Food Safety and Standards Authority of India publish standards for Alcohol-Free Beer

By Shubhi Mishra

The Government of India’s (GOI) Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has issued a directive to operationalise certain provisions of the draft Food Safety and Standards (Alcoholic Beverages) Amendment Regulations, 2020. The provisions include the addition of alcohol-free beer as a separate product category.

According to the directive, alcohol-free beer (alcohol by volume 0.0 percent), shall comply with the limits specified for regular beer for all other parameters. FSSAI also permitted the use of new colours and additives in distilled spirituous beverages, as per the draft Food Safety and Standards (Food Product Standard and Food Additive) Amendment Regulations, 2020.

UKIBC, on behalf of the UK food and drink companies, engaged with FSSAI officials on several occasions, including on the publication of the alcohol-free beer.

FSSAI’s forward-looking approach has resulted in the final publication of the subject standards, which will directly benefit the national and international businesses active in the said category.

The inclusion of alcohol-free beer category in FSSAI standards will remove any ambiguity with regards to its classification/nomenclature, which was leading to delays in the introduction of new to market products from both national and international businesses, due to the lack of appropriate definitions and standards. This positive change is reflective of a forward-looking approach of the Indian authorities and their willingness to engage with UKIBC.

According to the FSSAI Food Categorisation System, distilled spirituous beverages include beverages containing more than 15 percent alcohol. “Distilled Spirituous Beverages”, in column 3, after the food additive “RIBOFLAVINS” and the entries relating there to, the following food additives and entries shall be inserted in column (1) to (6), namely:-

For more technical details related to the subject announcement and others contact Shubhi Mishra, Head Food and Drink at UKIBC: shubhi.mishra@ukibc.com.


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