The Times, Food & Drink
Jeremy Page in Delhi
For lovers of Indian food, variety and spice are essential components of a perfect meal. But it appears that the poppadum, a staple accompaniment, can be subject to too much variety — in shape, size, flavour and consistency. It may be crispy, circular and spicy or chewy, plain and square.
So now the United Nations food and health agencies are to lay down international standards for how the poppadum can be manufactured.
It will join Cheddar cheese and dried shark’s fin on a list of internationally traded food products drawn up by the Codex Committee on Food Additives and Contaminants. Such a listing would give an importer or an individual consumer a basis for legal action if the poppadum in question fell short of Codex standards.
The list — also known as the Codex Alimentarius — will specify that poppadums, or papads, should be “thin circular discs” from 5cm (2in) to 25cm in diameter, and between 0.3mm and 1.2mm thick.