Labeling of cosmetics as vegetarian, non-vegetarian cannot be mandatory: CDSCO tells Delhi HC


The Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) told the Delhi High Court that labeling of cosmetics as vegetarian and non-vegetarian cannot be made compulsory for manufacturers and manufacturers can do so voluntarily, reported Hindustan time.

In an affidavit filed before a bench of Judges Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh, the CDSCO said the Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB) did not “agree to impose a green (for vegetarians) or red (for non-vegetarians) on every package of cosmetics as it can complicate regulation and increase the regulatory burden on stakeholders.”

However, the council said the labeling of items such as soaps, shampoos, toothpaste and other cosmetics and toiletries can be made voluntary and left to the manufacturer to decide, the medicines regulator said. . Subsequently, a notice stating that “cosmetic manufacturers may indicate a red/brown or green dot on the packaging of soaps, shampoos, toothpastes and other cosmetics and toiletries on a voluntary basis for their vegetarian or non-vegetarian origin respectively was issued on September 10 last year, he added.

The CDSCO affidavit followed a request from Ram Gau Raksha Dal, a non-governmental trust, to label products, including food products and cosmetics, as vegetarian or non-vegetarian, not only on the basis of their ingredients but also on the substance used in the manufacturing process. The petition, filed through lawyer Rajat Aneja, said it is the fundamental right of every citizen to know whether the food they eat, the cosmetics and perfumes they use, the clothes/ clothing that he wears, contains or is made using components. or parts derived from the body of an animal.

Taking note of the plea, the High Court on December 9 had made it mandatory for all food business operators to make “full and complete disclosure” of all ingredients used in the manufacture of any food product. The court ruled that “every person has the right to know what they are consuming and nothing can be offered to them on a platter by resorting to deception or camouflage.”

The court also said that the ingredients used in the manufacturing process must not only be written in code, but also by source of origin – plant or animal, naturally produced or laboratory-made. He also threatened to take action against food operators who fail to comply with the order.

The court, however, did not mention anything about cosmetics. In its affidavit, the CDSCO said that at a DTAB meeting on April 13 last year, the board pointed out that there was no clarity or system for certifying vegetarian and non-vegetarian cosmetic products. vegetarians across the country. The case is due to be heard on January 31.

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