FDA instructed restaurant to display trans-fat chart outside their premises

Mumbai: In an attempt to reduce the trans fat content in the food products, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Thursday instructed all the eateries and restaurants to display the level of trans-fats in their food substances and cooking oil.

FDA official said they have asked the restaurant and eateries across city to prepare a chart of trans-fat substances which they have to display outside their premises. “We had taken a seminar on amount of trans-fats to be used in food products. Food establishments like bakeries, sweet shops and other food outlets were encouraged to use healthier fat/oil options, thereby reducing the trans-fat content in the foods,” said an official.

Shailesh Adhav, joint commissioner, FDA said the food establishments which uses trans-fat free fats/oils and do not have industrial trans-fat more than 0.2 per 100g of the food in compliance with the regulations on Claims and Advertisements, 2018 can display ‘Trans Fat Free’ logo in their outlets and on their food products.”

“The use of the ‘Trans Fat-Free’ logo is voluntary. It will be the responsibility of the Food Business Operators to comply with the requirements as specified in the Food Safety and Standards (Advertising and Claims) Regulations, 2018, in cases wherein a claim to this effect is made,” said Adhav.

Restaurants and eateries owners across the city have welcomed this move stating they will follow the order of FDA and soon they will display a chart outside their premises with a ‘Trans Fat-Free’ logo. “It is the great move taken by the FDA as it will help us to know about the side effects on using industrial trans-fats used in food products. We will make complete chart of trans-fats used in our food products and will display it,” said Nilesh Mishra, owner of Bajrang Hotel.

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), in order to strengthen its fight against trans-fats and limiting its percentage in food products, has decided to put forth a regulation through an amendment in the Food Safety and Standards (Prohibition and Restriction on Sales) Regulations, 2019. According to experts, trans-fats are considered to be the worst type of fats. A diet laden with trans-fats increases the risk of heart diseases and decreases the good cholesterol in the hydrogenated oil.

Industrial trans fats are largely present in partially hydrogenated fats such as margarine and bakery shortenings (used in the preparation of bakery products) and in vanaspati (used in the preparation of sweets and deep-fried foods.)

Industrial trans-fats are toxic compounds which led to cardiovascular and other related diseases. They are formed during hydrogenation of vegetable oils and other processes such as heating of oil at high temperature.

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