Recently, a video circulating on social media claimed that the ‘Aashirvaad’ brand of wheat flour contains plastic, prompting an investigation due to the popularity of atta-based food products. Upon closer examination of the video’s claims, it was revealed that ITC Private Limited, the owner of the Aashirvaad brand, had provided a detailed response in which they stated that the allegations of rubber or plastic in their atta were unfounded.
According to ITC, the substance in question, often mistaken for plastic or rubber, is actually wheat protein, commonly known as gluten. Gluten is essential as it binds the atta together and imparts elasticity to it. Under the Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006, atta should contain a minimum of 6% gluten content on a dry mass basis, a requirement that ITC assures it meets.
ITC reaffirmed the safety of its atta, emphasizing that it adheres to all legal guidelines and is prepared through a secure process. The company also warned of potential legal action against individuals spreading false information or videos about their atta.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) also weighed in, confirming that atta is free of plastic and is safe for consumption. Additionally, an executive director of the Protein Foods and Nutrition Development Association of India debunked the allegations against atta in a video. Gluten, a natural protein present in cereals like wheat, is what provides elasticity to food items, not plastic.
Health experts and officials from the Food Safety Authority further clarified that gluten is a seed storage protein found in cereals such as wheat and barley. While it is crucial for making bakery items like bread, biscuits, and chapatis, it poses no health risks for most individuals, except those with gluten allergies.
In conclusion, the videos claiming that atta contains plastic are entirely false. The substance in question is gluten, a natural protein found in cereals, which provides elasticity to food items like atta-based products.