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A Brief Take on FSSAI Standards for Alcoholic Beverages

calendar30 May, 2020
timeReading Time: 3 Minutes
FSSAI standards for alcoholic beverages

The FSSAI standards for alcoholic beverages got mentioned in a notification released on the 5th of April, 2018 by the food regulator, FSSAI. As per the report of Lancet Study, India’s annual alcohol intake has witnessed a lightning-fast rise of 38% in around 7-8 years. Changes in social norms and development in the acceptability factor have re-ignited the alcoholic beverage market in India. Going through the India alcoholic beverages market study, we found that in the previous few years, changes in the way of living and attitude of people have made alcohol intake more acceptable in society.

FSSAI has given the directions to the manufacturers, marketers as well as various stakeholders in the alcoholic beverages sector to comply with the FSSAI standards for alcoholic beverages. Alcoholic beverages are part of the definition of food as per the FSSAI Act 2006[1]. The food regulatory body, FSSAI, has mapped out the Alcoholic Beverages Standards Regulation, 2018.

Points under Notification regarding FSSAI Standards for Alcoholic Beverages Regulations (Latest Amendments- 2019-20)

  • Initially, the food regulatory government body FSSAI has issued a notification in order to declare the alcoholic beverages standards date of implementation as the 1st of April, 2019.
  • As per the para 3, Annexure 1 of the Alcoholic Beverages Regulations, the implementation date of labeling of Indian brandy as molasses spirit prepared Indian brandy and time period for using unused old labels as well as printed cans in para 4 got intended upto 31st of March, 2020.
  • The apex food regulatory body, FSSAI, has depicted in a notification that it has received the representations from different stakeholders and asked for extensions. It has decided to extend the implementation with regard to Indian brandy (prepared by using molasses) and the usage of unused old labels as well as printed cans.
  • There is a revision in the labeling notification in the finalization of the notification of the draft.
  • FSSAI has elongated the deadline for the implementation part of the Food Safety and Standards Alcoholic Beverages Regulations, 2018 to 31st of March, 2020.

Read our article:FSSAI License for Transporters in India: An Elaborative Overview

New FSSAI Standards for Alcoholic Beverages

  • FSSAI came up with new FSSAI standards for alcoholic beverages to empower consumers by ensuring health as well as safety. A new benchmark for quality was one of the ingredients of FSSAI’s new regulations. Furthermore, it has maintained a balance between Indian standards and the International standards to clear the path for trade activities.
  • Earlier, the standards were only for one alcoholic beverage known as Toddy. New standards have described as well as set guidelines for all alcoholic beverages like Whisky, Vodka, Rum, Gin, Brandy, Beer, Wines, etc.
  • The new standards have specified special requirements in relation to labeling to unbox consumers’ thinking. All the stakeholders have embraced the latest move from FSSAI as they find that the door of possibilities in the less explored sector of alcoholic drinks in India has finally opened.
  • Depending upon their characteristics for implementing and defining the standards easily, the categorization of alcoholic beverages has taken place.

Categorization of Alcoholic Beverages

Categorization of Alcoholic Beverages

Distilled Alcoholic Beverage Category

It defines beverages with their sub-types, which are as follows:-

  • Feni
  • Pot-still distilled spirit
  • Vodka
  • Brandy
  • Whiskey
  • Beer
  • Feni
  • Gin
  • Liquor
  • Rum, and
  • Country Liquors

Wine and Other Fermented Beverages

It includes the standards for-

  • Fortified Wines
  • Sparkling Wines
  • Table Wines
  • Wines from Fruits apart from Grapes

Beer and its Types

It includes standards for Beer types such as-

  • Draught Beer
  • Lager Beer
  • Porter Beer
  • Stout Beer

Labeling Requirements for Alcoholic Beverages

Labeling Requirements for Alcoholic Beverages
  • In the standards, a separate section is available that shows labeling requirements. The essential labeling requirements comprise allergen warning, Alcoholic Content Declaration, Statutory Warning, and Standard Drink Label.
  • The new regulation of FSSAI holds several restrictions on the labeling of alcoholic beverages.
  • FSSAI regulations have strictly prohibited the exhibiting of nutritional details as well as restricted the mentioning of health claims on the label.
  • The use of words like non-intoxicating or words resembling the same meaning has been strictly prohibited.
  • The labels for wine should affirm different types of grapes used, geographical implications, as well as the additives name present in the end product.

Final Words

After the amendments, the FSSAI standards for alcoholic beverages have extended the deadline for the stakeholders. It is mandatory for all the alcoholic beverage businesses to comply with the FSSAI Alcoholic Beverages- Amendment Regulations, 2019 and FSSAI notification on the Standards for Alcoholic Beverages. All the manufacturers, marketers, along with the different stakeholders in the field of alcoholic beverages, should ensure compliance by April 1st, 2019. For more information and any support related to the FSSAI guidelines and FSSAI license, you can take the help of our efficient team at Corpbiz.

Read our article:How to Obtain an FSSAI License in India: Full Guide

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