Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), in its efforts to streamline the enforcement with use of technology, has decided to ask FBOs to put ‘display boards’ in their premises which will tell customers what these FBOs do when it comes to food safety.
FSSAI has made a ‘ to-do’ list for various kinds of FBOs that include dairy, meat, small restaurant, big restaurant and retail outlets. This list will have info from simpler topics like handwash to little complex subjects dealing with GMP, GHP, HACCP and so on. The whole exercise will be linked with the licences and registration project thereby ensuring that the requisites of licences and registration are met on ground.
Soon a pilot project will be launched with FBOs like Mother Dairy, Haldiram’s, Tata Starbucks and Travel Management Services wherein there will be a display board having a to-do list, FSSAI’s WhatsApp number, and a toll-free number where the customers can send their feedback. These feedback patterns will be shared amongst the food safety officials for analysis and further enforcement action. Further, this will also help the authority to understand through responses from public, as to how the enforcement machinery is reacting to that concern.
Pawan Agarwal, CEO, FSSAI, told FnB News that by such a means there would be better utilisation of the resources food safety departments have in states.
“We’re telling them that as food safety commissioner they can be more efficient in reacting to a concern which is real and we can utilise our infrastructure in a better manner,” he said.
The issue came up at the recently-held CAC (Central Advisory Committee) meeting.
Agarwal elaborated, “In our authority meeting we discussed issues connected to the states. Concern management was one point. The overall ambition was that all FBOs should display food safety display board in which there will be a list of 10-12 things to do by them ranging from the simplistic handwash to a little more complex subject (according to the work nature of the FBO). The foodhandler must know these to-do things. And the visitors and consumers also notice and thereby can give a feedback on those points about their experience by means of the already launched FSSAI mobile app.”
He added, “This will go to our backend system and it will be linked with the licensing requisites. So enforcement agency will go to that particular point where action is needed.”
Agarwal stated, “This was part of food safety management system and its components like GMP, GHP or HACCP and how industry can help us. The task is huge and with such a lean infrastructure, it’s difficult (to achieve the goals of food safety). It requires close cooperation with all the stakeholders. We can always take inputs from stakeholders including consumers, consumer organisation and industry.”