FSSAI said – The news of approval of 10 times more pesticides is baseless: Less pesticides are allowed in spices than the prescribed standards, FSSAI is investigating Indian spices.

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has refuted all those media reports in which it was being claimed that the Indian Food Controller allows the addition of 10 times more pesticides than the prescribed standard in herbs and spices. FSSAI said in a press release that ‘all such news are false and baseless. The Maximum Residue Level (MRL) in India is one of the strictest standards in the world. MRLs of pesticides are determined separately for different food materials based on their risk assessment. Limit was increased for some pesticides However, FSSAI admitted that some pesticides, which are not registered with the Central Pesticides Board and Registration Committee (CIB RC) in India. For them, this limit was increased 10 times from 0.01 mg/kg to 0.1 mg/kg. This was done only on the recommendation of the scientific panel. (CIB RC) regulate the manufacturing, import-export, transport and storage etc. of pesticides. More than 295 pesticides are registered with CIB and RC. There are more than 295 pesticides registered with CIB and RC in India. Of these, 139 pesticides can be used in spices. Whereas, Codex has adopted a total of 243 pesticides, out of which 75 can be used in spices. Limit of mycobutanil in chilli powder is 2 mg/kg FSSAI said that CODEX has set a maximum limit of 20 mg/kg for mycobutanil mixed in chilli powder. Whereas FSSAI allows mixing it only up to 2 mg/kg. Similarly, for another pesticide Spiromesifen, Codex has set a limit of 5 mg/kg, but FSSAI allows only up to 1 mg/kg for it. Codex has set a limit of 2mg/kg for the use of Metalaxyl and Metalaxyl-M for black pepper, while FSSAI allows it to be mixed only up to 0.5mg/kg. Codex is a global organization protecting consumer health and monitoring food business. It allows food standards to be set and enforced between international governmental and non-governmental organizations. FSSAI allows less pesticides than the global limit for spices

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