Packaging Laws and Regulations in India

The following packaging obligation applies only to milk and dairy products: Before we get into the various regulations under which packaging laws are regulated in India, it is important to understand the following: The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) was established under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, as a statutory body responsible for regulating manufacturing. The processing, distribution, sale and importation of food and its labelling and packaging requirements. The tin plate used for the production of tin containers for packaging edible oils and fats must meet the first-class quality standards contained in the BIS standards. In the comments on the draft regulation on food safety and standards (packaging) (notified to the World Trade Organization (WTO) on 6. November 2017), the European Union demanded that the BRI provide the standards free of charge, noting that non-Indian companies have to pay higher prices than Indian companies. The EU also stressed that the standards were “not very recent” and called on the Indian authorities to approve new materials if they could be shown to have a safety profile equivalent to or better than materials approved under the standards. The EU also requested information on the mechanism for submitting applications to the BIS with a view to establishing new specifications. The final regulations allow for the use of relevant international standards where Indian standards are not available. Exporters should review Chapter 2 of the Packaging and Labelling Regulations, 2011 (FSS) and the Code of Standards and Food Safety (Packaging and Labelling) before designing labels for products for export to India. The FSSAI revised the labelling regulations and a draft notification was published on 11 April 2018, inviting comments from WTO member states and the comments received are currently under review and the date of publication is still unknown. According to the FSS Packaging and Labelling Regulations, 2011, “prepackaged foods” or “prepackages”, including multi-part packages, must have mandatory information on the label.

Products that only have the U.S. standard label are not eligible to participate. With regard to the shelf life of imported food, a communication from the Ministry of Commerce dated 30. July 2001: “The importation of all food products whose sale and manufacture in the domestic market is subject to the Food Adulteration Prevention Act (PFA) enacted by the FSSAI is also subject to the following condition: At the time of importation, these products have a valid shelf life of at least 60% of their original shelf life. The shelf life of the product shall be calculated on the basis of the declaration on the product label concerning the date of manufacture and the expiry date. For more information on food laws and regulations, visit the FSSAI websites at: Food Safety and Standards Act: fssai.gov.in/cms/act-2006.phpFood Safety and Standard Rules, 2011: fssai.gov.in/cms/food-safety-and-standards-rules–2011.phpFood Safety and Standards Regulations: fssai.gov.in/cms/food-safety-and-standards-regulations.php 17. In May 2022, India`s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare/Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) issued a F. No. STD/SP-20/T (recycled plastics-N) on notification of changes to food safety rules and standards (packaging) (2018). The notice was published in the Official Gazette of India on 18 May 2022 and uploaded to the FSSAI website on 24 May 2022. The amendment concerns the use of products made from recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) in food packaging. Members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) are invited to comment on the proposed amendment.

The comment period is 60 days from the date the draft notification is uploaded to the FSSAI website. All packaged drinking water must be in clean, hygienic, colourless, transparent and tamper-resistant polyethylene (PE) bottles/containers (according to IS:10146) or polyvinyl chloride (PVC) according to IS: 10151 or polyalkylene terephthalate (PET and PBT) according to IS: 12252 or polypropylene according to IS: 10910 or suitable food-grade polycarbonate or sterile glass to prevent possible falsification or contamination of the water, be packaged.

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