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FSSAI mulls allowing use of ethylene gas for fruits ripening

13,May, 2016

New Delhi, May 12 () Food Safety regulator FSSAI has invited public comments on an amendment to allow use of ethylene gas for ripening of fruits and vegetables.

In a notification, FSSAI said that it has proposed amendment in the regulations of Food Safety and Standards Act, for inclusion of use of ethylene gas for ripening of fruits.

"..Provided that fruits may be artificially ripened by use of Ethylene gas at a concentration upto 100 ppm (0.01 per cent) depending upon the crop, variety and maturity," it said.

Climacteric fruits are able to continue ripening after being picked, a process accelerated by ethylene gas.

It is mostly used in case of banana, as it is picked when green and artificially ripened after shipment by being gassed with ethylene.

Meanwhile, in a separate notification, FSSAI has also proposed to fix new permissible limits of heavy metals in the various food products.

Earlier this week, the FSSAI had issued draft quality regulations and fixed the foreign matter limit at a maximum 3 per cent by weight in the import of pulses.

Foreign matter means anything extraneous other than food grains. It can be inorganic matter like metallic pieces, sand, stones and organic matter consisting of husk, straws, weed seeds and other inedible grains.The presence of foreign matter in food grains is considered as adulteration and the grains could be found unsuitable for human consumption

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