Published On: Tue, Feb 4th, 2014

Standards for pigments in food grade plastics to be revised

ETAD ready to extent support to BIS in framing stringent standards in line with global norms for dyes and pigments industry

Standards for pigments in food grade plastics to be revised

Standards for pigments in food grade plastics to be revised

The industry will soon have revised BIS standard for using colourants and pigments in food grade plastics, according to Chitra Gupta, Secretary PCD12, Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), who was addressing an event organised by the Ecological and Toxicological Association of Dyes and Organic Pigments Manufacturers (ETAD) in Mumbai.

The present standard, IS 9833, was first published in 1981 to ensure that manufacturers of food packaging materials use pigments and colorants which are not harmful to the consumers as there is a possibility of migration colours & pigments (used in the packaging material) into the food product. After more than 30 years, BIS has started the work on revision of this standard two years back to keep pace with the changing environment.

“The revised standards should be out in next few days, as it is in the printing stage. In the new standard, the list of the pigments has been increased keeping in view the latest trend. Test methods for measuring heavy metals and amines have also been included in it. The new standard is more stringent and is based on international standards such as US FDA, EC Directives, etc,” said Gupta.

ETAD, headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, coordinates the efforts of its members to minimise any possible adverse impact of organic colorants on health and the environment. Against this background, ETAD organised a conference on ‘Product stewardship & safety related issues, regulation and compliance’ on January 30, 2014 in Mumbai.

Ravi Kapoor, President, ETAD, and MD, Heubach Colour Pvt Ltd, said, “ETAD can extend all possible help to BIS for formulating regulations and standards in India, which are safe and realistic in lines with global regulations.”

According to Ulhas Nimkar, CEO, NimkarTek Textiles Services, regulations have become more dynamic with NGOs and consumer groups raising the safety bar. “Manufacturing have been moving from developed countries to developing/emerging markets where regulations are not as stringent as in the developed countries. Now, even emerging markets are adopting stringent regulations, which may not be the same in every countries (or even in states/provinces within a country). Though talks of harmonisation is good in theory, in practice it is not easy,” he added.

Nimkar feels that operating business in these conditions is a challenges task for companies today.Other speakers at the event included Dr Walther Hofherr, Executive Director, ETAD; Dr Clemens Grund, Vice President, ETAD and Sanjeev Bansal, Technical Director Packaging & Narrow Web, Flint Group India Pvt Ltd.

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