Govt says Maggi samples being tested; ads by celebrities under scanner
"FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) has taken up the case, it will take action. We have already written to the FSSAI," food and consumer affairs minister Ram Vilas Paswan told reporters in New Delhi.Updated: Jun 01, 2015 20:15 IST
The government said on Monday it is testing more samples of Maggi collected from different states after food inspectors found excess of monosodium glutamate and lead in the instant noodles adding that celebrities endorsing the brand will be liable for action if they are found to be misleading.
"FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) has taken up the case, it will take action. We have already written to the FSSAI," food and consumer affairs minister Ram Vilas Paswan told reporters in New Delhi.
The minister, however, said the consumer affairs department has not received any complaints from consumers so far.
Elaborating on the steps that are being taken by the government, consumer affairs additional secretary G Gurucharan said: "FSSAI has taken samples from all states. Testings are being done. Some reports are expected today (Monday) and within 2-3 days we will get complete reports."
All parameters are being tested, Gurucharan added.
If there is any violation, FSSAI will take action, he said, adding that the consumer affairs ministry can also file class action suits.
Gurucharan also said that brand ambassadors endorsing Maggi will also be liable for action if advertisements are found to be misleading.
Under FSSAI act, there are provisions to enforce corrective acts and impose a penalty, he added.
Comments from Nestle India could not be obtained as e-mailed query to the company spokesperson remained unanswered.
Last week a case was lodged against Nestle by Uttar Pradesh's food regulator, Food Safety and Drug Administration (FSDA), in a local court at Barabanki in Uttar Pradesh over safety standards of its Maggi, while Bollywood actors Amitabh Bachchan, Madhuri Dixit and Preity Zinta were also separately dragged to court for promoting the two-minute snack.
FSDA had ordered a recall of a 2,00,000-pack batch of noodles at the end of April, after testing samples which said showed elevated levels of monosodium glutamate (MSG), a flavour enhancer, and lead 17 times above the permissible limit.
Nestle, which says it does not add MSG to the noodles, disputes the order and has said the noodles are safe to eat.
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