- CODEX STAN 240-2003: CODEX STANDARD FOR AQUEOUS COCONUT PRODUCTS
- CODEX STAN 141-1983: STANDARD FOR COCOA (CACAO) MASS (COCOA/CHOCOLATE LIQUOR) AND COCOA CAKE
- Codex Standard 176-1989: CODEX STANDARD FOR EDIBLE CASSAVA FLOUR
- CODEX STAN 302-2011: STANDARD FOR FISH SAUCE
- CODEX STAN 305R – 2011: CODEX REGIONAL STANDARD FOR LUCUMA
- CODEX STAN 170-1989: STANDARD FOR PEARL MILLET FLOUR
- CODEX STAN 173-1989: STANDARD FOR SORGHUM FLOUR
- CODEX STAN 163-1987, Rev. 1-2001: CODEX STANDARD FOR WHEAT PROTEIN PRODUCTS INCLUDING WHEAT GLUTEN
- CODEX STAN 308R-2011: REGIONAL STANDARD FOR HARISSA (RED HOT PEPPER PASTE)
- CODEX STAN 145-1985: STANDARD FOR CANNED CHESTNUTS AND CANNED CHESTNUT PUREE
- CODEX STAN 99-1981: CODEX STANDARD FOR CANNED TROPICAL FRUIT SALAD
- CODEX STAN 208-1999: CODEX GROUP STANDARD FOR CHEESES IN BRINE
- CODEX STAN 86-1981, Rev.1-2001: CODEX STANDARD FOR COCOA BUTTER
- CODEX STAN 202-1995: CODEX STANDARD FOR COUSCOUS
- CODEX STAN 151-1989: CODEX STANDARD FOR GARI
- CODEX STAN 314R-2013: REGIONAL STANDARD FOR DATE PASTE (NEAR EAST)
- CODEX STAN 155-1985: STANDARD FOR DEGERMED MAIZE (CORN) MEAL AND MAIZE (CORN) GRITS
- CODEX STAN 130-1981: NORMA PARA LOS ALBARICOQUES SECOS
- CODEX STAN 19-1981: STANDARD FOR EDIBLE FATS AND OILS NOT COVERED BY INDIVIDUAL STANDARDS
- CODEX STAN 301R-2011: REGIONAL STANDARD FOR EDIBLE SAGO FLOUR (Asia1)
- CODEX STAN 105-1981: CODEX STANDARD FOR COCOA POWDERS (COCOAS) AND DRY MIXTURES OF COCOA AND SUGARS
- CODEX STAN 315-2014: STANDARD FOR FRESH AND QUICK FROZEN RAW SCALLOP PRODUCTS
- CODEX STAN 249-2006: CODEX STANDARD FOR INSTANT NOODLES
- CODEX STAN 292-2008: STANDARD FOR LIVE AND RAW BIVALVE MOLLUSCS
- CODEX STAN 313R-2013: REGIONAL STANDARD FOR TEMPE
- CODEX STAN 166 – 1989: STANDARD FOR QUICK FROZEN FISH STICKS (FISH FINGERS), FISH PORTIONS AND FISH FILLETS – BREADED OR IN BATTER
- CODEX STAN 175-1989: CODEX GENERAL STANDARD FOR SOY PROTEIN PRODUCTS
- CODEX STAN 53-1981: CODEX STANDARD FOR SPECIAL DIETARY FOODS WITH LOW-SODIUM CONTENT (INCLUDING SALT SUBSTITUTES)
- CODEX STAN 178-1991: STANDARD FOR DURUM WHEAT SEMOLINA AND DURUM WHEAT FLOUR
- CODEX STAN 298R-2009: REGIONAL STANDARD FOR FERMENTED SOYBEAN PASTE (Asia1)
- CODEX STAN 114-1981: STANDARD FOR QUICK FROZEN FRENCH FRIED POTATOES
- (CODEX STAN 291 – 2010): STANDARD FOR STURGEON CAVIAR