Leisure, Lifestyle & Wellness
Watch out for those bright colours in your food; they are banned

Indian sweet makers go overboard with artificial colouring. Rhodamine B, followed by Orange II and Metanil Yellow, were the two most common non-permitted or banned colours that were used, according to a study by Sumita Dixit

A study, conducted on milk-based sweets consumed in India showed that nearly 60% of food colours used in Indian sweets are well above legal limits and as much as 16.4% are non-permitted colours.
A study by Sumita Dixit—a researcher at the Indian Institute of Toxicology Research, Food, Drug and Chemical Toxicology Research Area (IITR)—published by the Journal of Food Science has come to the startling conclusion that Indian sweet makers go overboard with artificial colouring. While this is evident in the pink and green sweets, yellow and orange jelebis that we consumer with relish, there is not a scientific study that establishes the danger. Ms Dixit's study analyzed 2,409 samples of milk-based sweets, cereal-based sweets and savoury products. Of this sample, 83.6% contained permitted colours, but 58% of these were over the maximum allowable concentration limit of 100 mg/kg and the remaining 16.4% contained dangerous non-permitted colours. This has bought the total number of adulterated products in India to 64.8%.
The study showed that Rhodamine B, followed by Orange II and Metanil Yellow, were the two most common non-permitted or banned colours that were used. It is important to note that Rhodamine B is a cancer causing colouring agent that gives a pink colour but is actually meant for use in the plastics and textile industry. It gives a pink colour to sweets and is also used by shrimp paste makers to give it a fresh it a reddish brown hue. In many countries the use of Rhodamine B has been banned for 50 years and attracts a jail term, if used. Metanil yellow, which is widely used, is also banned and a study on rats showed that it affects the brain. 
Another research was conducted to assess how often Indian consumers ate colour-containing products at a national level. The study found that children and adolescents had higher average daily consumption of such foods than adults, potentially posing a health risk. The researchers said, “On the basis of average consumption of food commodities and average levels of detected colours, the intake of Sunset Yellow FCF saturates the acceptable daily intake limit to a maximum of 47.8% in children, which is a cause of concern”. Sunset Yellow has previously been linked to hyperactivity in children and Tartrazine, a lemon yellow colour, was the most common permitted colour. An earlier study found ADI limits were exceeded in 36% of food use in India.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India permits eight synthetic colours in specified foods at a uniform level of 100 mg/kg, while the acceptable daily intake ADI for food colours varies from 0.1 to 25 mg/kg body weight per day. The researchers said that these rules needed to be reviewed. The rule relating to the uniform maximum permissible limit of synthetic colours should be governed by technological necessity and the consumption profiles of the food commodities, in order to prevent people from unnecessarily getting exposed to excessive amounts of synthetic colours which can risk their health. Also the saturation of ADI limits in the commodities which is up to 48% is a cause of concern.


Lupin Q4 net profit jumps 162% on robust sales in India, US

Nomura has reiterated a buy on the pharmaceutical company due to increased sales from India and US, as well as robust pipeline of ANDA pipeline that could boost Lupin’s future prospects

Lupin has reported exemplary quarterly results, with 34.7% increase in consolidated net sales for the quarter ended March 2013 at Rs253.74 crore compared to the Rs188.32 crore for the corresponding quarter last year. The pharmaceutical company’s net profits profit grew by 162.2% year-on-year (y-o-y) to Rs40.81 crore during Q4 FY 2012‐13 up from Rs15.56 crore for the same period last year.

According to Nomura, the good results were driven positive showing from the United States. The strong showing in India surprised too. “The growth in India at 43% y-o-y surprised us positively and strong performance in the US was in line with our expectations. We remain positive given potential of earnings upgrades driven largely by the US opportunities,” said Nomura in their quick note. Nomura, in their quick note to clients, has pegged the stock as a ‘buy’ and fixed a target price of Rs790.

Earlier, Moneylife had recommended Lupin as part of its ‘Long-Term’ portfolio at Rs629. Currently, the stock is quoting at Rs725.45 on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).

According to Moneylife database, its return on networth and return on capital employed stood at 34% and 28% respectively. Its strong focus on research and development and a strong ANDA pipeline means investors are expecting premium vis-à-vis potential future returns. The market capitalisation is quoting at 27.88 times operating profit.

On a consolidated basis, US and Europe formulation sales (including IP) grew by 49% to Rs12,12.3 crore during Q4 FY 2012‐13, as against Rs8,15.3 crore during Q4 FY 2011‐12, contributing 48% to overall sales. US revenues increased by 33% to$205 million during Q4 FY 2012‐13. Four products were launched in the US market during the quarter taking it to a total of 10 products during FY 2012‐13.

The strength in the US was driven by strong pick up in Suprax, Tricor and higher Cefdinir revenues. The company expects to launch 15–20 products in the US, according to Nomura.

On the other hand, the India formulations business contributed 22% of the company’s overall revenues for the quarter. The segment grew by 43% recording net revenues of Rs5,65.9 crore during Q4 FY 2012‐13, as compared to Rs3,96.6 crore in Q4 FY 2011‐12.

Furthermore, the Nomura’s note states: “As per management, low base of the last year (on supply constraints) and improving sales force productivity is driving the growth. The company estimates the impact of the new pricing policy could range between 3–3.5% of the domestic sales.”

Lupin has filed 8 ANDAs and received 10 approvals from the US FDA during the quarter. During the year, the company filed 21 ANDAs and received 14 approvals. Cumulative ANDA filings with the US FDA as of 31 March 2013 stood at 176 with the company having received 78 approvals to date.

Debt Equity Ratio as on 31st March, 2013 was 0.14.


Sensex, Nifty hovering in overbought zone : Thursday closing report

A close below any previous day’s low on the Nifty will signal a reversal of the current upmove

The Asian indices had a mixed opening while the benchmark back home opened marginally higher. Sensex opened at 20,016 while the Nifty opened at 6,078. It was only at the start of the trading session that the Sensex hit its intra day high at 20,058 while the Nifty hit its high in the afternoon session at 6,085. NSE saw a volume of 55.62 crore shares, lower than yesterday.

The key benchmark moved in a narrow range and at the close of the session they hit a higher low. Sensex hit a low of 19,904 while the Nifty hit a low of 6,040. The indices made a marginal recovery from the day’s low but closed in the negative breaking the three consecutive day of positive trading. The Sensex closed 51 points down at 19,939 (fell 0.26%) while Nifty closed 19 points down at 6,050 (fell 0.32%).
The broader indices closed in the negative. The BSE Mid-cap index fell 0.44% and the BSE Small-cap index fell 0.04%.
Only 6 of the sectoral indices closed in the positive. The top sectoral indices were BSE IT (up 0.87%); BSE Teck (up 0.50%); BSE PSU (up 0.20%); BSE FMCG (up 0.10%) and BSE Power (up 0.07%). Among the losers were BSE Healthcare (down 1.62%); BSE Metal (down 1.46%); BSE Realty (down 1.10%); BSE Consumer Durables (down 0.88%) and BSE Oil & Gas  (down 0.62%). 
Twelve of the 30 stocks on the Sensex closed in the positive. The chief gainers were SBI (up 1.81%); TCS (up 1.52%); Wipro (up 0.80%); Hindalco Inds (up 0.54%) and ITC (up 0.48%). The key losers were Sun Pharma (down 3.73%); Jindal Steel (down 3.42%); Sterlite Inds (down 2.28%); Cipla (down 1.47%) and Reliance Industries (down 1.33%).
The top two A Group gainers on the BSE were— National Aluminium (up 5.75%) and Punjab National Bank (up 4.57%).
The top two A Group losers on the BSE were— Jubilant FoodWorks (down 7.40%) and Sun TV Network (down 3.89%).
The top two B Group gainers on the BSE were— Viceroy Hotels (up 20%) and Goldstone Infratech (up 20%).
The top two B Group losers on the BSE were— Satra Properties (down 19.30%) and Bhandari Hosiery Exports (down 17.87%).
Most of the Asian indices ended in the red with the Nikkei 225 losing 0.66% while the maximum gain was seen in Seoul Composite which rose 1.18%. The Bank of Korea on Thursday cut its key interest rate by a quarter-point to 2.5%.
Among important news, Chinese data showed consumer price inflation rose more than expected in April. China's consumer price index rose more than expected in April, while wholesale prices suffered a steeper fall. The April CPI showed a gain of 2.4% from a year earlier, led by a 4% rise in food prices, the National Bureau of Statistics said Thursday. The rise was more than March's 2.1% increase, though below February's spike of 3.2%. The producer price index, meanwhile, fell by the most since October, dropping 2.6% against a decline of 1.9% in March. Major European indices FTSE 100, DAX, CAC40 were trading flat and the US Futures was also trading in the negative.
The meeting of board of directors of HT Media will be held on May 14, 2013, inter alia, to consider, the audited financial results for the year ended on March 31, 2013 & recommendation of dividend, if any, for the financial year 2012-13, The board of directors of the company will also consider a proposal for buy-back of equity shares of the company. The stock fell 0.88% to close at Rs101.90 on the NSE.
Investment & Precision Castings has informed BSE that the board of directors of the company at its meeting held on May 09, 2013, inter alia, have recommended payment of Dividend @ Re. 0.50 per equity share (5%) for the Financial Year 2012-2013. The stock rose 11.11% to close at Rs35 on the BSE.


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