Nestle opposes FSSAI appeal on revoking Bombay High Court Order on ban
Ashwani Maindola, New Delhi
While submitting before the Supreme Court during a hearing on appeal by the apex food regulator FSSAI against Bombay High Court order setting aside June 5, 2015, order of the regulator on Maggi, Nestle, in a recent hearing, told the apex court that it should not stay the Bombay High Court order that lifted ban on nine variants of Maggi noodles.
In its reply to FSSAI’s appeal against the HC’s August 13 order, Nestle has told the apex court that it has complied with the HC’s direction for retesting of five samples of all variants of its noodles in three accredited laboratories, situated at Hyderabad, Mohali and Jaipur to check the Lead content in the product. It also said that tests done on fresh Maggi samples provided to government approved labs were found safe.
It argued that already testing was carried out in the prescribed labs that were NABL-accredited. "It is only when contamination of food is an imminent threat that immediate order of prohibition can be passed, whereas there was no risk analysis made by the food authorities to determine the extent of damage that would be caused by consumption of the product (when the ban was imposed in June last year)," Nestle said in an affidavit.
Meanwhile, the SC has stayed the NCDRC proceedings in an early hearing but did not stay the testing it has ordered. The apex court, according to sources, ordered testing of all the samples (that ordered by NCDRC in the Class Suite) at labs of Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI) in Mysuru, Karnataka. The results will be submitted to the apex court.
Maggi sales resumed on November 9, 2015, after the tests showed that Lead was within permissible limits. Nestle has resumed production of Maggi noodles at all five of its plants – Punjab, Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Goa and Himachal Pradesh.