New Delhi - FSSAI has instructed all the State Food Safety Departments to investigate the alleged use of dairy terms on the labels of plant based beverages and food products. The Food Regulator FSSAI, in a recent order, has directed the State Food Safety Departments to investigate and identify specific instances for violation of the use of dairy terminology for non-dairy or plant based products by Food Business Operators (FBOs). \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nFSSAI has said that in case of any violation, FBOs may be granted 15 days\u2019 time to suitably improve or modify their product labels and strictly comply with the relevant provisions of FSS (Food Products Standards and Food Additives) Regulation, 2011 before the Food Safety Departments take any enforcement action. This step will ensure an appropriate enforcement action against such defaulting FBOs as per the provisions of Food Safety and Standards (FSS) Act, 2005 and Rules\/Regulations made thereunder.\n\n\n\nAs per the FSSAI \u2018General Standards for Milk and Milk Products\u2019 under the \u2018Food Safety and Standards (Food Products Standards and Food Additives) Regulations, 2011\u2019, use of any dairy term for a product which is not milk or a milk product or a composite milk product e.g. plant based products or beverages, is prohibited and any such action is in contravention of the said Regulations. Further, the term \u2018curd\u2019 is also not considered a dairy term exclusively for such products, and has been associated with non-dairy products such as \u2018soybean curd\u2019 in our regulations which also is in consistency with the relevant Codex standards. \n\n\n\nHowever, exceptions are permissible for usage of dairy terminology in the nomenclature of certain products like coconut milk, peanut butter etc. in reference to the internationally accepted principle that dairy terms were being traditionally used in their nomenclature and such products are not substitutes for milk or milk products.\n\n\n\nSince, a lot of such products are sold through E-Commerce Food Business Operators (FBOs), FSSAI has also instructed all E-Commerce platforms to delist such products which are reported to be in contravention to the regulatory provisions related to the application of dairy \u2018terms\u2019 from their online platforms immediately. FSSAI has further directed that no such defaulting products listed on the online platforms are allowed for sale in the future as well.