Wrapping food in Newspaper
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) restricted the use of newspapers and packaging material saying that consumption of food wrapped in newspapers was “injurious to health, even if the food had been cooked hygienically. Indians are being slowly poisoned due to newspapers being widely used as a food packaging material by small hotels, vendors, and also in homes in lieu of absorbent paper.”
Wrapping food in the newspaper is harmful. The ink contains heavy metals like lead, cadmium, and graphite which have an adverse effect on health. The food regulator said the chemicals in newspaper ink contain harmful colors, pigments, additives, and preservatives. “Besides chemical contaminants, the presence of pathogenic micro-organisms in used newspaper poses a potential risk to human health. Older people, children, and people with compromised vital organs and immune systems are at a greater risk of acquiring cancer-related health complications if they are exposed to food packed in such material,” said FSSAI in a press statement.
The FSSAI has stated that there is an urgent need to discourage the use of newspapers as a food packaging material by creating awareness among businesses, especially unorganized food business operators, about the harmful effects. The regulator has instructed the commissioners of food safety across the country to initiate an awareness campaign to this effect.