High lead content in batch of Maggi noodles sparks recall buzz

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Lucknow/New Delhi
  • Updated: Jun 08, 2015 11:30 IST

Food inspectors in Uttar Pradesh have found dangerously-high lead content in a batch of the popular two-minute instant noodle brand Maggi, leading to speculation about its maker Nestle India recalling the particular lot.

The UP commissioner food safety and drug administration, PK Singh, told HT investigations on the Maggi samples seized by the Food Safety and Drug Administration (FDA) from the state had been completed and high lead content was found in the batch.

But he didn’t confirm what kind of fine was likely to be slapped on Nestle or if high levels of added monosodium glutamate (MSG), a taste enhancer, were also found, adding that the facts would be confirmed by Thursday.

Officials in Delhi, too, said they had no information about any possible recall.

“The health ministry is involved in dealing with issues at the policy level, the operational part or the enforcement of food safety guidelines is the responsibility of the state,” said a senior health ministry official.

India has Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), established under the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006, which handles food-related issues.

“We have a scientific panel that assesses the safety of ingredients used in different types of foods and have withdrawn permission in the past for production, sale and distribution of products that were found to have ingredients unsuitable for consumption. However, we have not received any official complaint in this particular matter,” said an FSSAI official.

Mails sent by HT to Nestle India -- a subsidiary of the Swiss-based food giant Nestle -- remained unanswered but reports said the company had denied adding MSG to Maggi.

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