"Some instances of sale of sub-standard food being delivered through online food delivery service platforms have come to notice of FSSAI," said Consumer Affairs MoS Danve Raosaheb Dadarao.
Even as online food ordering and delivery services sector in India, which has Zomato and Swiggy as the leading players, continues to grow on the back of growing customer base for online players and serving new markets, the customers’ grievances with respect to food hygiene and quality standards are also on the rise. According to the government data, such grievances in FY20 are heading towards a 100 per cent increase from FY19. The number of complaints filed with the National Consumer Helpline has increased from 1,053 in FY19 to 1,955 till January FY20, according to the data shared by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution MoS Danve Raosaheb Dadarao in Rajya Sabha earlier this month. That’s already an 85 per cent increase from FY19.
“Some instances of sale of sub-standard food being delivered through online food delivery service platforms have come to notice of FSSAI. Whenever any instance of sale and supply of substandard food items through such platforms is received, the same is taken up with the concerned Commissioner of Food Safety of States/UTs,” Dadarao said in a written reply.
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However, interestingly between April 2019 and September 2019, out of the top five companies against which 34,991 complaints were filed with the National Consumer Helpline, Flipkart Internet and Amazon Seller Services topped the list with 11,028 and 7,203 complaints respectively filed against them. The other three companies were Reliance Jio Infocomm, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone. Most of the complaints were resolved by these companies, data showed. The total number of complaints resolved stood at 34,342.
“Different Regulatory Bodies look into different products such as the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India is concerned with food products, the Central Drug Controller with medicines/cosmetics to check for counterfeit and sub-standard products in the market on regular basis and if any deficiency is found, manufacturers are penalised as per the provisions in the related Acts,” the minister said.