After oils, FSSAI caps Trans Fatty Acids(TFAs) in foods

What is the News?
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India(FSSAI) has amended its rules. Under new rules, it put a cap on trans fatty acids(TFAs) in food products. Previously, it tightened the norms for oils and fats in the food.

What are the new rules?

  • According to FSSAI, Food products contain edible oils and fats. The use of industrial trans fatty acids in these products shall not be more than 2% by mass of the total oils/fats. These rules are effective from 1st January 2022.
  • The allowed limit of TFA was at 5%. In December 2020, the FSSAI had capped TFAs in oils and fats to 3% by 2021, and 2% by 2022.
  • The present amendment has been introduced to achieve the 2022 target.
  • It is in line with the WHO’s call for the elimination of industrially-produced trans-fatty acids from the global food supply by 2023.
  • Achievement of the 2% limit is equal to elimination of TFAs.

About Trans Fatty Acids:

  • They are created in an industrial process.  It adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid. It increases the shelf life of food items and can be used as an adulterant as they are cheap.
  • Present in: They are present in baked, fried, and processed foods as well as adulterated ghee. They become solid at room temperature.
  • Harmful Effects: They are the most harmful form of fats. They clog arteries and cause hypertension, heart attacks, and other cardiovascular diseases.
  • As per the WHO, intake of industrially-produced trans-fatty acids results in approx. 5.4 lakh deaths each year globally.

Initiatives against Trans Fats:

  • Heart Attack Rewind Campaign: It is a mass media campaign launched by FSSAI. It calls for the elimination of industrially-produced trans fat in the food supply by 2022.
  • REPLACE campaign: REPLACE stands for Review, Promote, Legislate, Assess, Create awareness and Enforce. It is a WHO campaign to eliminate industrially-produced artificial trans-fats from the global food supply by 2023.
  • Eat Right India Movement: It was launched by FSSAI in 2018. It is a preventive healthcare measure to trigger social and behavioural change among people. The movement aims to improve public health in India and combat negative nutritional trends to fight lifestyle diseases.

Click Here for Further Reading on Trans Fats

 Source: The Hindu

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