Centre drags Maggi to consumer panel
With concern growing among consumers about Maggi noodles, the Centre on Wednesday filed a written complaint before the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission against the Indian arm of the Swiss multinational for alleged violations of safety standards.
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New Delhi: With concern growing among consumers about Maggi noodles, the Centre on Wednesday filed a written complaint before the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission against the Indian arm of the Swiss multinational for alleged violations of safety standards.
Amitabh Bachchan, who featured in noodles advertisements, said that he would cooperate with the authorities in the probe. Responding to the raging controversy, Chandra Bhushan, Centre for Science and Environment’s deputy director general, said: “It’s an issue of public health. There is no room for any compromise. It’s great that for the first time, processed food is being tested for contaminants like heavy metals by our food safety authorities.”
The controversy erupted after Delhi government’s recent discovery: it found traces of lead exceeding the prescribed limit of 2.5 ppm in 10 packets of Maggi noodles out of 13 samples. Uttar Pradesh has found lead in samples with levels as high as 17 ppm. Apart from lead, monosodium glutamate (MSG) -- commonly known as ajinomoto -- was also present in the samples with no appropriate label declaration.
The Food Safety and Standards (Food Products Standards and Food Additives) Regulation, 2011 provides a list of food products that should not have flavour enhancers like MSG. A Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) lab research had found a packet of noodle had around 3 grams of salt – the recommended salt intake per person per day is 6 grams.
“This means that if you eat a packet, you will have to watch your salt intake throughout the day. Consumption of such high content of salt is associated with the risk of obesity and diabetes,” said Amit Khurana, of CSE’s food safety team.