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BEFORE THE HON’BLE NATIONAL CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL COMMISSION AT NEW DELHI
CONSUMER COMPLAINT NO.870 OF 2015
IN THE MATTER OF:
Union of India

Through Secretary,

Department of Consumer Affairs … Complainant

Versus
Nestle India Limited, Nestle House

Jacaranda Marg, M Block DLF City

Phase II, Gurgaon-122002-05



Haryana … Opponent


COMPLAINT UNDER SECTION 12 OF THE CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT, 1986
THE COMPLAINANT ABOVENAMED STATES AS FOLLOWS:


  1. The Complainant is the Department of Consumer Affairs who has been constrained to file the present complaint to safeguard the interests of millions of consumers in India whose rights as set out in the Consumer Protection Act 1986 have been violated by the Opponent Company, Nestle India Pvt Ltd, by their unfair trade practices as well as defective and hazardous products which have caused injury to millions of consumers resulting in this class action. The Complainant whose primary mandate is consumer protection has taken note of the affirmative misrepresentation on the part of the Opponent as also the omission of important information by the Opponent with respect to products manufactured and sold by the Opponent and generically classified as ‘Prepared dishes and cooking aids’. This makes for a compelling story of trade practices of a large corporation with vast resources taking advantage of unwary consumers. The Complainant asserts on behalf of the consumers that class-wide consumer detriment and injury has occurred on account of the composition and quality of the products namely Maggi Masala Noodles with Tastemaker and Maggi Oats Masala Noodles with Tastemaker, thereby causing a hazard to the public’s health and well-being which is also a violation of their rights under Article 21 of the Constitution of India; as also by the fact of manufacturing and selling Maggi Oat Noodles without approval of the Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSS Authority), while using the approval mark on the packaging, thus indulging in a practice that falsely represented that the product is of a particular standard, in this case, as if approved by the FSS Authority.


The Opponent:-

  1. The Opponent is a company incorporated under the provisions of the Companies Act 1956 having its Registered Office at Jacaranda Marg, M Block DLF City Phase II, Gurgaon-122002-05 Haryana.



  1. The Opponent is a subsidiary of NESTLE S.A. of Switzerland and is carrying on the business of manufacturing and sale of food products in India. The Opponent’s revenues from its domestic sales as reported by the company in its annual financial statements were Rs. 9485,32,00,000 crores in 2014 (Rupees Nine thousand four hundred and eighty five crores and thirty two lakhs only) and Rs. 8753,74,00,000 crores in 2013 (Rupees eight thousand seven hundred and fifty three crores and seventy four lakhs only). The Maggi Noodles, its variants, and products akin to it classified by the Company as ‘Prepared Dishes and Cooking Aids’, accounted for over 30 percent of the gross domestic sales in the last two years of the Opponent, valued at Rs. 2845,59,60,000 crores in 2014 (Two thousand eight hundred and forty five crores and fifty nine lakhs and sixty thousand only) and Rs.2626,12,20,000 in 2013 (Rupees two thousand six hundred and twenty six crores and twelve lakh and twenty thousand only). As a large multinational company manufacturing and selling these products as ‘prepared dishes and cooking aids’ especially by appealing primarily to children, it was incumbent on the Opponent to uphold the right of the consumers to be informed about the quality, quantity, purity and potency. It was the Opponent’s duty to ensure strict compliance with the mandatory safety standards of the products and to ensure the right of the consumers to be protected against the marketing of products that are hazardous. The Opponent’s trade practices for the purpose of promoting the sale of its products, however, were executed through statements both written and by visible representations, including targeted advertising, to represent to the Indian consumers, attributes of the products, that were mis-leading and deceptive. Besides, the Opponent failed to exercise due care and diligence in the production of their product, Maggi Noodles. In a bid to augment their profits, to the tune of Rs. 1184,69,00,000/- (Rupees One thousand one hundred and eighty four crores and sixty nine lakhs) in 2014 alone, the Opponent Company has put to risk the health and well-being of millions of consumers. To add further insult to injury, the Opponent has deliberately misled the consumers of the quality, standard and accreditation/approval of Maggi Noodles.



  1. The present complaint is the first of its kind and this Hon’ble Commission ought to impose a heavy penalty on the Opponent so that it ensures compliance with the law with respect to all its products including Maggi Masala Noodles, which are consumed by millions of people. The filing of the present petition does not however waive any other violations that the Opponent maybe guilty of and is only with respect to the jurisdiction of this Hon’ble Commission under the Consumer Protection Act 1986.

Purpose of filing the captioned consumer complaint:-

  1. The Complainant is constrained to file the present complaint as a representative of the interests of the consumers, in view of the grave unfair trade practice as set out in Section 2 (r) and its related sub-sections of the Consumer Protection Act, as relevant to this complaint, indulged in by the Opponent Company and hazardous and defective goods manufactured and sold by the Opponent to several million consumers in India. The Complainant, being the Department of Consumer Affairs, is mandated to ensure consumer protection and to prevent consumer detriment. This mandate includes the responsibility of preventing unfair trade practices and where such practices have resulted in consumer detriment, to seek appropriate remedy for and on behalf of the consumers. The Complainant urges this complaint on behalf of all the consumers of Maggi products, who had reposed implicit trust in the product; had believed every word of the persuasive advertising that the Opponent Company mounted, and believed that they were indeed feeding their precious children, a safe and healthy product. It is now apparent that Maggi and its variants are neither healthy nor enjoyable. Quite the contrary, they are far from the quality and standard what even the Opponent Company had claimed them to be, while seeking product approval.



  1. In the case of one of its products, the consumers were led to believe that the product Maggi Masala Oats was FSSAI approved, when this was clearly a false representation. This fun food in the backdrop of the class wide injury caused to them as a result of the trade practices followed by the Opponent Company. The Complainant has sought to file this complaint to ensure that in the interest of the public no unsafe or hazardous products are sold by the Opponent Company or any other company; that the Opponent Company ensures the rights of the consumers to be informed as also to be protected; and that the Consumer Protection Act and the Food Safety and Standards Act are strictly complied with by all commercial establishments. Moreover, the Department is keen to safeguard against companies selling defective foodstuff/ other products in utter disregard of the existing laws.



  1. The Complainant is entrusted with the responsibility of protecting the rights and interest of consumers and of promoting larger consumer welfare. Keeping in mind this avowed objective, the present complaint is being filed to uphold and represent the interest of millions of consumers who have through the years been consuming the Opponent Company’s unsafe, hazardous, defective and misbranded products.



  1. It is pertinent to note that the Opponent’s products have been extremely popular amongst children and the younger generation, with many school and college canteens selling the product. As a matter of fact, the Opponent Company’s advertisement campaigns have always been centered on children and mothers and have sought to promote sales on this precious mother and child bond. Children being the major consumers/ end-users of Maggi noodles, it is of utmost importance that the Complainant raises the present issue for adjudication. Moreover, the consumers affected in the present case cut across all social and economic classes. It is also relevant to note, that children are even more vulnerable to unsafe, hazardous and sub-standard food than are adults.



  1. Maggi noodles as stated by the Opponent Company are made of wheat flour, edible vegetable oil, salt, wheat gluten mineral (calcium carbonate) and guar gum. The instant noodles contain a packet of TASTEMAKER that is to be added to the noodles during preparation in boiling water. The TASTEMAKER as declared by the Opponent Company contains a number of ingredients including mixed spices, noodle powder, sugar, edible starch, salt, edible vegetable oil, acidifying agent (Citric Acid), mineral, (Potassium chloride), hydrolyzed groundnut protein color (caramel Iv- Ammonia sulphite process), flavor enhancer (disodium 5- ribonucleotides) and raising agents (sodium hydrogen carbonate).



  1. It is pertinent to mention that the label on the product is deliberately meant to be misleading and false as it does not mention the presence of MSG and in fact goes as far as to say that it has “No added MSG”. It is relevant to point out that the Opponent Company has itself undertaken to remove the misleading label although this attempt to remedy its wrong has been at the cost of millions of consumers who have been misled for many years. The product poses a definite health risk to humans as it contains Lead over thousand times the limit. Moreover, one of the variants of Maggi sold in the market being Maggi Oats Masala Noodles with Tastemaker has been released and sold in the market without getting the requisite risk assessment and product approval.



  1. The Opponent has enjoyed a huge popularity in India and WPP Milward Brown has adjudged Maggi the ‘most powerful brand in India’ in 2014. It has also been named amongst the top five brands in Brand Equity’s most trusted brands of 2014. A wide variety of food products are offered for sale by the Opponent from dairy products such as infant formula, buttermilk, condensed milk to chocolates, baby nutrition food such as Nan Pro, Lactogen, Neslac, instant noodles in various forms, pasta, confectionary, coffee and tea. In 2014 itself, the Opponent earned a profit of Rs 1200 crores (approximately). The Opponent on its own enjoys a dominant 63% market share in the Noodles segment. Especially considering its multinational status and standing, the Opponent ought to have exercised due care and diligence in the manufacture and sale of its products, since consumers tend to have more faith on such companies. The responsibility on the Opponent Company becomes manifold when a substantial chunk of its consumers consists of children, as their health and safety is more fragile and needs a higher level of care.



  1. The cause of action giving rise to the present complainant against the Opponent company is that it has:

  1. indulged in unfair trade practices by false labeling of the Maggi Noodles in as much as it states ‘No added MSG” prominently on the packet, despite the presence of MSG;



  1. sold defective goods to the public by selling Maggi noodles with the presence of Lead;



  1. sold defective goods to the public by selling Maggi noodles with the presence of MSG which is not permissible;



  1. sold goods which will be hazardous to life and safety since the Maggi noodles contain Lead in contravention of all standards relating to safety of such goods as required to be complied with, by or under law;




  1. indulged in unfair trade practices by offering for sale Maggi Oats Masala Noodles with Tastemaker without risk assessment and product approval;




  1. sold defective goods to the public by selling Maggi Oats Noodles without product approval;



  1. sold goods which will be hazardous to life and safety since Maggi Oats noodles with tastemaker has been sold without undertaking risk assessment and product approval;



  1. The Opponent has also willfully misled the public/consumers in the advertising and promotion of the nutritional quality of the Maggi Noodles. Maggi noodles have been advertised as “Health is enjoyable” and has been promoted with the concept of “taste bhi, health bhi” despite containing Lead, with the sole objective of earning unjust profits. Despite the harmful effects of MSG, the Opponent has misled the public by stating that the Maggi Noodles have “no added MSG”. Thus the product, far from being healthy, is in fact injurious and hazardous and still the Opponent at all material times, invariably, projected it as a ‘health product’.



  1. The Opponent has deliberately chosen to implement a health and wellness strategy to reposition their products as a health option with the objective of earning greater profits. It is apparent that health claims drive food sales. If a manufacturer is going to make a claim on a food label, the label must meet certain legal requirements that help consumers make informed choices and ensure that they are not misled. The failure to disclose the presence of risk-increasing ingredients is deceptive and misleading because it conveys to the consumers the impression that their food makes only positive contributions to a diet or does not contain any ingredients at levels that raise the risk of diet related diseases or health conditions.



  1. Further, the Opponent has acted deplorably by manufacturing and selling Maggi Oats Noodles without obtaining the necessary approval and permission and ought to be severely penalized for this action alone. It is apparent that the Opponent has taken advantage of the public’s trust and faith in one of the largest multi-national company at the expense of the consumer’s health and benefit just to reap and multiply profits.

  2. It is pertinent to mention that different State laboratories along the length and breadth of the country have tested random market samples of the Maggi product and over 10 states, based on distinct and independent test results have revealed an overwhelming conclusion that Maggi Noodles with tastemaker is unsafe for human consumption. Pursuant to the test results being made public, even before the Regulator, i.e. FSSAI could take any action against the company or product, the Opponent Company itself recalled all its Maggi products. As a matter of fact, after the recall, rather than preservation or export of the product, the Opponent Company has been destroying the recalled Maggi products. It is curious that the Opponent Company is destroying their own products, which it claims is safe, although the FSSAI has given no such order for its destruction.

Material Facts
The Complainant respectfully craves the attention of this Hon’ble Commission to the following facts:-

  1. The Government of India enacted the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 (hereinafter referred to as ‘FSS Act’) to consolidate the laws relating to food and to establish the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India for laying down scientific standards for the production, manufacture, storage, sale and import of food products. The availability of safe and wholesome food is another focus area of the Act.



  1. The Act, therefore, has been brought into force to harmonize the interests of consumers and manufacturers to ensure food safety; protect the interest of the consumers; ensure safe and wholesome food for the people and, at the same time to ensure the growth of the nascent food processing industry.



  1. The Opponent is required to comply with the provisions of the FSS Act. Instant Noodles are a non-standardized product under the FSS Act. Notwithstanding, the absence of standardized classification for non-standardized product, it was otherwise imperative for the Opponent to ensure that the ingredients of the product are not a catalyst to health hazards. As it so transpired that the Opponent applied for product approval of its Maggi product by declaring in its application for product approval, that its product contains 0.0153 ppm of Lead. It is on the basis of the said unilateral affirmation and declaration that the product received approval from the FSSAI. It is pertinent to note that the certificate of analysis accompanying the application for approval did not mention that the report was with respect to cooked Maggi noodles with the tastemaker. It had failed to mention the presence of MSG in Maggi Noodles. (Copy of the certificate of analysis dated 17-10-2012 along with the packaging/labels of Maggi Noodles is annexed herewith as Annexure A Colly).



  1. The FSSAI issued an advisory on 11th May 2013 specifically stating that all products sought to be sold/manufactured to the public required product approval from the FSS Authority. (True copy of the advisory dated 11-5-2013 is annexed herewith is Annexure B). Despite being fully aware of such an advisory the Opponents began the manufacturing and selling of the Maggi Masala Oat Noodles in July 2014 with utter disregard for the rules and regulations as prescribed, with the sole objective of reaping profits. On 27-8-2014, after the Maggi Oats Noodles was launched, the Opponent Company sought product approval of the product from FSS Authority. For this act alone the Opponent Company ought to be burdened with heavy costs.



  1. On 10.3.2014, the Safety Officer, Barabanki, Uttar Pradesh took samples of Maggi Noodles, produced by the Opponent, which were sent for analysis to the Food Analyst, Gorakhpur Uttar Pradesh. The sample revealed that it was contrary to Regulation 2.2.2 of the Food Safety (Packaging and Labeling Regulations), 2011 that although the product stated that there was “No added MSG” there was MSG in the sample. (Copy of the report dated 26-3-2014 is annexed herewith as Annexure C). Nestle India assailed the said finding and filed an appeal before Designated Officer, Barabanki under Section 40 of the FSS Act on 22-7-2014. (Copy of the appeal filed by the Opponent Company before the Designated Officer, Uttar Pradesh is annexed herewith as Annexure D)



  1. It is pertinent to reiterate that from July 2014, the Opponent Company started selling and manufacturing of “Maggi Oats Masala Noodles with Tastemaker” before getting the requisite product approval. After selling millions of units of Maggi Oats Noodles illegally and without prior approval under Section 22 of the FSS Act, on 27.8.2014 the Opponent applied for product approval in respect of the product titled “Maggi Oats Masala Noodles with tastemaker”. The FSS Authority sought certain clarifications from the company for Safety/risk assessment in respect of the said product on 25-2-2015. The Opponent ignored this letter sent by the FSS Authority. This act was in clear defiance and violation of the FSS Act, for which action alone the Opponent ought to be levied heavy costs. (True copy of letter seeking product approval is Annexed herewith as Annexure E and copy of letter sent by FSS Authority seeking clarifications from the Opponent Company is annexed herewith as Annexure F).



  1. The test results of the sample Maggi Noodles which had been referred to the Central Food Laboratory, Kolkata by the Food Safety Officer, Barabanki, Uttar Pradesh revealed the following (Copy of the results dated 6-4-2015 is annexed herewith as Annexure G):-



No.

Particulars

Lead

Monosodium Glutamate

1.

Report No. CFL /2010/CAR/R-9, dated 6-4-2015

17.20 ppm

Positive



  1. The test results revealed the presence of Lead at 17.2 ppm, which is over 1000 times the limit that had been permitted, i.e. 0.0153 ppm. It was also advised in the said test report that the label “No added MSG” is contrary to the FSS Act and Regulations, as MSG was present in the said sample and the product was held to be unsafe under Section 3 (1)(zz)(v) of the FSS Act. Accordingly, in light of the test results being reconfirmed by the Central Laboratory, Kolkata, the Food Safety Commissioner, Uttar Pradesh on 30-4-2015 directed the opponent to recall the product (batch no. W201:46, 40556640CC) from the market. (Copy of the letter dated 30-4-2015 is annexed herewith as Annexure H).



  1. In the wake of the above developments, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) advised the Commissioner of Food Safety in all states to draw samples of Maggi Noodles and send them for testing at various authorized laboratories in light of the above-mentioned test results. (Copy of the letter dated 25-5-2015 is annexed herewith as Annexure I)



  1. On the request of the Opponent, the FSSAI scheduled a meeting to discuss the Opponent’s compliance with the relevant provisions and regulations of the FSS Act.




  1. The FSSAI received test results from various states which revealed the following (Copy of the various test results of different states is annexed herewith as Annexure J Colly):-



No.

Particulars

Lead

Monosodium Glutamate

1.

Report No.05/SDFTL/May/15-Pauri dated 19-5-2015 –Government of Uttarakhand – Maggi Masala Noodles


Not tested

Positive

2.

Report No/06/ SDFTL/May/15-Pauri dated 20-5-2015 –Government of Uttarakhand – Maggi Masala Noodles


Not tested

Not detected

3.

Report No. FSS/186/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


3.54 ppm

Not detected

4.

Report No. FSS/184/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


3.95 ppm

Not detected

5.

Report No. FSS/187/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


3.60 ppm

Not detected

6.

Report No. FSS/190/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


4.0 ppm

Not detected

7.

Report No. FSS/193/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


3.05 ppm

Not detected

8.

Report No. FSS/194/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


3.89 ppm

Not detected

9.

Report No. FSS/195/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


3.91 ppm

Not detected

10.

Report No. FSS/191/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


4.09 ppm

Positive

3051.24 ppm



11.

Report No. FSS/189/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


4.59 ppm

Positive

1846.3 ppm



12.

Report No. FSS/176/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi


4.0 ppm

Positive

2809.7 ppm



13.

Report No. FSS/192/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi- Maggi Oats Masala Noodles


2.43 ppm

Positive

505.55 ppm



14.

Report No. FSS/185/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi- Maggi Oats Masala Noodles


2.23 ppm

Positive

759.61 ppm



15.

Report No. FSS/188/2015 dated 2-6-2015- Department of Food Safety – Delhi- Maggi Veg Atta Noodles


2.12

Negative

16.

Entry No. 1018 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


3.29 ppm

Positive

17.

Entry No. 1032 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


0.72 ppm

Positive

18.

Entry No. 1034 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat– Maggi Masala Noodles


0.55 ppm

Positive

19.

Entry No. 1037 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


1.79 ppm

Positive

20.

Entry No. 1038 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


4.03 ppm

Positive

21.

Sample with serial no. 23/DO/S.M.C/K-08 from Surat dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


4.07 ppm

Positive

22.

Sample with serial no. 40/FDCA/GUJ/BMC/01/36/2015- from Bhavnagar dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


0.59 ppm

Positive

23.

Sample with serial no. 40/FDCA/GUJ/BMC/02/27/2015 from Bhavnagar dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Oats Masala Noodles


4.26 ppm

Positive

24.

Sample with serial no. GMC/FSO-1/18/2015 from Gandhinagar- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


3.64 ppm

Positive

25.

Entry No. 1042 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Oats Masala Noodles


1.53 ppm

Positive

26.

Entry No. 1036 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Veg Atta Masala Noodles


0.98 ppm

Positive

27.

Report No. Q-2/1461/2015 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


3.90 ppm

Positive

28.

Report No. Q-2/1462/2015 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


5.03 ppm

Positive

29.

Report No. Q-2/1463/2015 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


2.56 ppm

Positive

30.

Report No. Q-2/1464/2015 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


3.37 ppmn

Positive

31.

Report No. Q-2/1465/2015 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


2.88 ppm

Positive

32.

Report No. Q-2/1466/2015 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


3.63 ppm

Positive

33.

Report No. Q-2/1467/2015 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


3.34 ppm

Positive

34.

Report No. Q-2/1468/2015 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Cuppa Noodles


3.47 ppm

Positive

35.

Report No. PHL/FFSA/NG/10/15-16 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


0.71 ppm

Positive

36.

Report No. PHL/FFSA/NG/11/15-16 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Masala Noodles


0.88 ppm

Positive

37.

Report No. PHL/FFSA/NG/12/15-16 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Veg Atta Masala Noodles


2.54 ppm

Positive

38.

Report No. PHL/FFSA/NG/13/15-16 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Oats Masala Noodles


0.99 ppm

Positive

39.

Report No. PHL/FFSA/NG/14/15-16 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Oats Masala Noodles


1.40 ppm

Positive


40.

Report No. PHL/FFSA/NG/15/15-16 dated 3-6-2015- Government of Gujarat – Maggi Oats Masala Noodles


1.02 ppm

Positive

41.

Report No. SUR-218/2015-16 dated 4-6-2015 - Government of Tamil Nadu – Maggi Masala Noodles


5.00 ppm




42.

Report No. SUR-219/2015-16 dated 4-6-2015 - Government of Tamil Nadu – Maggi Masala Noodles –


4.8 ppm




43.

Report No. SUR-220/2015-16 dated 4-6-2015 - Government of Tamil Nadu – Maggi Masala Noodles –


5.2 ppm




44.

Report No. SUR-221/2015-16 dated 4-6-2015 - Government of Tamil Nadu – Maggi Masala Noodles


6.4 ppm




45.

Report No. SUR-223/2015-16 dated 4-6-2015 – Government of Tamil Nadu – Maggi Masala Noodles


4 ppm

Positive

46.

Report No. SUR-224/2015-16 dated 4-6-2015 – Government of Tamil Nadu – Maggi Masala Noodles

5.2 ppm




47.

Report of Guwahati, Assam





Positive

48.

Report No. B-2250/15 from Sterling Test House, Kerala


Noodles-0.89

Enhancer -0.22



NA

49.

Report No. B -2251/15 from Sterling test House, Kerala

Noodles-0.13

Enhancer-0.10



NA

50.

Report No. B -2254/15 from Sterling test House, Kerala

Noodles-0.08

Tastemaker

Not detected


NA

51.

Report No. B -2252/15 from Sterling test House, Kerala

Noodles-0.07

Enhancer-0.14



NA

52.

Report No. B-2253/15 from Sterling test House, Kerala

Noodles-0.21

Enhancer-0.48



NA

53.

Report No. 04234/15-16 from Choksi Laboratory, India

0.2

Not Detected



  1. On 4-6-2015, the States of Gujarat & Assam banned Maggi Masala Noodles for a period of one month as they were found unsafe. Similarly the State of Meghalaya, Punjab, Maharastra, Nagaland and Telangana directed the Opponent Company to recall all the variants of Maggi Masala Noodles forthwith. (Copy of the various orders passed by the Safety Commissioners in annexed herewith as Annexure K Colly).



  1. On the evening of 4-6-2015, the Opponent Company held a Press Conference where they announced that they are recalling all packets of Maggi Noodles product from the market. (True copy of the news report is being annexed herewith as Annexure L).



  1. In light of the alarming sample results undertaken by various states namely Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and after providing an opportunity of being heard, the FSS Authority on 5-6-2015 directed the Opponents to comply with the following (Copy of the order dated 5-6-2015 is enclosed as Annexure M) :-

• sought a recall on all the nine variants of Maggi Noodles immediately and stop further production, processing, distribution and sale of the said product

• Withdraw and recall food product Maggi Oats Masala Noodles with tastemaker for which risk safety assessment had not been undertaken and product approval not granted



• As agreed by the Company, to rectify the label and remove “no added MSG” and comply with all the Food Safety (Packaging and Labeling Regulations)

  • To withdraw any other products falling under Section 22 of the Act produced by the opponent for which risk assessment has not been undertaken by way of grant of product approval or No Objection certificate by the FSS Authority;

  • Take appropriate action to ensure safety of all its obligations as cast under Section 26 of the FSS Act.



  1. That it is pertinent to mention that the State of Andhra Pradesh collected samples from across the state and conducted independent testing of Maggi Noodles which revealed that the Opponent had again misled the public since the samples contained monosodium glutamate contrary to Section 23 of the FSS Act and Regulation 2.2.1.3 of the FSS (Packaging and Labeling) Regulation 2011 and contained Lead in excess as detailed below (Copy of the Reports of State of Andhra Pradesh is annexed herewith as Annexure N):-




1.

Report No. 713/2015-16 from Food Safety Officer, Elaru, Telangana

0.228 ppm

Present

2.

Report No. 180/2015-16 from Food Safety Officer, Telangana

0.496 ppm

Present

3.

Report No. 181/2015-16 from Food Safety Officer, Telangana

1.274 ppm

Present

4.

Report No. 182/2015-16 from Food Safety Officer, Telangana

2.373 ppm

Present

5.

Report No. 183/2015-16 from Food Sfety Officer, Telangana

1.167 ppm

Present

6.

Report No. 184/2015-16 from Food Safety Officer, Telangana

1.878 ppm

present

7.

Report No. 185/2015-16 from Foo

1.683 ppm

present

8.

Report No. 171/2015-16 from Food Safety Officer, Telangana

0.264 ppm

present

9.

Report No. 172/2015-16 from Food Safety Officer, Telangana

0.044 ppm

Present

32. The Opponent challenged the above-mentioned order before the Hon’ble Bombay High court in W.P No. 1688 of 2015 entitled M/S Nestle India Limited vs. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India & others. The said matter came up on 12th June 2015, where the Hon’ble Court granted the FSSAI the liberty to take all actions permissible in law in case the Opponent has not withdrawn the products of the shelf as has been undertaken by the Opponent. It is pertinent to mention that the Opponent Company has agreed to recall their products in light of the Maggi noodles being defective and hazardous (True copy of the order dated 12-6-2015 is annexed herewith as Annexure O)

Submissions:-

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