FSSAI (i.e. Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) is an institution that oversees and controls the food trade in our country. It makes sure that the food products are subjected to multiple quality inspections thereby diminishing the food deterioration as well as the sale of inferior merchandise. It is accountable for the recording as well as licensing of the FBO (Food Business Operators) in India and it advances the standards and principles for operating the food business in India.
The certification plus permission for food business in our country is administered by the Food Safety and Standards (Licensing and Registration of Food businesses) Regulation, 2011. According to this regulation, each food business administrator in India is needed to have an FSSAI registration or license in case they are occupied in the production, depository, conveyance or circulation, and dispersion of food products. As per the intensity as well as the type of business, FSSAI registration or FSSAI license might be needed.
Every food business administrator concerned with the production, preparation, storehouse, circulation & sale of food products should mandatorily acquire the FSSAI Registration or License. FSSAI Registration is distinct from FSSAI License i.e. it is dependent on the size as well as the type of the business, FBO should acquire the required registration or license.
It is a 14-digit registration or a license number that is engraved on all the food containers. This enrollment process aims to build more responsibility on the FBO to manage the excellence of the food products. FSSAI enrollment is needed for every petty food business operator. A trivial food business operator is any person or entity who:
● Produces or sells any item of food himself or a petty hawker, itinerant vendor or temporary stall holder, retailer; or
● Give away food items inclusive of any religious or social get together except for a caterer; or
● Events correlating with food like that of small scale or cottage or such other businesses pertaining to food or tiny businesses with an annual turnover not exceeding Rs 12 lakhs and also those whose:
– The volume with which food items are produced (other than milk and milk products and meat and meat products) does not exceed 100 kg/ltr per day or
– Obtainment or management, as well as accumulation of milk, is up to 500 liters of milk per day or
– Butchering competency is 2 large animals or 10 small animals or 50 poultry birds per day or less.
Frivolous food trade operators are needed to acquire an FSSAI registration through submitting an application for registration in Form A. On submission of an FSSAI registration form, the registration shall be given or the application rebuffed in writing within 7 days of receipt of an application by the authority.
FSSAI enrollment certificate includes the details of registration as well as a picture of the candidate. The certificate must be noticeably displayed at the place of food business, at all times while carrying on with the food business.
Any person or entity that cannot be classified as a minor food business operator is mandatorily required to obtain an FSSAI license in order to operate a food business in our country. FSSAI license is of two types:
These are distinguished on the basis of the size and nature of the business. Depending on these two factors, the licensing authority also changes. Large food manufacturers/processors/transporters and importers of food products need the central FSSAI license; on the other hand, a state FSSAI license is needed for medium-sized food manufacturers, processors, and transporters.
The fee, as well as method for acquiring an FSSAI license, is more extensive in comparison to the process of FSSAI registration. FSSAI license application is prescribed as well as recommended to be made in Form B to the appropriate Licensing Authority in addition to the necessary self-attested declaration, affidavit, and annexures, as applicable.
FSSAI license is granted for a time span of 1 to 5 years as requested by the food business operator. The higher fee shall be applicable for obtaining an FSSAI license for furthermore years. If in case, registration is acquired for one or two years, then the license can be renewed by making an application, no later than 30 days prior to the expiry date of the FSSAI license.
There are different forms and documents which are required to be submitted for the process of conversion, renewal, and modification of the license.
All registered or licensed persons under the FSSAI have to abide by the rules and regulations under the FSS Act, 2006. A food safety official normally conducts an investigation of the food business operator’s facility in order to identify the level of compliance with the regulations through the use of a checklist. Based on the compliance level, the food safety officer marks it as:
After the above check, the food safety officer might issue an improvement notice where ever required per Sec 32 of the FSS Act, 2006. Any food business operator grieving by an improvement notice can appeal to the State Commissioner of Food Safety. The decision thereon can be challenged through appealing to Food safety appellate tribunal/high court.
Listed is the penalty for various type of non-compliance:
|Food quality not in compliance with the act||2 Lakh Petty manufacturer –25,000/-|
|Sub-standard food||5 Lakh|
|Misbranded Food||3 Lakh|
|Misleading advertisement or false description||10 Lakh|
|Extraneous matter in food||1 Lakh|
|Failure to comply with Food safety officer direction||2 Lakh|
|Unhygienic processing or manufacture||1 Lakh|
Yes. Under section 31(2), Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 these entities are exempted:
There are harsh consequences of not obtaining the license:
The food safety license has a validity of 5 years. An entity needs to apply just before 30 days of expiry by making an application for renewal. The applicant will have to fill the respective forms and submit them with documents to the authority.
Yes, the food could be recalled if it doesn’t meet the quality standards of the authority. They will ban the food from sale in the market till it is cleared by the authority. This is done under section 28 of the Food Safety Act.
No, there is no requirement for separate licenses for different branches. An entity can make a single application for a central license which will be applicable for all its branches.
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