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Is Indian table salt safe to use?

11,July, 2019
 

01/8The compostion of salt!

Recently, the table salt came under the scrutiny of social media and regulatory bodies, when Shankar Gupta, Chairman of Godhum Grains & Farm Products claimed that Ferrocyanide levels were alarmingly high in reputed Indian salt brands. To which, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) and the Indian Medical Association (IMA) reacted and refuted the concerns . Scroll below to know more about Potassium Ferrocyanide and the controversy.

02/8What is Potassium Ferrocyanide?

It is a non-toxic inorganic compound that is potassium salt and forms lemon-yellow monoclinic crystals.

03/8Why this concern was raised?

The concerns rose only after Shiv Shankar Gupta, Chairman of Godhum Grains & Farm Products recently claimed that Potassium Ferrocyanide levels were alarmingly high in reputed Indian salt brands. According to Gupta, a test by American West Analytical Laboratories (AWAL) has revealed that Potassium Ferrocyanide levels are an alarmingly high in Sambhar Refined Salt at 4.71 mg per kg, at 1.85 mg per kg in Tata Salt and 1.90 mg per kg in Tata Salt Lite.

04/8Why is Potassium Ferrocyanide used?

As per a tweet by FSSAI, "Ferrocyanides are used as anti-caking agents in processing of salt and are safe for consumption. Test reports quoted in media have shown its presence well within the limit of 10 mg/kg, as specified by FSSAI. This is less than 14 mg/kg specified by Codex (International Food Standards)."

05/8The controversy

According to the American West Analytical Laboratories, AWAL does not communicate any information to third parties concerning work performed at the laboratory without written permission.

06/8 What companies have to say?

In an official statement, Tata Salt said that its products are safe and harmless. They have called the allegations false and misleading and said that India is one among many countries including the USA, European Union, Australia and New Zealand that has allowed the use of PFC in salt.

07/8What is the right amount of PFC allowed?

The level allowed by FSSAI, an independent statutory authority, under Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India is the lowest among these jurisdictions (10 mg per kg).

08/8Verdict

The use of PFC is allowed in salt and is safe and harmless to the human body when consumed as per approved levels. This is clearly declared in the list of many reputed salt brands in a manner prescribed by the regulations.

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