FoodSafetyHelpline experts replied to the recent queries:
Q. I had heard that there are new regulations coming out in India regarding the labeling of food products, could anyone update me if this has happened yet or are they the same as on the FSSAI website at the moment.
A. The Food Safety & Standards (Packaging & Labeling) Regulations, 2011 with some amendments are due from some time. It was learnt earlier that the amended regulations could come out in August 2014. We believe that the authorities are working on the comprehensive view of the regulations so that the proposed labelling changes could be more consumer friendly.
Just like to share with you the latest from FSSAI:
i) FSSAI extends the date for declaring Trans Fat on the labels until December 31, 2015.
ii) FSSAI has also extended the date of compliance for mentioning of the FSSAI Logo & License No. and as per the latest notification FBOs have to mention FSSAI Logo & License No. on the labels from July 1, 2015.
Q. I want to ask you about the product approval process and how much time does the whole process take, I have talked to my FSSAI consultancies and the answer from most of them I get is that the process takes somewhere around a year, it isn’t fixed and the case doesn’t file due to the non-working of their website, so is that true? The product, which I want to get approved, is ‘processed meats”
A. We cannot comment as how long will it take to get a product approval as there are no timeline mentioned by FSSAI. What we can tell you that if your application is complete in every respect along with all the required documents plus if the ingredients are already approved and standardized under the FSS Act, 2006 then relatively it will take less time. In case of any deficiency in your application, the authority will attempt to reply back within 10 working days from the receipt of the application.
Q. How to get information about the status for product approval application pending since October 2012?
A. You could track your application by writing to FSSAI for the status with any acknowledgement number if you have been provided while submitting the application or else you can track you application with the Demand Draft Number. We are sure that your pending application could be tracked this way.
Q. Plan to start e-tailing sweetmeat/biscuits/namkeen thru our own web portal being developed for this purpose. I need to know what are the registrations/licences and other formalities required if
(A) goods being e-tailed belong to other retailers/distributors/manufacturers
(B) goods being e-tailed belong to other retailers/distributors/manufacturers but are re branded/re packed by us
(C) goods being e-tailed are manufactured by us.
I would also like to know if there is a single registration /licence which covers all the three above.
A. You cannot have a single license for all the discussed food business activities as separate criteria has been defined for different food businesses. Although for online sale you need to apply for the single license for one premise where you can add multiple activities like Manufacturing & Retailing, relabeling, distribution etc. as defined under the Food Safety & Standards Act but you may have to apply for the separate licenses for warehouse if it is separately located (in case you own it) where you will be storing the commodities plus the transport license in case if you are using own vehicles for transportation of the commodities. Separate licenses for separate business premises based on the annual turnover and a central license for the head office.