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Trouble for Maggi again? FSSAI challenges Bombay HC order in Maggi noodles case

New Delhi: Food regulator FSSAI today moved the Supreme Court against the Bombay High Court order in the Maggi noodles case seeking expunging of certain adverse remarks made against it.

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) approached the apex court, terming the High Court’s August 13 order as “erroneous” and questioned the sanctity of the samples provided for re-test to government-approved labs.

In its petition, FSSAI has contended that the High Court “erred” by asking Nestle, the Indian arm of the Swiss company itself, to provide the fresh samples instead of asking a neutral authority to do so. The petition also sought expunging of adverse remarks made against FSSAI officials by the High Court.

It also maintained that the Authority should be allowed to use labs under the relevant law without insistence being placed on using only the government-accredited labs which were few and far between, FSSAI sources said. Earlier, the High Court had quashed the orders of FSSAI and Maharashtra food regulator FDA, which had banned nine variants of Maggi noodles in the country.

It had said that the principles of natural justice were not followed in executing the ban as the manufacturer was not given a hearing. The court had allowed Nestle to go in for fresh testing of five samples of each variant of the noodles in three independent laboratories in Punjab, Hyderabad and Jaipur which were accredited with National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL).

It had clarified that these samples would be taken out of the 750 samples preserved by the company following the ban and if lead content was found below permissible limits by the three labs, Nestle India will be allowed to manufacture Maggi noodles.