Apex standard setting and monitoring body Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has often been criticised for partnering with private organisations and companies with apparent conflict of interests for various awareness campaigns related to health and food habits. While there may or may not be merit in such allegations, it is safer to be transparent and accountable. And that is what FSSAI seems to have decided as it has come out with draft guidelines that chart out the dos and don'ts for such collaborations.
Such a guideline is important because there are several areas where regulators collaborate with the private sector. One of these is to upgrade the quality of testing and standards of the regulator in a world of fast changing technology. The other is to get external experts to be part of scientific panels and advisory bodies to take prudent decisions. To draw a distinct line between private interests and public duty is a timely measure.