8th India-Oman Joint Meeting Begins in Muscat

The Commerce Minister, Suresh Prabhu, co-chaired 8th session of India-Oman Joint Commission Meeting along with Minister of Industry of Oman, Dr. Ali bin Masoud Al Sunaidy. The Commerce Minister launched investment friendly programmes with a business opportunity in the country. JCM include cooperation in space, SMEs, food security, including durable foods and visit of young entrepreneurs.

Haddad and Nabarro win World Food Prize

Lawrence Haddad and David Nabarro win 2018 World Food Prize. The World Food Prize was created by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Norman Borlaug in 1986 to recognize scientists and others who have improved the quality and availability of food. The two men who have worked to provide availability of nutritious food for pregnant women and children to reduce malnutrition in developing countries.

CPI inflation quickens to 4-month high

Retail inflation accelerated to a four-month high in May as quickening food and fuel costs lifted the Consumer Price Index (CPI) based reading to 4.87%. The acceleration in price gains in May, a second straight month when the headline reading has risen, followed April’s 4.58% pace. The food and beverages segment saw inflation accelerating to 3.37% in May, from 3% in April.

Fortified rice to be distributed through PDS

Union Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan announced that his Ministry will be distributing fortified rice through the public distribution system. He once again promised that the prices of grains supplied through the PDS would not be increased till June 2019. Fortified foods are foods to which extra nutrients have been added. Examples – vitamin A, B vitamins, vitamin D, folic acid, iodine & iron.

NBFC for food processing sector

Food Processing Ministry will soon create its new financial institution which will exclusively fund food processing projects and create capacity building in the field of risk assessment and lending to food processing sector. The Agro-Processing Financial Institution will be a non-banking financial institution. The government is likely to hold a minority stake in this NBFC.

IRCTC roped in Trapigo for food delivery

IRCTC has rolled out the facility of delivering food to passengers on their train seats. For the food delivery, Indian Railways has roped in Trapigo which provides last-mile logistics services for food products and other amenities such as medicines, travel, kits, handicrafts etc. Trapigo is unique as it has specialized the technology to deliver articles to the traveling customers.

MoU on cooperation in food security approved

Union Cabinet has given its ex-post facto approval to the Memorandum of Understanding between India & Denmark regarding cooperation in the area of food safety. It will help improve food safety standard setting by getting access to best practices & facilitating food trade of important commodities. It will also promote understanding of best practices in areas of food safety in both countries.

WHO launched ‘REPLACE’

WHO has launched a comprehensive plan to “REPLACE” to eliminate industrially-produced artificial trans fats from global food supply by 2023. REPLACE stands for review dietary sources, promote the use of healthier fats, legislate, assess changes, create awareness and enforce. REPLACE package is the first time WHO is calling for the elimination of something other than a noncommunicable disease

Pawan Agarwal gets extension as CEO of FSSAI

Pawan Kumar Agarwal has been given three months extension as the Chief Executive Officer of the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). Pawan Kumar Agarwal is a 1985-batch IAS officer of West Bengal cadre and has served as Joint Secretary of Ministry of Skill Development and Entre-preneurship. He was appointed as the CEO of the FSSAI in December 2015.

New norms for labeling food planned

8 : Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has released new draft regulations on food packaging. All packaged food with at least 5% content from genetically engineered sources need to be labeled so. Foods that exceed norms of sugar and fat will need to carry ‘red’ and ‘green’ labels specifying the extent to which they do so.

Mumbai to host food archaeology conference

Mumbai is hosting a conference that will look at food from point of views of history, archaeology and sociology.Titled “ArchaeoBroma”, the conference, to be held on May 5 and 6, is being touted as India’s first-ever national meet on “food as culture”. It will be organised by the India Study Centre Trust and the Centre for Extra-Mural Studies of the University of Mumbai.

Retail inflation falls to 5-month low

India’s retail inflation based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) eased to a 5-month low of 4.28% in March, government data showed.Further, the food inflation for the month stood at 2.81%, compared to 3.26% in February. Notably, this is the third straight month where inflation softened after hitting a 17-month high in December.

FSSAI launches Project Dhoop

Food safety regulator FSSAI launched an initiative Project Dhoop to encourage schools to shift their morning assembly to around noon-time to ensure maximum absorption of Vitamin D in students through natural sunlight.The move comes in the backdrop of rising incidence of Vitamin D deficiency in the country. The initiative urges schools to conduct their morning assembly between 11 am & 1 pm

Uttarakhand’s 2nd mega food park inaugurated

Union Minister for Food Processing Industries inaugurated the second mega food park in Uttarakhand at Mahuakhera Ganj village, Kashipur in Udham Singh Nagar district.The first Mega Food Park in the state located at Haridwar has already become operational. The mega food park would have a central processing centre as well as well as three Primary Processing Centres.

Agreement between India and Afghanistan

Cabinet approved the agreement between Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) and Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation & Livestock (MAIL), Afghanistan for cooperation in the field of food safety. FSSAI and MAIL would establish a mechanism of information exchange and communication. Areas of cooperation also include facilitating technical exchange on identified topics of interest.

Rajasthan’s First Mega Food Park

Union Minister for Food Processing inaugurated the Greentech Mega Food Park Private Ltd, the 1st mega food park in Ajmer district, Rajasthan. The mega food park would have a central processing centre as well as four Primary Processing Centres at Jaipur, Nagaur, Tonk and Churu. Mega Food Park includes cold storage, deep freezer, dry warehouse for raw materials, silos, steam generator.

Department of Posts launched Cool EMS Service

Department of Posts has launched the ?Cool EMS Service? which will come into force from 29th March. Cool EMS service is one-way service from Japan to India which allows customers in India to import Japanese food items for personal use which is allowed under Indian regulations. Initially, Cool EMS Service will be available in Delhi only.

Scientists to publish land health report

Scientists will publish the first-ever analysis of the global state of land and its ability to sustain a fast-growing human population that relies on it for 95% of all food. The report will contain the effects of unsustainable farming, mining and climate change on Earth. Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services? will publish the report.

Global Recycling Day

To promote action on recycling, recycling associations across the globe are observing the first Global Recycling Day on 18th March. By 2025, India‘s waste management sector is expected to be worth US$13.62 billion with an annual growth rate of 7.17 percent. Polyethylene Terephthalate is a food grade plastic which is used for food and pharma packaging has the highest rate of recycling.

Wholesale inflation eases to 2.48% in Feb

Inflation based on wholesale prices eased to a seven-month low of 2.48% in February on cheaper food articles, including vegetables. According to government data released, inflation in food articles slowed to 0.88% in February from 3% in January. Inflation in pulses remained in the negative zone at (-) 24.51% and cereals, wheat and items like egg, fish and meat were in the negative zone.

Prevention of food loss by Radiation

7 : Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) & Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) in particular is engaged in extensive research on the use of radiation processing for extending shelf life of food products. Irradiation is very effective in treating agricultural produce to enhance its shelf life. Application of nuclear techniques has helped in increasing productivity and production in agriculture.

Kollam to bring all food biz under FSSA

Kollam will become the first district in India to bring all food business operators under the provisions of the Food Safety and Standards Act (FSSA). Bakeries, auditoriums, hospitals, schools, charity organizations, public distribution chains, hostels have been included. Factories operating in the cashew sector and ice plants in the fishing sector have been put through the licencse process.

The reptile that could detach its tail

Scientists have identified ancient reptiles dating back to 289 million years ago that could detach their tails to escape the grasp of their predators. The reptiles, called Captorhinus, weighed less than two kilograms and were smaller than the predators of the time. Captorhinus are small omnivores and herbivores, and its relatives had to scrounge for food while avoiding being preyed upon.

1st Mega Food Park Inaugurated In Maharashtra

The first Mega Food Park in the state of Maharashtra, Satara Mega Food Park Pvt. Ltd. at Village Degaon, District Satara was inaugurated by Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Union Minister of Food Processing Industries. This is the 10th Mega Food Park being operationalized in the country. Satara Mega Food Park has been set up in 64 acres of land at a cost of ` 139.30 crore.

Amazon enters food retail venture

Amazon has rolled out its own food retailing business in India called Amazon Retail with a pilot in Pune.With this Amazon becomes the 1st foreign e-commerce firm to stock & sell food items directly to consumers. Amazon had last year secured govt’s permission to invest $500mn in a wholly-owned venture to retail locally produced & packaged food products through offline & online channels.

FSSAI asks states to ensure ‘hygenic’ prasad

The country’s food safety regulator has asked the states to roll out a project to ensure that devotees were served safe prasad at places of worship.FSSAI said these places are requested to roll out the project BHOG.Blissful Hygienic Offering to God, or BHOG, is a part of FSSAI’s safe and nutritious food bouquet of initiatives launched a year ago.

Dubai opens sustainable floating drive-thru

A floating burger joint, billed as the world’s first sustainable floating drive-thru, has come up in Dubai.The joint, named Salt Bay, provides a catering service to customers on boats, jet skis and yachts.Its owners say it currently serves burgers but will expand its menu to include pizzas and desserts if the joint gains popularity.

Organic food company to have certificate

The Food Safety and Standards Authority has issued regulations that required food companies selling organic produce to get certified with one of the two authorities – National Prog. for Organic Production or the Participatory Guarantee System for India.Companies could also get a voluntary logo from the FSSAI. FSSAI is an autonomous body established under the Mi. of Health & Family Welfare.

Dr. Reddy’s unveils cancer drug in U.S.

Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories has introduced Melphalan Hydrochloride for injection, a therapeutic equivalent generic version of Alkeran for injection, in the U.S. market. Melphalan hydrochloride for injection is indicated for the palliative treatment of patients with multiple myeloma for whom oral therapy is not appropriate. It has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Consumer Protection Bill introduced

Cabinet approved the introduction of the Consumer Protection Bill, 2017, to amend the Consumer Protection Act, 1986.It is focused on faster redressal of consumer grievances and to ensure stringent action against unfair trade practices.The Bill seeks to enlarge the scope of the existing Act and proposes stricter actions against misleading advertisements and food adulteration.

Sodexo partners with Swiggy

Sodexo, an employee benefit provider has announced its partnership with food ordering & delivery platform, Swiggy.With this in place, 3 million daily users of Sodexo can now use their Meal Cards to order food via Swiggy app, thus enabling seamless food delivery and payment.Through this, Sodexo aims at leveraging their technological expertise in their transformation to a digitized entity.

Swiggy acqui-hires 48East

Food ordering and delivery platform Swiggy announced that it has acqui-hired Bengaluru-based gourmet Asian food start-up 48East.48East offers a new menu every week, operates 5 kitchens, processes 9,000 orders a month and serves over a dozen areas in Bengaluru.Founders of 48East, Joseph Cherian & Nabhojit Ghosh, will join Swiggy’s New Supply business line.

Swiggy appoints Vishal Bhatia as CEO

Online food delivery start-up Swiggy has appointed Vishal Bhatia as the chief executive officer for its new supply business.The New Supply business line will be focused on Swiggy’s strategy of giving consumers a greater assortment by addressing existing supply gaps in the marketplace,Bhatia comes with 19 years of experience in consumer goods firms like PepsiCo & Britannia.

FSSAI issues guidelines for food recall

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India has asked companies to put in place a proper plan to recall food products from markets, if found unsafe. FSSAI also said it may review the license of the concerned food company if the recall is related to serious health issues. The new guidelines come more than two years after the controversial recall of Maggi noodles.

First Pill with Digital Tracking Device

The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first drug in the United States with a digital ingestion tracking system. This will ensure that patients with mental illness take the medicine prescribed for them. The drug Abilify MyCite, developed by Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd, was first approved by the FDA in 2002 to treat schizophrenia.

MoU Signed Between GoI & Patanjali

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) of Rs 10000 Crore was signed between the Government of India (GoI) and Patanjali at the World Food India 2017. The MoU was signed by Managing Director of Patanjali, Acharya Balkrishna and Harsimrat Kaur Badal, the Union Cabinet Minister of Food Processing in the Government of India. The World Food India 2017 was organised at Delhi’s Vigyan Bhawan.

Investment worth 19 billion dollars

Investment of around 19 billion dollars were committed during the three day mega food event- World Food India. The event achieved a resounding success and saw participation from 60 countries and over 50 global CEOs. This was the first time that India hosted such an event for the food processing sector to strengthen its position as a global food factory.

Yes Bank signs MoU with Government

Yes Bank signed a MoU with the government to provide Rs 1,000 crore financing for food processing projects. Yes Bank said that the funding will be provided to around 100 food processing projects with an average size of Rs 10 crore each. The focus would be on projects across backend infrastructure, cold chain creation of new processing units, expansion of existing units etc.

Modi Inaugurated World Food India 2017

3 : Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the most anticipated International Mega Food event-World Food India 2017. It is the biggest congregation of global investors and business leaders of major food companies. The event is organised by the Food Processing Industries Ministry in Delhi. The three-day event aims to transform food economy and realise the vision of doubling of farmers’ income.

Conference on Consumer Protection

Modi inaugurated 2-day International Conference on Consumer Protection for east, south and Southeast Asian countries in New Delhi. This conference is being hosted by the Department of Consumer Affairs under Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. Theme of this conference is ‘Empowering Consumers in New Markets’.

Kolkata food items have high lead levels

According to Geological Survey of India, Raw food items sold in Kolkata city markets have Lead concentration far above the permissible limit. High concentration of Lead can permanently damage key human organs. Samples of raw food items collected from 12 markets in the city showed a mean Lead (Pb) concentration between 3.78 and 43.35 mg/kg (average 23.56 mg/kg).

3 FDI proposals cleared by DIPP

The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion has approved 3 FDI proposals, including that of Merlin Entertainment-owned Madame Tussauds. Mountain Trail Foods, which operates the Chai Point outlets, has got approval for food retailing. And Kohler India Corp’s proposal for single-brand retail has been approved. Madame Tussauds is expected to open its first museum in India in Delhi.

World Food Day

World Food Day is a day of action dedicated to tackling global hunger. Held annually on 16th October, people from around the world come together to declare their commitment to eradicating worldwide hunger from our lifetime. It promotes worldwide awareness and action for those who suffer from hunger and for the need to ensure food security and nutritious diets for all.

New Bureau of Indian Standards Act

Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution has brought into effect new Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) Act 2016. The Act replaced Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 1986. It aims to help in ease of doing business in the country, enhance ‘Make In India’ campaign and ensure availability of quality products and services to the customers.

International Day of Rural Women

The International Day of Rural Women is observed on October 15 to recognise the services of rural women in food production and food security. This day was first observed on October 15, 2008, after being approved by the United Nations. The 2017 Theme is “Challenges and opportunities in climate-resilient agriculture for gender equality and the empowerment of rural women and girls”

Govt to set up mini food parks

The government will be setting up, mini food parks to raise the processing level. Minister of Food Processing, said all 42 sanctioned mega food parks will be operational by 2019. This will be done under the new Rs. 6,000 crore SAMPADA scheme approved by the government recently, she added.

First test to screen Zika virus in blood

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved for the first time a test for detecting the Zika virus in donated blood. The Zika virus is transmitted primarily by mosquitos (Aedes aegypti), but it can also spread through blood transfusion and sexual contact. Screening blood donations for the Zika virus is critical in preventing infected donations from entering the U.S. blood supply.

Warehousing receipts in e-format

Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan has rolled out negotiable warehousing receipts in an electronic format that farmers can use to avail of bank credit easily. Negotiable warehouse receipt allows transfer of ownership of that commodity stored in a warehouse without having to deliver the physical commodity. These receipts are issued in the negotiable form, making them eligible as collateral for loans.

‘Food Street’ at global food fair

The government has decided to introduce a curated food experience zone ‘Food Street’ at the global food fair in November in New Delhi. The global food event, which is being held in India for the first time, aims to attract more investment in the food processing sector. Chef Sanjeev Kapoor will be the brand ambassador of the event at the global food fair.

Zero Hunger Prog to be launched in Oct

19 : 3 districts – Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh, Koraput in Odisha & Thane in Maharashtra will initiate India’s ambitious ‘Zero Hunger’ program through interventions in farm sector on Oct 16 (World Food Day). The Programme will be initiated by ICAR, ICMR and BICAR. The programme aims to end malnutrition in India by 2022.

US imposes financial sanctions

The United States has slapped strong financial sanctions on Venezuela, barring banks from any new deals with the government. It also prohibits dealings in certain existing bonds owned by the Venezuelan public sector, as well as dividend payments to the government. Venezuela has been engulfed in an economic crisis, featuring skyrocketing inflation and food shortages.

Festival of India

A Festival of India is being organized in Brazil from 31 August-9 September 2017. It will showcase diverse Indian culture, i.e. classical dances, literature, cuisine & Exhibition on Mahatma Gandhi. Bharatnatyam Dance, Kathak Dance, Indian Food Festival, Literary Festival and Exhibition on Mahatma Gandhi are the major events that will be held in cities of Brasilia, Sao Paulo & Rio de Janeiro:

Britannia to set up its largest plant

India’s leading FMCG Britannia Industries would set up its largest plant in Maharashtra in a food park at Ranjangaon. The park would have the largest biscuits manufacturing plant with six lines, along with cake and rusk. The company is also planning to set up a dairy project at the food park with a capacity of seven lakh litres per day.

Morgan Stanley cuts CPI forecast

Global brokerage firm Morgan Stanley has lowered its inflation forecast for 2017 to 3.1% from 3.6% earlier citing relatively benign outcomes of GST & monsoon. Factors that led to revision of forecast were slippage in food inflation year-on-year bases and impact of GST & rise in HRA. For ongoing fiscal, it expects headline CPI at 3.2% from (4% earlier), for 2018-19 to 4.3% from 4.5 previously

FSSAI bans stapler pins in tea bags

Food Safety & Standards Authority of India has banned use of stapler pins in tea bags effective Jan 1, 2018. Use of stapler pins in tea bags poses potential hazard to consumers since any loose staple pin consumed inadvertently with tea may cause a serious health hazard. Tea bag segment is one of the fastest growing segments at 50-60% yoy. Currently, tea bags are either stapled or knotted.

Food for armed forces in high-altitude

DRDO has developed nutritious & protein-rich food for armed forces deployed in high-altitude & snowbound areas. Major food products developed by DRDO include chicken biscuits, protein-rich mutton bar, tulsi bar among others. There is no food production unit in DRDO. However after developing these products production technologies have been transferred to various industries for bulk production

Govt increases import duty on sugar

Government has increased import duty on sugar to 50% from 40%, to restrict cheap inward shipments and maintain domestic prices. Food Ministry had proposed increase in import duty on the grounds that fall in local prices will affect millers’ capacity to pay cane dues to growers. In April this year, govt had allowed import of 5 lakh tonnes of raw sugar at zero duty to boost domestic supply.

Zomato’s 1.7 crore user records stolen.

Food discovery and ordering platform Zomato revealed that about 1.7 crore user records have been stolen from its database. The stolen information has email addresses and hashed passwords of customers. No payment information or credit card data has been stolen. Zomato has attributed human error as the cause of the security breach where an employee’s development account got compromised.

‘Kesar’ mangoes to be sold in Australia

5 : For the first time, Australia will sell ‘Kesar’ variety of Indian mangoes. Kesar mango is grown in the foothills of Girnar in India. The mango is known for its bright orange colored pulp and was given the geographical indication status in 2011.

Global food prices dip to 5-year low in February

Global food prices fell to a nearly five-year low in February this year on increased supply of key food items and strong US dollar, according to the United Nations food agency FAO. Food prices averaged at 179.4 points in February, down from 181.2 points in January and 208.6 points in February 2014, the Food and Agriculture Organisation’s price index showed. According to FAO, international sugar prices fell by 4.9 per cent, cereal prices were down by 3.2 per cent and meat prices declined by 1.4 per cent in February from the January levels.

World Food Prize

Eminent Indian scientist Mr. Sanjaya Rajaram is awarded the World Food Prize in recognition of his significant contributions to the global wheat production.

Sanjaya Rajaram chosen for World Food Prize

Sanjaya Rajaram, veteran plant scientist, has been chosen for this year’s World Food Prize for his “scientific research that led to a prodigious increase in world wheat production. Announcing this M.S. Swaminathan founder of M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) and chairman, global jury for selection of the Food Prize Laureate, told reporters that Dr. Rajaram, now settled for his “outstanding work in the improvement of wheat crop and wheat production in the world”.

US FDA bans the import of products from Ranbaxy’s plant

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) bans the import of products from Ranbaxy’s plant at Toansa unit in Punjab due to manufacturing violation.

WTO agree to provide subsidy on staple food crops

In a major victory for India, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) agrees to allow countries to provide subsidy on staple food crops without threat of punitive action.

Amma canteen helps with hygiene at GH

More than a week after an Amma Canteen was opened at Rajiv Gandhi Hospital (GH), there is visible difference in the hygiene condition on the hospital’s premises. Unlike earlier fewer people consuming food inside the hospital wards. The number of those consuming food inside the wards and in the corridors has reduced after the canteen has opened” said a doctor. Apart from patients’ attentants and visitors, hospital workers too have been found making a beeline to the canteen that was opened on Nov. 20.

2012 World Food Prize

Israeli scientist Dr. Daniel Hillel is chosen for the 2012 World Food Prize. He is chosen for the prestigious award, established in 1987 by Green Revolution champion Norman Borlaug, for pioneering a “radically innovative way of bringing water to crops in arid and dry-land regions”.

FAO forecasts on food production

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) says that the overall forecasts for global food production in 2012 are positive