The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has issued a clarification to its regulations restricting the use of so-called heme iron in food and food products.
Heme iron, which is derived chiefly from animal foods, has been associated with increased risks of heart disease, stroke, cancer and other adverse health consequences. However, India’s food regulations previously permitted the use of iron as a food ingredient, regardless of its source.
Published in late May, the FSSAI Direction expressly prohibits the use of heme irons “shall not be used as a source of Iron (Fe) in any form in any article of food.” The restriction is imposed with immediate effect.
The text of the FSSAI Direction banning the use of heme iron is available here.