The new food standards set by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) come into effect from today, 1 January 2019. The FSSAI has said microbiological standards for fruit and vegetables and their products, as also tolerance limit of antibiotics and pharmacology active substances, would come into force on Tuesday.

In a statement issued on Monday, the FSSAI said food businesses were usually provided at least six months time for transition before new food standards were effected. And the date of effect of standards is either January 1 or July 1.

Key new food standards coming into force from 1 January, 2019 include:

* Standards for all pulses, whole and decorticated pearl millet grains, de-germedmaize flour and maize grit, couscous, tempe, textured soy protein, sago flour, bee wax and royal jelly

* Microbiological standards for fruits and vegetables and their products.

* All provisions of organic food regulations.

* Standards for honey,except few parameters where test methods are being validated.

The statement also said standards for alcoholic beverages would come into force on April 1, 2019, to coincide with financial year requirements of excise laws.

Food fortification regulations will come into force on July 1, 2019.

According to the statement, the regulations on advertising and claims, packaging and labelling requirements of blended edible vegetable oils will come into force on July 1, 2019.

It also said as many as 27 new regulations for food standards were notified in 2018.

The statement said new standards for fruits and vegetables, including canned tomato, jam, jelly and marmalade, which were notified earlier had come into effect on 1 July 2018, as did revised standards for milk and milk products. The compliance of labelling requirement for frozen dessert would, unless reviewed, apply from 1 July, 2019.

To put an end to the use of packaging material causing health risks, FSSAI has banned the use of plastic used in packaging of food items, and also prohibited the use of recycled plastic or newspaper and magazine pages used in packaging several food items. The regulations will come into effect from 1 July 2019, with the new rules replacing the Food Safety and Standards (Packaging and Labelling) Regulations, 2011.