Ever seen this “FSSAI” logo on your food items and wondered what it actually is? Many people don’t even know that the full form of FSSAI is Food Safety and Standards and Authority of India. Well, in this blog, we will try to make you aware of every detail a customer should know about the food they are consuming.
What is FSSAI?
The food Safety and Standard Authority of India is also known as FSSAI. It is a statutory organisation under the supervision of the Indian government's Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006 permitted the establishment of the FSSAI. The FSSAI seeks to protect and advance public health via appropriate legislation and food safety oversight.
The head of the FSSAI is a non-executive chairperson selected by the Central Government which holds or has attained a post with the Government of India (GoI) that does not fall below the secretary rank. New Delhi is hub to the FSSAI's administrative centre. In Delhi, Cochin, Guwahati, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Chennai consists of six regional offices for the same. In India, there are 72 state and union territory labs, 14 referral labs, and 112 commercial labs that have been granted certificates by the National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL).
Why is it on all your food items?
In India, FSSAI is responsible for maintaining food safety and standards. It seeks to serve food to everyone, yet of a high quality and standard. It guarantees that everyone must enjoy the food's quality. It makes healthy food available to all Indians. Additionally, it instructs the street sellers on how to comply with the 2006 Food Safety and Standards Act.
They will learn the value of healthy food from this, and street sellers will gain benefit from it as well. FSSAI has launched a number of projects, including Diet4life, which raises awareness of metabolic problems among the public.
FSSAI Act, 2006
Key features of the 2006 Food Safety and Standard Act
By switching from multi-level, multi-departmental control to a single line of command, the Act seeks to establish a single point of reference for all issues connected to food safety and standards.
The Act constituted each State's FSSAI and the State Food Safety Authorities.
2011 Food Safety and Standards Rule Highlights
The Food Safety Appellate Tribunal and its Registrar are established under the Rules to hear appeals involving food safety.
Highlights of the 2011 Food Standards and Safety Regulations
It includes licencing and registration, food business packaging and labelling, food product standards, and regulation of food additives.
It forbids and limits the acceptance of non-specified foods and food additives whose usage could be harmful to people's health.
It controls food advertising, offers provisions for food safety and organic food standards.
Functions of FSSAI
- All food manufacturing businesses must abide by the laws, norms, and regulations established by the FSSAI, which includes keeping the food hygienic and clean.
- Any business that deals with food must obtain a licence from the FSSAI and a certificate.
- Only the FSSAI tests and certifies the food produced by food firms as meeting standards and being of a certain quality.
- To maintain food safety and standards, FSSAI regularly inspects businesses involved in the production and manufacturing of food.
- The primary goal of FSSAI is to educate customers about the need to choose only wholesome, secure, and hygienic food products.
- The FSSAI conducts routine inspections of all registered food manufacturing facilities and maintains a report that is updated on a regular basis.
- The FSSAI ensures that food manufacturing businesses create food in accordance with their standards and laws.
- When the FSSAI discovers a concern about food safety, it must immediately notify the government to take appropriate action.
The Nestle India Limited Maggi Case: The FSSAI recommended a ban when it was discovered that the Maggi noodles had too much lead to be consumed by humans.
Cadbury India: In Cadbury's dairy milk, worms were reportedly discovered. The FSSAI found that the packing was inadequate and airtight and mandated that it be changed.
Initiatives by FSSAI
Heart Attack Rewind is the FSSAI's first major media initiative. It aims to promote the FSSAI's goal of getting rid of trans fat in India by 2022.
FSSAI-CHIFSS is a partnership between the CII-HUL and the FSSAI Initiative on Food Safety Sciences to encourage partnerships between the business community, academic community, and scientific community for food safety.
State Food Safety Index (SFSI): The FSSAI created the State Food Safety Index (SFSI) index to assess how well each state performed on five important food safety characteristics.
Human resources and institutional data, compliance, infrastructure and surveillance for food testing, training and capacity building, and consumer empowerment are among the criteria.
SFSI was launched in 2018–19 with the intention of bringing about a competitive and constructive shift in the nation's food safety ecosystem.
On June 7, 2019, the first World Food Safety Day, the State Food Safety Index for the academic year 2018–19, was unveiled.
To ensure that all Indians have access to safe, wholesome, and sustainable food, the Government of India and FSSAI have launched the Eat Right India Movement.
With its emphasis on preventative and promotional healthcare and major programmes like Ayushman Bharat, POSHAN Abhiyaan, Anemia Mukt Bharat, and Swachh Bharat Mission, it is in alignment with the National Health Policy of 2017.
Eat Right Station Certification: The certification is given by the FSSAI to railroad stations that meet standards for serving passengers with healthful meals as per the Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006.