The FSSAI has issued directions on 30 January 2020 regarding implementation of Food Safety and Standards (Alcoholic Beverages Standards) Regulations, 2018 especially with regard to implementation of labelling requirements for Indian brandy.
FSSAI had created a new category ‘Indian Brandy’ under Brandy in the Food Safety and Standards (Alcoholic Beverages Standards) Regulations, 2018 in the directions issued on March 29, 2019 as follows:
Brandy: A new category ‘Indian Brandy’ is inserted under Brandy which shall be made either from neutral spirit or rectified spirit or a mixture of both. Such product shall be labelled as ‘Indian Brandy’ followed by a statement under bracket as ‘(Made from molasses Spirit’) with a font size that is easily readable. The font size of the words ‘Indian’ and ‘Brandy’ shall be same.
In October 2019 the FSSAI had extended the time period for implementation of the above -mentioned labelling requirements of Indian Brandy as “Indian Brandy (Made from Molasses Spirit) to 31 March 2020. The extension had also been given for the use of unused old labels and printed cans, wherein old labels and printed cans could be used till this date.
However, the FSSAI has now received comments from various stakeholders on the Draft Food Safety and Standards (Alcoholic Beverages Standards) Amendment Regulations 2019, dated 5 July, 2019 wherein it had been suggested to change the labelling requirement of Indian brandy as given above. This suggestion has been made keeping in mind that brandy is widely made from sources other than molasses. Therefore, based on the comments received so far, the FSSAI had decided to revise the labelling requirements in the finalisation of the said draft notification. However, the notification of said final amendment regulation will take time.
FSSAI has also received representations from various stakeholders asking to extend the time period for implementation of these labelling requirements. Stakeholders have stated that they have to register the label with each state/UT Excise well in advance for timely printing, i.e. in January for next excise year and that is the reason for requesting the extension for the implementation of labelling of Indian Brandy. After due consideration, the FSSAI has decided that the date of implementation of labelling of Indian Brandy as “Indian brandy (Made from Molasses spirit) as required has been further extended till the final notification of said Food Safety and Standards (Alcoholic Beverages Standards) Amendment Regulations.