Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Road Transport & Highways, Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises, Government of India, has informed the Prime Minister's office to take immediate steps to control the sale of margarine. This came about after the minister was apprised of the increasing use of margarine in hotels and restaurants as margarine is a cheaper substitute to butter. It has adverse effects on people's health and is also detrimental to dairy farmers.
The PMO in turn informed the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) which has immediately issued clarification, directives and future course of action to control the use of the margarine in edible items.
Margarine contains copious amounts of trans fat which poses health risk to humans and also affects sale of butter made from cow milk causing financial losses to farmers.
FSSAI has clarified that the limit of trans fats is fixed at not more than 5 per cent in bakery and industrial margarine. The process is on for reducing the limit of trans fats in edible oils and fats to not more than 3 per cent by 2021 and not more than 2 per cent by 2022. Moreover, it has been made mandatory to declare the quantity of trans fats and saturated fats on the labels of products in which margarine is used.