Social activists working among the farming community, led by Kavitha Kuruganti, have condemned the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) draft regulations on genetically modified (GM) food as ‘unacceptable.’
According to the Coalition for GM-Free India, which Kuruganti represents ‘FSSAI should explicitly state that GM foods will not be allowed into India either through production or imports, ‘Any kind of GM food in India is a threat to the health of our people, to our environment, and to the diverse food cultures of India,’ asserted Kuruganti, who is known for having the court revoke the India registration certification on PepsiCo’s Lay’s potato variety. ‘FSSAI is attempting to get around all of this,’ she explained.
The FSSAI recently released a preliminary version of draft regulations for GM food, proposing that all food products containing individual genetically engineered ingredients of 1% or more be labelled as ‘Contains genetically modified organism (GMO)/Ingredients derived from GMO.’ Activists interpreted this as tacit approval to import genetically modified foods rather than prohibiting them.
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