Mains Paper 2: Governance | Issues relating to development & management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources
From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:
Prelims level: Eat Right Movement, Swastha Bharat Yatra, Heart Attack Rewind
Mains level: Read the attached story.
- The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has launched a new mass media campaign in order to create awareness about trans fats and eliminate them in India by 2022.
Heart Attack Rewind
- It is a 30-second public service announcement to be broadcast in 17 languages for a period of four weeks on YouTube, Facebook, Hotstar, and Voot.
- It will also be placed on outdoor hoardings and run on radio stations in Delhi and the National Capital Region.
- The campaign will warn citizens about the health hazards of consuming trans fats and offer strategies to avoid them through healthier alternatives.
- This campaign will concentrate on the demand side (consumers), who in turn, will push the supply side (food manufacturers) to come up with various strategies in order to reduce and later replace trans fats.
What are Trans Fats?
- Artificial Trans fats are created in an industrial process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid.
- Since they are easy to use, inexpensive to produce and last a long time, and give foods a desirable taste and texture, they are still widely used despite their harmful effects being well-known.
Why this move?
- Studies have recently shown that 60,000 deaths occur every year due to cardiovascular diseases, which in turn are caused due to high consumption of trans fats.
- Since the impact of trans fats on human health is increasing exponentially, it is very important to create awareness about them.
Other FSSAI Initiatives
- Heart Attack Rewind is a follow-up to an earlier campaign called “Eat Right”, which was launched on July 11, 2018.
- As part of the campaign, edible oil industries took a pledge to reduce trans fat content by 2 per cent by 2022.
- Later, food companies also took a pledge to reformulate packaged foods with reduced levels of salt, sugar and saturated fat.
- Swasth Bharat Yatra, an initiative started under the “Eat Right” campaign which started on October 16 and will end on January 27, 2019, will also seek to create awareness among citizens about trans fats.
A Move to adopt WHO guidelines
- In May this year, the WHO released a step-by-step guide for the elimination of industrially-produced trans-fatty acids from the global food supply.
- Since then, a lot of countries have made efforts to reduce the levels of trans fats and in some cases, have completely banned them.
- India is also moving towards same by first reducing the levels from 5 per cent to 2 per cent and then altogether by 2022.