IASCLUB PIB News Summary : 07 June 2019

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Dr. Harsh Vardhan inaugurates first-ever World Food Safety Day

First-ever World Food Safety Day being celebrated by Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), here today.

  • The theme for this day was ‘food safety, everyone’s business.
  • Harsh Vardhan said that Bapu’s philosophy on food and health is relevant even today. He advocated a simple, whole-foods, plant-based diet, regular fasting and physical exercise for health benefits, which was the inspiration behind the Swasth Bharat Yatra of FSSAI.
  • Harsh Vardhan further stated that people should adopt Gandhiji’s messages of eating less, eating safe and healthy food, and also reducing waste and sharing surplus food.

State Food Safety Index:

  • In an effort to galvanize states to work towards ensuring safe food for citizens, FSSAI has developed the first State Food Safety Index (SFSI) to measure the performance of States on five parameters of food safety.
  • The categories included Human Resources and Institutional Arrangements, Compliance, Food Testing- Infrastructure and Surveillance, Training and Capacity Building and Consumer Empowerment.
  • States such as Bihar, Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh followed close behind.
  • Following the certification of several ‘Clean Street Food Hubs’ in several cities based on third-party audits and training of street food vendors, now Golden Temple Street, Amritsar has been also recognized as a ‘Clean Street Food Hub’.
  • Harsh Vardhan launched a new-age, hand-held battery operated device called ‘Raman 1.0. This device performs rapid detection (in less than 1 minute) of economically driven adulteration in edible oils, fats and ghee. The equipment tests more than 250 samples per battery charge, collects and stores data on the cloud using a smart device.
  • An innovative solution to take food safety to schools, called the ‘Food Safety Magic Box’ was also launched by Dr. Harsh Vardhan. This do-it-yourself food testing kit comprises a manual and equipment to check for food adulterants, which schoolchildren can use in their classroom laboratories. This kit is also useful for frontline health workers.
  • Twenty kits were distributed to Primary Health Centres and Government schools in Delhi with the support of the Delhi Food Safety Department.

Eat Right Awards:

  • FSSAI has instituted the ‘Eat Right Awards’ to recognize the contribution of food companies and individuals to empower citizens to choose safe and healthy food options, which would help improve their health and well-being.
  • A Web-resource online Library of FSSAI was also launched. This library hosts informative and interesting videos on topics such as food adulteration, eating a balanced diet, fortified foods etc. This can be accessed at fssai.gov.in/videolibrary.

Nominations for National Communal Harmony Awards open till June 30, 2019 

Nominations for the National Communal Harmony Awards-2019 are being invited from eligible individuals and organizations for their outstanding contribution for promotion of communal harmony and national integration.

More in news:

  • The National Communal Harmony Awards have been instituted by the National Foundation for Communal Harmony (NFCH), an autonomous body under the Union Ministry of Home Affairs.
  • The National Communal Harmony Awards, 2019 consist of a citation each and a cash prize of Rs. 5 lakh in the individual category and Rs. 10 lakh  in the Organization category.
  • Individuals  who have worked in the area of national integration and communal harmony for a minimum period of ten years is eligible for consideration of  the Award  while Organizations will be adjudged over a five years’ work in the field of promotion of national integration and communal harmony.

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