In a letter dated 21 July, 2016 the FSSAI has given directions to all Commissioners of Food Safety of all States and Union Territories regarding the grant of Licence/ Registration to Food Business Operators (FBOs) under the FSS Act, 2006.
The FSSAI has issued this direction as it has recently come to their notice that the Licensing Authority/ Registering Authority, that are responsible for issuing licenses/registrations to FBOs, are only issuing the same for a period of one to two years. They are not taking into consideration the number of years the FBOs have opted for in the application for the license/registration.
In the Food Safety Standards (Licensing and Registration of Food Business) Regulations 2011 it is stated that “a registration or license granted under the Regulations shall be valid and subsisting, unless otherwise specified, for a period of 1 to 5 years as chosen by the Food Business Operator, from the date of issue of registration or license subject to remittance of fee applicable for the period and in compliance with all conditions of license.”
The FSSAI has therefore directed all Commissioners of Food Safety to issue necessary directions to all the concerned officers to grant license/ registration for the period as chosen by the Food Business Operator, subject to the fact that they are also remitting fees as applicable according to the number of years that the license/ registration has been applied for.
All FBOs are already aware that under Section 31 of the Food Safety &Standards Act, 2006, no food business operator is permitted to carry out any activity related to food without a valid license or registration. This applies to all food businesses whether large or small, vendors, retailers or ay one doing any kind of food business in India.
The FSSAI is aware that the number of food business operators is very large and therefore it is for this reason that it has been extending the dates for converting pre-existing licences/ registrations granted under previous food acts and bringing them under the FSS Act 2006.
- The FSSAI announced sometime back that for converting licenses/ registrations under previous Acts to FSS Act 2006, they would no longer extend the dates beyond 4th August 2016
- However, those who wish to apply for new license/ registration for new food business can continue to do so even after the expiry of this date as that is an on-going process.
As an FBO if you have not converted your pre-existing license you still have time to apply for a license/ registration under FSS Act, 2006 and opt for a licence/ registration for 1 to 5 years and pay the fee accordingly. Likewise, new food business operators can also apply for license/ registration for any duration from 1 to 5 years for their new food business. The license/registration that is granted in all cases will be valid for the number of years you have applied for.