CHENNAI: Maggi noodles has passed all the safety tests ordered by the Supreme Court and the National Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission (NCDRC), according to a Nestle India statement on Monday.
According to the company, all tests conducted on 29 samples of the instant noodles by the Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI) laboratory in Mysuru came out negative for any excess lead or artificial monosodium glutamate (MSG) content.
“Every single sample was found compliant. The CFTRI has clarified that glutamic acid can be due to presence of ingredients like tomatoes, Cheese, Hydrolyzed Plant Protein, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein etc and has further stated that there are no analytical methods to distinguish between naturally present glutamic acid and additive MSG”, Nestle India added.
The report should relieve pressure on the maker of the most popular noodles brand in the country, which has been struggling for nearly a year to prove the safety of its products. The trouble began when lead and MSG content above permitted limits was detected in samples of Maggi Noodles in tests conducted by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India.
Maggi remained off the shelves between June and October 2015. Nestle India took significant losses due to the ban, registering a Rs 64 crore net loss during the July-September last year.
The continuing doubts over the safety of the brand saw the SC order laboratory testing of 16 Maggi noodle samples in addition to 13 samples collected by government authorities earlier. An NCDRC bench also ordered a retest of Maggi noodles, collected from nine batches, in the National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories - an accredited CFTRI laboratory in Mysuru.
The tests ordered by the SC was to determine level of many safety parameters like metal contaminants, crop contaminants, and other hazardous substances, including lead and MSG, while the NCDRC confined itself to directing tests for lead and MSG.
“In addition to the recent CFTRI reports addressing clarification sought by the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, and the tests conducted as per orders passed by the Hon’ble Bombay High Court, over 3,500 tests have been conducted at internal and external accredited labs. These include several other national food authorities including the USA, UK, Singapore and Australia, among others,” Nestle pointed out.
The Maggi brand contributes Rs 2,500 crore of Nestle India’s Rs 9,800 annual sales.