Blending mustard oil with any other edible oil will be prohibited in the country effective from October 1. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has taken this decision on the direction of the Central government to facilitate sale of pure mustard oil for domestic consumption.
“No manufacturing of blended edible vegetable oil with mustard oil as an ingredient will be allowed with effect from October 1, 2020,” FSSAI stated in its order. “The Government of India, after due deliberation has directed Food Safety and Standards Authority of India to prohibit blending in mustard oil and to facilitate manufacture and sale of pure mustard oil for domestic consumption in public interest,” the FSSAI order stated.
It added that since finalisation of regulations on this matter will take some time it is “operationalising’ the Draft Food Safety and Standards (Prohibition and Restriction on Sales) Amendment Regulations, 2020 to implement the government’s directive from October 1. The food safety authority said that while the standards for blended edible vegetable oils permits “admixture of any two edible vegetable oils where the proportion of weight of any edible vegetable oil used in the admixture is not less than 20 per cent.” But according to the amended regulations, FSSAI will prohibit “sales of certain admixtures” namely, “ any blended edible vegetable oil containing mustard oil.”
Last month, the food safety regulator had intensified the crackdown against sale of adulterated edible oils through pan-India surveillance. The regulator said this drive was to ensure availability of pure and safe mustard oil and other edible vegetable oils in the country.
FSSAI has also directed state food safety commissioners to ensure that testing for oryzanol in mustard oil is carried out on regular basis at vegetable oil refineries and other edible oil production units with strict enforcement. Rice bran oil, cheaper and a rich source of oryzanol, is most prevalently used as an adulterant in mustard oils.