The government will review reports about the presence of “higher” level of lead and a food additive in Nestle’s Maggi noodles, Union Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said today.
“We will review the reports of higher monosodium glutamate (MSG) found in Nestle’s Maggi noodles. We will look into the matter and decide on a course of action after the investigation,” Paswan said.
The UP FDA had last month asked Nestle India to withdraw a batch of Maggi noodles “which were manufactured in February 2014” after it found high levels of added MSG, a flavour enhancer, in the noodles and lead beyond legal limits.
On the performance of his ministry in last one year, Paswan said the Centre has decided to reimburse the amount of value cut on Minimum Support Price (MSP), if any imposed, to the states so that farmers get full MSP even for shrivelled and broken wheat grains or having lustre loss.
“In order to give relief to the farmers affected by unseasonal rains and to save them from distress sale of wheat, we have decided to relax the quality norms for procurement,” the minister said.
Paswan said with a view to ensure MSP payment to more number of paddy farmers, the millers’ levy on rice has been brought down to 25 per cent in the kharif marketing season 2014-15, and that government has decided to abolish it from October this year.
“This will save farmers from exploitation and they will not depend on millers for selling their paddy,” he said.
Paswan said due to progressive procurement from farmers, the stock of food grains in central pool as on April 1, reached to 343.15 lakh tonne against the minimum buffer norms of 210.40 lakh tonne.
On strengthening the quality assurance regime for goods and services in the country, the minister said the amendments to the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) Act has been finalised.
“We are setting up five new BIS labs by March 2016, besides modernising the existing labs. We have also launched simplified conformity schemes so that the industry can adopt the quality standards with ease and manufacture standardised products in the country,” he added.