FSSAI in process of collecting pan-India samples of Nestle's Cerelac baby cereals: CEO

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FSSAI in process of collecting pan-India samples of Nestle's Cerelac baby cereals: CEO
Representational imageNestle
Food safety regulator FSSAI on Thursday said it is in the process of collecting pan-India samples of Nestle's Cerelac baby cereals, amid a global report that claimed the company was adding higher sugar content in the product. "We are collecting samples (of Nestle's Cerelac baby cereals) from across the country. It will take 15-20 days to complete the process," Food Safety and Standards Authority (FSSAI) CEO G Kamala Vardhana Rao told PTI on the sidelines of an Assocham event on food fortification.
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FSSAI is a statutory body under the administration of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

The move comes following concerns about alleged high sugar content in Nestle's baby food products expressed by both the consumer affairs ministry and the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) after taking note of a global report published by Swiss NGO Public Eye.

The global report has claimed that Nestle sold baby products with higher sugar content in less developed South Asian countries including India, Africa and Latin American nations as compared to markets in Europe.

However, Nestle India has maintained that it never compromises on compliance and it has reduced added sugar in baby food products in India by up to 30 per cent depending on variants over the past five years.

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Earlier, addressing the Assocham event, the FSSAI CEO highlighted the importance of food fortification for human health and called for fortification beyond rice to include millets and other alternative foods.

FMCG firms have introduced varieties of millet-based products in the last few years and they can further expand the basket of nutritional foods in the country, he added.

The CEO also unveiled an Assocham's knowledge report 'Fortifying India's Future: Significance of Food Fortification and Nutrition' on the occasion.

LT Foods Global Branded Business CEO Vivek Chandra, Shariqua Yunus of World Food Programme, Fortify Health CEO Tony Senanyake and Farm to Fork Solutions CEO Umesh Kamble also spoke about food fortification.

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