Meenakshi Verma Ambwani / New Delhi
To establish a self-monitoring mechanism for dairy establishments.
Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) on Friday said it plans to launch a scheme for sampling, testing and inspection of milk, in a bid to set up a self- monitoring mechanism for licensed dairy establishments.
The food safety authority said this move is expected to strengthen internal controls at the licensed dairy processing establishments. Under this scheme, milk processors will need to undertake certain quality and safety tests at regular intervals, it added.
“This will help the establishments in identifying the cause of any non-compliance, take preventive and corrective action. The Scheme is tentatively planned from October 1, 2019 and would besubjected to compliance verification from January 1, 2020 giving adequate time for milk processing units to adjust and upgrade to the requirement,” FSSAI said in a statement.
The regulators will initiate sensitization activities for dairy processors regarding this scheme. It has also advised state authorities to strengthen enforcement along with State Animal Husbandry Departments at dairy establishments registered by State Authorities.
This move comes after FSSAI’s National Milk Quality Survey last year revealed that while milk in India is largely safe, a few samples were found to be containing adulterants and residues of contaminants. The scheme will be part of its initiatives to ensure the supply of safe and quality milk to consumers and address the non-compliance observed in processed milk.
Meanwhile, FSSAI CEO Pawan Agarwal also expressed concerns regarding “baseless” fake news and misleading posts being circulated on social media regarding safety of commonly-consumed food items in the country.
For instance : recently a fake news was circulated in social media that as per WHO, most of the milk in India is adulterated. “WHO Country Office in India has confirmed no such advisory has ever been issued by WHO to Government of India,” the regulator pointed out.