Ban proposed on sale, ads of junk food in school

FSSAI releases draft regulations

November 06, 2019 05:33 am | Updated 05:33 am IST - NEW DELHI

Aimed at enabling children to eat and grow healthy, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) on Tuesday released draft regulations titled Food Safety and Standards (Safe Food and healthy diets for School Children) Regulations, 2019.

“At the heart of these regulations is a fundamental idea to make it clear what is healthy for children and what is not,’’ said a senior FSSAI official.

One of the important regulations proposed is that foods high in fat, salt and sugar (HFSS) cannot be sold to children in school canteens/mess premises/hostel kitchens or within 50 m of the school campus.

Schools should adopt a comprehensive programme for promoting healthy diets among children. The school campus should be converted into ‘Eat Right School’ focussing on local and seasonal food and no food waste as per the specified benchmarks.

According to studies, about 8% of schoolchildren are obese. FSSAI has also proposed that children have to be encouraged to consume balanced diet in the school as per the guidelines issued by the National Institute of Nutrition. “Nutritionists, dieticians may be engaged by the school to assist in the preparation of menu periodically. Also it has been proposed that there should be regular inspection of school premises where safe, healthy and hygienic food should be served to students,’’ noted FSSAI.

The FSSAI has invited suggestions and objections from stakeholders within 30 days.

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