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How Are Vegetarian Foods Labeled in India?

July 12, 2019
Question 

Has the Indian government changed the symbol required on vegetarian food product labels from a green dot in a green square to a green triangle in a green square?

Answer 

India’s Food Safety and Standards (Packaging and Labelling) Regulations, 2011, require packages of Vegetarian Food to bear a symbol consisting of a green circle inside a green square. (See Chapter 2 (4) of the regulations for more specifications, such as size requirements.) However, these regulations are currently being updated. As part of the update, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) is separating the regulations for Packaging from those for Labeling.

The Food Safety and Standards (Packaging) Regulations, 2018, came into force on December 24, 2018, and became effective July 1, 2019. (See the PackagingLaw.com article, India’s New Food Packaging Regulations Effective Today, for more information on the new packaging regulations.)

The updated Food Safety and Standards (Labelling and Display) Regulation, 2019, are currently in draft form. The most recent version, published on FSSAI's website this month (July 2019), specifies that packages of Vegetarian Food shall include a symbol that consists of a “green colour filled triangle inside a square with green outline…” (See Chapter II, 4.2.4.) Size requirements are included in the regulation. Comments on draft labeling regulations must be submitted by July 31, 2019.

The current law requires vegetarian food to be labeled with a green dot in a green square. Although, that may change once the new regulations are implemented.