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FSSAI clarifies the A1 A2 milk and Organic foods concepts under its FAQ

Large number of dairy products are available in the market having labels like A2 /organic/natural milk and milk products. The consumer does not have any clarity over the same. Even the sellers never try to conduct a deep research before labelling their products with such endorsements.

FSSAI website has given a clear verdict on such popular labelling captions like A2, organic, etc. Marketers are publicising the benefits of A1 over A2 on social media as well as on product’s label without any scientific evidence. Such acts by the marketers are actually a case of mislabeling and food frauds.

A1/A2 milk

Standards of milk as specified in Food Safety and Standards (Food Product Standards and Food Additives) Regulations, 2011 do not mention or recognise any differentiation of milk on the basis of A1 and A2 types.
Although the issue regarding adverse/beneficial effects of A1 and A2 types of milk have been discussed in various meetings of Scientific Panel on Milk and Milk Products.

The panel did not come to any conclusion on this issue due to lack of clinical data and risk assessment done at scale so far. A1 and A2 are types of Milk protein. However the marketer uses this term for his dairy products like Ghee which does not have any protein in it.

Organic food regulation

Organic foods are classified under section 22 of the Food safety Standards Act 2006. Food Safety and Standards (organic foods) regulations 2017 regulates these foods , notified under the provision of the Act.

This regulation recognise two systems of certification for organic foods. The first one is Participatory Guarantee System (PGS-India). Ministry of agriculture and farmer’s welfare implements PGS-India scheme.. The second one is National Program for Organic Production (NPOP) which is implemented by Ministry of commerce and Industry. All organic foods must be certified by any one of the systems.

Exemption from Organic certification

Small original producer or producer organisation can sell these products directly to consumers without any certification. Small producer or producer organisations are the one whose annual turnover is less than Rs 12 lakhs.

Smart marketers have used this exemption as an opportunity by creating farmer’s market in high end localities of all metros . They bring farm produce from different sources and sell them at hefty premium as A2/ organic produce in dairy food categories.

Strict rules must be there to safeguard consumers against premium charging practices of FBO in the name of A2/organic.

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