". Bakery Industry: FSSAI brings rules for licensing and adulteration under fssai act 2006

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FSSAI brings rules for licensing and adulteration under fssai act 2006

Just  a reminder  to all  Indian bakery manufacturer s that  the new act  of food safety and standards 2006   is effective  since  Jan2010 . Please  ensure your firm registration with authorities in proper category .

Around one lakh cases related to food adulteration are pending in courts. The conviction rate of these cases is only 1%, said PI Suvrathan, chairman, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India. The prime reason for the low conviction rate was faulty designing of the law under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, which was based on sample testing of the final product. If the sample was found adulterated by the food inspector, the food manufacturer was taken to the court. However, he would manage to go free if he proved that circumstances other than manufacturing were responsible for adulteration. For example, the way the product was transported or stored. This allowed him to evade from the 3-6 months jail term as prescribed under the PFA Act.

The laboratories that tested these samples too were not properly equipped. “Every country should have protocols which are uniformly applied to the entire laboratories, “said Suvrathan. The food manufacturer used the loophole in the law to pass on the blame to someone else. However, with the FSSAI coming up, the method of law implementation will change radically. The FSSAI will put the responsibility of food safety on the manufacturer and not the government or the law-enforcing agency. The prime responsibility would lie on the manufacturer and secondary responsibility on the food handler. In case an offence is committed, the manufacturer will be given an opportunity to rectify his product. If the act is repeated, then a warning or suspension may take place.

Said Suvrathan, “For the first time science-based protocols are being laid down. We are developing a simplified system of safety standards which will be a part of the licensing regulation. Around 5,000 food professionals will be accredited who can assist manufacturers in auditing, certifying food units and helping them understand safety laws. The role of the regulating agency will be not only to inspect but also to achieve food safety through interaction with school, colleges, panchayats, corporations and all the stake-holders.

With the FSS Act, the role of food inspector will be replaced by the food safety officer. Also, till now food manufacturers had to comply under various licences proposed under different Acts like the FPO, MPO, etc. Now, all licensing will be integrated in one licence known as the FSSA licence. FSSAI will be licensing all the larger units like milk companies producing above 50,000 litres a day, meat processing units etc. The rest of the units will be licensed by states, in turn by districts, municipal corporations, panchayats etc. Smaller units with monthly income up to one lakh rupees a year or limited quantity of production can simply go for registration and not licensing.

Also, for the first time the FSSAI has introduced the rule that if the regulating authority fails to respond within 60 days of application of licence/registration, then the food manufacturer can go ahead and start operations without approval/registration. Thus the responsibility has been shifted to the regulator, said Suvrathan.

Date  12.03.2010
Source: http://www.fnbnews.com/
Author :Irum Khan

link to fssai : http://www.fssai.gov.in/

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