FSA News item, 31 October 2005
A UK code of practice for basmati rice has been developed. This is a result of work by the UK rice industry, British Retail Consortium (BRC), Local Authorities Coordinators of Regulatory Services (LACORS), and the Association of Public Analysts (APA).
The new code applies to prepacked as well as non-prepacked rice, and where rice is used as an ingredient in other foods.
It lists the varieties that are currently approved by the Indian and Pakistani authorities that can use the description ‘basmati’, and lays down the minimum specifications and labelling requirements for basmati rice sold in the UK. The maximum limit for non-basmati rice is 7%.
Basmati rice is recognised for its unique cooking properties and distinctive aroma, and sells for two to three times the price of other long grain rice.
The code will provide improved protection for people who eat basmati rice and will assist local authorities in their enforcement work.
As a result the Agency has removed its previous guidance on the use of the term basmati.
You can access the new code of practice from the Rice Association website at: http://www.riceassociation.org.uk/PDF%27s/65.F.014%20Basmati%20COP%20-%20final%20-%20colour%20version.pdf