The Food Safety and Standards (Alcoholic Beverages) Regulations 2018 were notified in the Gazette of India on 19 March 2018 and were to be enforced on 1 April 2019. Since there have been several representations seeking clarity on the gazette notification so for ease of understanding these
alcoholic beverages regulations FSSAI has prepared the following FAQs
FAQ 1:How will products with Geographical Indication (GI) be covered under these regulations?
Clarification: GI products shall be registered under the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 and meet the country specific regulations for such GI products of the country of origin with regard to quality parameters.
Further, such products shall conform to all safety requirements such as limits of heavy metals and microbiological requirements as specified under these regulations and other regulations notified under the Act.
FAQ 2: How to declare the amount of sugar in wines?
Clarification: the amount of sugar as specified under the clause 5.9.1 may be given in range. The defined sugar content is weight/ volume (w/v)
FAQ 3: what will be the font size of the Statutory Warning for small size SKUs of 60ml/90ml/ 180ml?
Clarification: The font size of the statutory warning shall be 1.5mm for SKUs upto 200ml pack size and above that the size shall be 3mm.
FAQ 4: What is meant by ±0.3 percent tolerance limit of ethyl alcohol?
Clarification:±0.3 percent tolerance limit of ethyl alcohol means the maximum permissible variation which is calculated by adding or subtracting 0.3 in the nominal value (ethyl alcohol) of the declared strength.
FAQ 5: What is meant by date of vintage on the label of wine?
Clarification: Date of vintage may be taken as the year of vintage.
FAQ 6: Is it mandatory to mention the exact percentage of alcohol in Beer?
Clarification: The upper limit of alcohol in regular beer is upto 5% and strong beer above 5% and upto 8% may be mentioned on the labels instead of exact percentage of alcohol.
FAQ:7 Is it mandatory to put the Statutory Warning in a box?
Clarification: Yes. As indicated in the regulation it is mandatory to put the Statutory Warning in a box.
FAQ 8: About applicability of yeast parameter in Beer
Clarification: The parameters of yeast in the various categories of Beer shall not apply till a final view is taken.
FAQ 9: What is the implementation status of alcoholicbeverages not covered under the regulation?
Clarification: Manufacturing, importing, packing and distribution of ‘Craft Beer’ and ‘Wine Based Beverages’ currently traded/ available in the market are permitted to be continued. However, for any other new innovative alcoholic beverages not covered under these regulations, the FBOs will have to approach the Food Authority.
FAQ 10: What will happen to the existing stock from 1 April, 2019?
Clarification: Old unused labels and printed cans have been given a time period of 6 months for use. These as well as alcoholic beverages manufactured prior to 1 April, 2019 can be sold in the market upto 31 March 2020 or till amendments are finalised, whichever is later.
FAQ11: What fee will be charged for registration of new/change in label?
Clarification: Registration of new/change in label is mandatory under the Excise Act. The levy of the fee charged may be waived off on a one-time basis by the respective State/ UT Governments.
FAQ 12: Is it mandatory to use 2% Grape Spirit in Brandy?
Clarification: Yes. It is mandatory to use minimum 2% of pure grape brandy in case of Blended Brandy. However, one new category “Indian Brandy” is being introduced and this does not require the addition of grape spirit.
FAQ 13: In Wines can water be added more than 30ml per kg of grape or fruit?
Clarification: Water added in the preparation of wine is in the process of revision from the existing limit of not more than 30 ml per kg to 70 ml per kg of grape or fruit and the same will be notified in due process. Meanwhile, the FBOs are required to comply with the limit under revision.