Preparation time, 'consume within...' details made mandatory in food parcels in Kerala

The Food Safety and Standards Act states that cooked food should be consumed in 2 hours. Photo: iStock/Waqar Hussain

Food parcels from eateries should clearly label the time when the dish was prepared and within what time it should be consumed, said Jafar K Malik, Food Safety Commissioner of Kerala, on Thursday (January 18).
Though the rule already exists, many shop owners are not following it and from now on, it will be strictly implemented, he said in a statement issued today.

The Food Safety and Standards Act stipulates that cooked food should be consumed in 2 hours. The communique comes at a time when cases of food poisoning are increasing in Kerala. 

Last month, the department closed down 148 shawarma outlets due to serious safety violations in food preparation. Fines were also imposed on 308 establishments after a state-wide lighting inspection, and 178 establishments were instructed to make changes to abide by the law. In October, 2023, a youngster died and six others sought treatment after a food poisoning in Kochi.

At the same time, Kerala had topped the national food safety index released by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) in June 2023. Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had said that it was a first for the state and it is a historic achievement, thanks to the various initiatives like the food safety grama panchayat scheme implemented in 140 panchayats and the Safe and Nutritious Food at School project carried out in 500 schools.

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