Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) on Monday said that the FSSAI's draft regulation on front-of-the-pack nutritional labelling (FOPNL) will impact small sweet and namkeen manufacturers.
In September, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) had issued draft regulations for FOPNL for packaged food companies. It proposes to introduce the concept of five star ratings to provide information about the nutritional value of the products to consumers.
The industry body has sought immediate attention towards a draft notification issued by the FSSAI for the printing of Indian Nutrition Rating (INR) on food packets as part of a labelling exercise with healthy food items getting a higher rating.
"This move undoubtedly looks to be logical which has been brought with a good intention to ensure quality and nutrified food to the people of India. However, the proposed rules have not taken into account the ground reality of the food trade and various parameters of spending of the consumers," CAIT National Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal said in the letter.
"The said rules are an attempt to run the food trade with one stick though India is land of great diversity," he added.
Khandelwal noted that crores of small halwai, food operators, sweet & namkeen makers and others cater to the requirement of about 80 per cent population of the country.
"Any legislation or regulation which may be drafted to regulate them with one yardstick will end with closure of these large number of small sweet and namkeen manufacturers traditionally known as halwai and bakers, which will further result into unemployment of a large number of workers who work with these small halwai and sweet namkeen manufacturers," he said.
Khandelwal urged the health minister to consider the submissions made by the CAIT.
Earlier, Indian Sellers Collective, an umbrella body of trade associations and sellers across the country, has opposed the FSSAI's draft regulation on the FOPNL, saying that it will badly affect the MSME packaged food industry.
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