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The Sanitary and Phytosanitary measures Agreement (“SPS Agreement”) formally came into existence in 1995. It deals with the application of animal and plant health procedures and food safety standards. The agreement allows the nations to set their own set of rules. Yet, it furthermore says guidelines should be instituted on science. They must be applied uniquely to the degree imperative to safeguard well-being, fauna or vegetation life or human. Moreover, they ought to not discretionarily or ridiculously segregate among nations where indistinguishable or comparable situations win. Part nations are advised to make use of global norms, rules, and suggestions where they exist.

Sanitary and Phytosanitary methods derived from SPS Agreement have gained more and more importance in recent times in relation to International Trade. The increase in food trade and the need for safe and healthy food has led to tight regulations for SPS methods and this has been causing some hindrances in the trade areas.

Sanitary and phytosanitary measures (SPS measures), by their actual nature, may bring about limitations on exchange. All administrations acknowledge the way that some exchange limitations might be important to guarantee food handling and creature and plant wellbeing assurance. Notwithstanding, governments are now and then forced to go past what is required for wellbeing assurance and to utilize clean and phytosanitary limitations to protect home-grown makers from financial rivalry. A clean or phytosanitary limitation that is not really needed for wellbeing reasons can be an extremely powerful protectionist gadget, and due to its specialized intricacy, an especially misleading and troublesome obstruction to challenge. The SPS Understanding urges governments to set up public SPS measures reliable with worldwide principles, rules, and suggestions.

SPS policies have the potential to stifle trade from developed nations. The WTO Simultaneousness on "Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (SPS Arrangement)" has aided non-mechanical trade by improving clarity, promoting harmonization, and preventing the implementation of SPS gauges that cannot be supported experimentally. It is extremely important for rural countries, like India. After the SPS Agreement came into effect, there have been a few models where Indian flavors, as well as marine products, have been limited, outlawed, and surprisingly obliterated on the grounds that these imports pose a danger to human, animal, and plant wellbeing in the acquiring.[2]

The costs of completing necessities and following responsibilities under the SPS Understanding are incredibly high for each farming country including India in light of inflexible new development spending plans. Also, there is no system and instrument in India to assess whether food things got from biotechnology are legitimate for utilization. It is in this way essential to take apart and evaluate the authentic construction of clean and phytosanitary framework in India and its commonality while applying the courses of action of the SPS Understanding.[3]

Indian Situation of SPS Measures

India has figured out how to make a specialty for itself in the worldwide food industry and is at present among the biggest makers for a few of the food items in the realm. These incorporate creation of foodgrains like dairy and wheat, paddy, foods grown from the ground, marine items, and so forth the breadth of the Indian food market is well above Indian rupees 250 billion and it trades merchandise worth Indian rupees 1450 million, contributing around 10% of the nations all out trades.

A huge home-grown demand guaranteed that there was a prepared market and along these lines a motivation for the makers to utilize proficient methods for creation bringing about a bigger amount and better nature of yield. Accordingly, the handling business has a development pace of around 15 percent per annum. Horticultural development however has been substantially less. However, there stays an enormous undiscovered capability of development which whenever misused can assist us with arising the biggest maker of significant food things.

Despite the fact that the food creating and handling area has presented some development during the previous few years, there exists a plenty of issues that should be tended to before it sets out on a high development way. On the domestic side, better innovation in all circles of creation and preparation can bring about more prominent productivity. Better transportation and storage spaces are likewise needed to alleviate the misfortunes emerging from waste and wastage of food. A few assessments recommend that at present around 20% of all food sources delivered in India are squandered. Additionally, simple credit accessibility is important, shortfall of which makes a deadlock intending to different issues.[4]

On the worldwide scene, emphasis has moved to two subjects. First and foremost, the nation would be good on the off chance that it trades handled food things, rather than essential yield. India is the second-biggest maker of products of the soil on the planet, yet just around 2% of it is prepared. Also, despite the fact that we are the biggest maker of milk, just around 15% of it is handled by the coordinated area.[5]

Besides, there is a need to forestall the import of unsatisfactory items from different nations. There have been occurrences in the past when created nations traded inferior quality food items to India, which were considered ill-suited in any event, for their home-grown market. Presently with a more prominent mindfulness and improved dealing power, India can want to forestall its native business sectors being utilized as unloading grounds by the created nations.[6]

In the new past mindfulness with respect to the significance of wellbeing measures and dread of wellbeing, danger has shown a clear upward pattern even in not-so-created nations like India. Accordingly, an intricate arrangement of examination and certificate has developed throughout the long term. This situation turns out to be more thorough if the merchandise being referred to will be to be shipped off unfamiliar markets. However, the inconvenience of more severe SPS guidelines by the created world would certainly have a few backlashes on the exchange of agricultural nations, including India. Some encouraging fare wares for India like spices, pulses, coffee, etc., and so forth may need to agree with certain firmer standards and guidelines.[7]

The SPS system in India comprises clean and phytosanitary guidelines dependent on logical and actually enhanced testing and accreditation methodology upheld by the structure including services and branches of the government.[8] In expansion to this there are explicit associations and offices to oversee the powerful execution of these guidelines.

Some of the legal framework organizations for the safety and health standards are:

Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), Food and Agriculture Department (FAD), Ministry of Food Processing Industry (MFP), and Export Inspection Council (EIC). The various laws and agencies in force for the SPS measures in India; Ministry of Agriculture, Milk and Milk Product Control, Insecticide Act, Meat Food Product Order 1973, Agriculture Produce (Grading and Marking Act) Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Prevention of Food Adulteration Act 1954 Ministry of Food Processing Industries, Fruit and Vegetables Product (Control) Order – FPO 1955 Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Rural Development: Directorate of Marketing and Inspection (DMI), Standards of Weights and Measures Act, Export (Quality Control and Inspection) Act 1963, etc.

Despite the fact that manufacturing export establishes the large quantity of the product exports from India, rural agricultural and other items, especially food things, keep on assuming a significant part in India's worldwide export. As per the Government of India, the rising rate of non-tariff obstructions, as SPS (and TBT) measures has arisen as a significant exchange concern for the country. A few product-related challenges faced by India are in the products of meat and meat products, marine foods, Indian rice, tea, chili powder etc.[9]


Support of safe and hygienic everyday environments is one of the fundamental privileges of the human race. Joining of the various sections of the globe to detail this arrangement is itself an acknowledgment of this right. However this truly milestone development, from the hour of its beginning, has become a reason for the struggle between the various groups. The struggles emerge because of the weaknesses present in the execution cycle. The initial phase toward this path would be the plan of International principles that depend on science and experimental proof and are satisfactory to a large share of the individuals. While defining the principles care ought to be taken to guarantee that the circumstances predominant in both developing also the developed nations are given their due significance.

From the point of view of the developed nations, they may need to embrace a more thoughtful way to deal with the entire issue. Essentially forcing less severe norms would not be adequate. It is correspondingly crucial for giving importance to the concerns being brought out from the developing nations. One more concern to be tended to by the "developed" countries is regarding the openness of ideal and ample statistics. This would unmistakably diminish some pointless issues for the shipping countries. While the emerging nations, in the event that they need to thrive in the profoundly competitive universe of international food trade then need to upgrade themselves. It is also similarly essential to give equivalent importance to the concerns being brought out from the developing nations.

After the SPS Arrangement came into being, India has made an honest effort to repair the institutional holes in the clean and phytosanitary assurance system by ordering new acts for the insurance of human, creature, and plant wellbeing. It has additionally settled different associations and organizations at a public level for managing SPS measures and for achieving progressed logical science data on sanitary and phytosanitary issues. Concerning in foundation, it has improved consistent appraisal, testing techniques, additional rooms, and accreditation measures at the nearby stage for making its industry genuine at the overall level. Clean and phytosanitary measures are active in nature. With new levels of progress in headway and care, individuals will without a doubt get cognizant of SPS issues and this is set to raise the degree of sterile and phytosanitary rules. Consequently, in such a situation India should join an extensive methodology to adapt successfully to such challenges at both home-grown and global levels.

[2]R. Kaul, WTO Agreement on The Application Of Sanitary And Phytosanitary Measures And The Indian Experience, ILI Law Review, 2016.

[3] Id.

[4] K. Bakshi, SPS Agreement under the WTO: The Indian Experience, Ministry of Food Processing Industry.

[5] Id.

[6] Ibid. 3

[7] N. N. Varshney, “Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures”, WTO and New International Trade Regime Implications for Indian Agriculture 228 (Agricultural Economics Research Association, New Delhi, 2003)

[8] K. S. Money, “The Challenges and Opportunities of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Standards Cost and Benefits of Strategies of Compliance” Country Paper- India Presented at Specialist Meeting for Asia at Beijing, 2014

[9]Rita Ghial, Case study on SPS measures and TBT measures in India: An analysis, International Journal of Academic Research and Development, Volume 3; Issue 1; January 2018.

Navin Kumar Jaggi

Heta Thakar


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