NEW DELHI : India’s food regulator, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), has finally cracked the whip on at least four companies that were making false claims of their products in the misleading advertisements as the best for health. The companies were forced to either withdraw their advertisements or modify them.
These firms included Jivo Wellness Private Ltd that was advertising that Canola oil can prevent diabetes and heart diseases with a private hospital putting its seal, while the KC Foods from Jammu and Kashmir was advertising its digestive biscuits as the best in the market due to the highest content of whole wheat flour.
The firms pulled up include Chemical resources in Maharashtra for the Furocycst pills meant for ovarian cysts. It was making claims that the drug contents the US-patented ingredients with no side-effects and that 94% of patients reported positive results. The apex food regulator took action after receiving a complaint from the GAMA (Grievances against Misleading Advertisements), a web portal launched by the Department of Consumer Affairs last year.
Only recently, the FSSAI asked its central licensing authority to send a show-cause notice to Yoga guru Ramdev’s Patanjali group over complaints of misleading advertisements on mustard oil it sells.
Analysts say misleading advertisements are notoriously common in India and easy to get away with. FSSAI has approached the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), a private institution, to join forces with it to clamp down on false food and beverages commercials.