RS raises issue of food safety delivered by e-commerce

Issue of food safety delivered by e-commerce platforms raised in Rajya Sabha

The issue of quality, safety and hygiene of food delivered via ecommerce platforms was raised in Rajya Sabha on Thursday, with Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan saying his ministry will look into the matter. During Zero Hour, CPI-M leader K Somaprasad said, "There is every chance of adulteration and that badly affects the interest of customers. Sir, urgent interference of the government is inevitable."

Online food supply should be regulated and should be brought under the food safety regulator FSSAI, he said and again urged the government to take "adequate measures to ensure fair price, quality and food safety on all online food delivery service platforms." Stating that the issue concerns the general public, Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu asked the Consumer Affairs Minister to take note of the matter.

"It is not related to one state but the entire country. On one side, you cannot stop it as this is a facility for people, on the other side, some regulation has to be there," Naidu said. To which, Paswan said he will call a meeting on Friday and discuss the matter with the CPI-M leader as well as with officials. Earlier the CPI-M member said eCommerce business in India was growing at a fast rate. Online food ordering and delivery services have witnessed spurt and this business is expected to reach USD 2.7 billion this year. "The changing lifestyle, increasing affinity of families to dine out and quick house deliver model has accelerated the online food delivery. But this sector is facing several issues," he said. Neither online food delivery service companies nor restaurants are ready to assume the responsibility related to quality, safety or hygiene standards of food, he said, adding this is a very serious issue. 

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