The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India(FSSAI) through its order 22.12.2021 stated that the declaration regarding Non-Veg or Veg-Food is mandatory irrespective of the percentage of any ingredient in the food.
The apex body of food safety has further clarified that the obligation upon the Food Business Operators (FBOs) to make disclosure with regard to the article of food being vegetarian or non-vegetarian as stipulated under Clause 2.2.2 (4) of FSS (Packaging & Labeling) Regulations, 2011 is independent of, and not subject to the provisions of Sub-Clause 2.2.2 (2) (d) of the said Regulations. The exemption in the Sub-clause 2.2.2 (2) (d) is only with regard to declaring the sub-components of compound ingredients in the list of ingredients which are less than 5%.
The Food Business Operators (FBO’s) will have to declare the Non-Vegetarian logo in case any individual constituent ingredient of the compound ingredient is of non-vegetarian in origin, irrespective of the percentage of compound ingredient of the food.
Consequently, the Commissioners of Food Safety of all States/UTs and all the Regional Directors of FSSAI are directed to ensure strict enforcement of the Clause 2.2.2 (4) of FSS (Packaging & Labeling) Regulations, 2011.
FSSAI wants all the manufacturing FBOs under the respective jurisdictions should publicize the above clarification to spread awareness and clarify information in public.