Friday, January 18, 2019


Good food, providing good health, focus of third Nutrition Summit India
Thursday, 19 April, 2018, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Shraddha Joshi and Subhashri Iyer, Mumbai
Good food, which provides good health and prevents diseases, was the focus of the third annual Nutrition Summit India, which commenced in Mumbai and shared insight into strategies, regulatory updates, innovation and technological advancements for the nutraceutical, functional foods, dietary supplements and health foods industry.

This was stated by Dr B Sesikeran, chairperson, member of scientific panel on Nutraceutical, FSSAI, in his opening remarks on the first day of the two-day summit. He said, “The Nutrition Summit focuses on the need for new regulations and new products.”

“Centuries ago, we ate directly from trees. Now we eat out of boxes. Nowadays, consumers look for quick solutions. For instance, grab a bite is the food consumption pattern these days which is a matter of concern,” Sesikeran added.   

“Thus, proper regulations, which throw light on safety and efficacy, is need of the hour. The younger generation is now becoming aware of traditional foods and is looking for novel foods with better ingredients,” he said.

Ruedi Duss, global business and marketing manager, DSM Nutritional Products Ltd Switzerland, made the presentation on Science and innovation: Increasing our focus platelet aggregation.

He gave a detailed presentation comparing European and Indian labelling regulations and how health claims and health benefits are the two key choices that should be looked into for assembling a health claim dossier.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has the most stringent labelling regulations in the world, so the consumers are not misled by exaggerated or untruthful claims. India, is still working on it, and their regulations are not yet clear to the industry.

Himanish Das, associate vice-president, quality assurance (QA), research and development (R&D) and compliance, Emami Agrotech Ltd, made a presentation on the lack of awareness of food safety challenges in India.

He added, “India is the second largest producer of food, and the Indian food industry ranks fifth in the world. Food safety importance depends on augmented urbanisation, climatic change and globalisation.”

“However, there is inequality of food safety. This can be termed as people of low- income groups in various countries are especially susceptible to the food hazards,” Das stated, adding that food safety depended on the four pillars of food security, namely food utilisation, food availability, food access and food stability.

A highlight of the summit, organised by Inventicon Business Intelligence, was the Guru panel discussion on FSSAI norms for Nutraceuticals and functional foods. It was moderated by Sesikeran.

The panel comprised V S Reddy, managing director, British Biologicals; Vaibhav Kulkarni, director and senior leadership team, member, Abbott Nutrition Regulatory Affairs, Abbott Healthcare Pvt Ltd, and chairman, technical and regulatory committee and board member, Health and Dietary Supplements Authority (HADSA), and Sanjaya Mariwala, managing director, OmniActive Health Technologies Ltd.

They discussed how new the regulations on nutraceuticals, labelling, packaging and advertising and claims are creating a lot of confusion in the industry. There are few critical aspects that are creating difficulties in the industry.

The regulations need to be navigated well and need to be more flexible in nature. Specifically mentioning nutraceutical regulations, like the other regulations related to food and beverages, these regulations also need to be frequently reviewed.

Another important issue raised was the timeliness for putting out these regulations. The panellists said either these regulation should be out at one time or the industry be given sufficient time to adapt to it.

Another presentation was on India’s first plug-and-play integrated nutraceutical park by Amit Srivastava, head, business development and nutraceuticals portfolio, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, and advisor to India’s first plug-and-play nutraceutical park.

He said, “India’s first integrated nutraceutical park has been ranked as the best investment destination in India by World Bank and the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Government of India, and is situated in Visakhapatnam.”

“It is a pre-built manufacturing park, i e plug and play park. Its facilities include capital-intensive feeder facilities, National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories- (NABL) certified lab complex and finished goods warehousing facilities,” Srivastava said.

“Spread across 100 acre, the park will be inaugurated in October 2018 by prime minister Narendra Modi. However, the global launch for this park is slated to take place at Vitafoods Europe which will held at Palexpo, Geneva between May 15 and 17. There is no such dedicated nutraceutical park in world.”

This was followed by a panel discussion on using fortification to make an impact on India’s nutritional challenges. It focused on fortification of products with the micronutrients lacking in Indian diets, fortifying products with micronutrients, selling smaller packets and making them affordable.

There was a detailed discussion on food fortification standards operationalised by FSSAI. The panel, which was moderated by Kulkarni, comprised Madhavi Trivedi, associate director, nutrition and scientific affairs, Kellogg India Private Limited; Ajit Lagoo, vice-president, business development, Envirocare Labs Pvt Ltd, and Das.

There were presentations on other topics, including Can probiotics improve health outcomes for undernourished individuals? by Neerja Hajela, head science, Yakult Danone India Private Ltd; India nutraceutical market outlook by Hemant Dande, president and chief operating officer, Raptakos Supplements, Brett & Co Ltd, and Strategies and technological advancements for nutraceutical and herbal dietary supplements: Advantage India by Babu U V, head, photochemistry R&D, The Himalaya Drug Company.
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