Kohima: Following the recent viral videos of alleged plastic rice in Dimapur which led to shops being sealed, Principal Secretary and Commissioner of Food Safety, Amardeep Singh Bhatia IAS, on Monday said that reports of the tested rice sample are as per the “standardised parameters”.

Earlier, the alleged plastic rice was collected and sent for testing to the State Public Health Laboratory by the Food Safety Officer, Dimapur.

The Food Safety Commissioner informed that as per the Food Analyst report, the rice sample tested indicated the presence of fortificants in the rice, thereby confirming that it was fortified rice. “Further, microscopic examination of rice kernels shows clusters of rice starch of oryza sativa species (natural rice origin) and do not show any form of adulterant (plastic) mixture as alleged in the viral video,” an official statement said.

The tested rice sample is said to be as per the standardized parameters and is within the prescribed limit under Regulation No.2.4.6: (24) of Food Safety and Standards (Food Products and Food Additives) Regulations 2011.

It may be informed that fortification of food is standardized and operationalized under Food Safety & Standards (Fortification of Foods) Regulations, 2017. Rice can be fortified using dusting, coating or extrusion technology, where the milled broken rice is pulverised and mixed with vitamins and minerals resulting in fortified rice kernels ( Section 4.4 of Guidebook on Food Fortification, FSSAI), it said.

Further, it said that under Food Safety & Standards (Fortification of Foods) Regulations, 2017 Every package of fortified food shall carry the words “fortified with…..(name of the fortificant)” and the logo (Plus F) as specified in Schedule II of the Regulations on the label.

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