India Maggi ban 'legally untenable' | The Daily Star
02:41 PM, August 13, 2015 / LAST MODIFIED: 03:03 PM, August 13, 2015

India Maggi ban 'legally untenable'

A court in India has lifted a government ban on Nestle's popular Maggi noodles, but ordered fresh tests before the product can go back on sale.

Nestle had challenged the ban ordered by the country's food safety regulator in June after some tests found lead levels beyond statutory limits.

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The Swiss food multinational has always said its products are safe.

Thursday's ruling came a day after India separately sued Nestle for $100m (£64m) over "unfair trade practices".

The complaint against Nestle is that it caused damage to consumers through misleading advertisements related to its Maggi noodles product.

On Thursday, the Bombay High Court called June's ban on the popular noodles "arbitrary" and said it violated the "principles of natural justice".

"We have examined the evidence in great detail. Since the petitioner Nestle has already agreed not to make and sell Maggi until the food authorities are satisfied, we see no reason to allow any relief to food authorities," Justice Vidyasagar Kanade was quoted as saying by the AFP news agency.

The court directed Nestle to "send five samples from each batch of Maggi [noodles] for testing to three labs and only if the lead is found to be lower than permitted will they start manufacturing and sale again".

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) had earlier said that tests deemed the instant noodles to contain "unsafe and hazardous" amounts of lead.

Nestle says its noodles are safe as seen in the results of tests conducted in other countries, including the US, Britain and Singapore.

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