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Maggi fiasco: Consultant says Nestle should sue Indian govt

The Bombay High Court’s verdict today, setting aside the decision of the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) to ban Nestle’s iconic Maggi noodles brings relief to FMCG company.

The Bombay High Court’s verdict today, setting aside the decision of the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) to ban Nestle’s iconic Maggi noodles brings relief to FMCG company.

But it raises questions over the manner in which FSSAI handled the issue: for instance, while the government had appeared to take a tough stance, the FSSAI lawyer and even the food minister appeared to be welcoming today’s judgment.

In an interview with CNBC-TV18, industry consultant Sunil Alagh slammed the FSSAI’s decision to ban the product, and said its testing process, which showed it contained high levels of MSG and lead, was likely flawed.

“There is an acute need to streamline testing processes in the country,” he said. “If this was the US, the company would’ve sued the government for billions of dollars [for harming its reputation].”

Former FSSAI Director Pradip Chakraborty, who had approved Maggi Noodles during testing in 2013, agreed with Alagh’s contention and said food testing labs in the country need to be strengthened.

“It (the banning episode) was high handed and done in a hurry. FSSAI should have adhered to principles of natural justice and served a notice to Nestle [if it found harmful ingredients above permissible limits,” he said.

More to come.

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