While some people might not look at food labels when purchasing food, a majority of people have started checking for information given on food labels. Whether it is regarding the nutritious information or ingredients that one needs to avoid, in this day food labels have become extremely important to many.
For those who rely on food labels for a number of reasons, it can get a bit tricky, especially in countries like the Maldives where a majority of the products are imported from different countries. And this is not due to the different languages of the labels, but it is due to the fact that some products are not labelled according to the product inside the container.
One might say it is a bit like the cookie container that we often find on our table, or the container of ice cream that you find in the freezer of your house– while the container label indicates a delicious sweet treat is inside, but often the container stores either sewing materials or raw tuna. Food labels have started having the same outcome as some of the containers for products are extremely different from what is inside the container.
Due to such issues, the Maldives Food and Drug Authority (MFDA) has announced that it will not allow the import of food items with additional labels from next month.
The MFDA stated that some food items are currently imported into Maldives in packages and containers used for other products, and when imported in this manner, another label is attached in addition to the original label. This makes it difficult to trace the product in case of confusion and problems and also violates food labelling standards.
As a result, food items imported in containers that are different from their original packaging or with an additional label will not be issued health clearance from 15 February 2023.
This problem has come up before, and measures have been taken to address it. But it seems like the issue has never been fully resolved. Many people don't think twice about getting their food in different containers, but for others, the ingredients and nutritional information are extremely important.