In the Global Ayush Investment & Innovation Summit which concluded on April 22, government had announced a special Ayush mark for Ayush products, to increase global confidence in the quality of such products.
In the summit, a new category named ‘Ayush Aahar’ was announced which will greatly facilitate the producers of herbal nutritional supplements.
As a step in that direction, Ministry of Ayush and Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) formulated regulations of safety & quality standards for food products under ‘Ayurveda Aahara’ category. This initiative will further boost the Ayush sector which is projected to reach 23 billion US dollars by the end of this year, and will position India as a custodian of Ayush system.
Standards for ‘Ayurveda Aahara’
The standards will ensure manufacturing of quality Ayurveda food products and help in expanding the international market for Make-In-India products.
According to the regulation, manufacturing and marketing of ‘Ayurveda Aahara’ products will now adhere to strict Food Safety and Standards (Ayurveda Aahara) Regulations, 2022 rules and will be available in market only after license/approval from FSSAI. A special logo has been created for “Ayurveda Aahara” category, which will enable easier identification and reinforce quality in Ayurveda food products.
What constitutes Ayurveda Aahara
According to the regulations, all food prepared in accordance with the recipes/ingredients/processes described in the authoritative books of Ayurveda will be considered as “Ayurveda Aahara”.
The labelling of ‘Ayurveda Aahara’ shall specify the intended purpose, the target consumer group, recommended duration of use and other specific requirements. Health claims and disease risk reduction claims for the different categories of ‘Ayurveda Aahara’ and their approval process shall be in accordance with the requirements specified in regulations.
However, ‘Ayurveda Aahara’ will not include Ayurvedic drugs or proprietary Ayurvedic medicines and medicinal products, cosmetics, narcotic or psychotropic substances and herbs. Further, Ayurveda Aahara is also not recommended to young children below age 2 years.
‘Ayurveda Aahara’ needs prior approval, the same shall be in accordance with the Food Safety and Standards (Approval for Non-Specific Food and Food Ingredients) Regulation, 2017.
FSSAI shall constitute an Expert Committee under the Ministry of Ayush consisting of relevant experts including representatives of FSSAI for providing recommendation on approval of claims and products.
Food business operators should adhere to quality parameters for the ingredients as per the criteria defined under Food Safety and Standards Regulations, relevant BIS specifications.
The production of Ayush medicines, supplements and cosmetics is witnessing an unprecedented growth. Total Ayush market value has grown exponentially from Rs. 22,000 crores in 2014 to Rs. 1.14 Lakh crores. The recently held Global Ayush Investment & Innovation Summit attracted letter of intents (LoIs) worth over Rs 9,000 crore to the Ayush sector in just three days.
Government along with the World Health Organization (WHO) is establishing the world’s first and only Global Centre for Traditional Medicine (WHO GCTM) in Jamnagar, Gujarat.