Planning to start up a food business? None can be commenced unless a valid license is obtained, therefore, it becomes essential to get one. There are 23 licenses which the FSSAI issues. Wondering about the modality of getting a food license in India ? Here’s what you need to do:
1. Fill the application form (Form B) given in The Food Safety and Standards (Licensing and Registration of Food Businesses), Regulations 2011.
2. Attach the following with the application form and send it to the Licensing Authority (State or Central):
- A self-attested declaration as provided in the format in Annexure-1
- Copies of documents provided in Annexure-2 of the Regulations.
- Fees prescribed in Schedule-3 depending upon the category your food business falls in.
3. If the Licensing Authority requires any additional information relating to the application or if the application is found to be incomplete, you will be informed in writing within 15 days of receipt of the application.
You’ll be asked to give such additional information or to complete the application, within 30 days from such intimation. However, it must be noted that in case, if you fail to do the same, your application for license will be rejected.
4. Once the complete application is received including the additional information (if asked for) by the Authority, an Application ID number is issued to you that will used for reference in all future correspondence between you and the Licensing Authority. Within 60 days of issue of such an Application ID number, you will be provided with the license.
5. After the issue of Application ID number, the Licensing Authority may direct an officer to inspect the premises in which your business is to be opened.
This is done in the manner prescribed by the regulations of Food Safety and Standard Authority of India.
Such Inspecting Officer may issue a notice to you, guiding on necessary steps to be taken or changes to be made in your premises to ensure general sanitary and hygienic conditions.
You will be needed to carry out the required steps, changes or alterations and intimate the Licensing Authority about it within 30 days or within the time period allowed by the Licensing Authority.
6. Within 30 days from receipt of an inspection report excluding the time taken by you in complying with the advice and verification thereof, the concerned Licensing Authority shall consider the application and may either grant license or reject the application.
However, before refusing your license application, you shall be given an opportunity of being heard and if the Authority still decides to reject your application, the reasons for refusal shall be recorded in writing.
7. The Licensing Authority will issue you a License in Format C under Schedule 2 of these Regulations, a true copy of which will be needed to be displayed at a prominent place at all times within your business premises. And you are ready to go ahead with that great business of yours!
Please do note that now a license application can be filled online too:
- An online form is to be filed which, when successfully submitted will give you a unique Reference ID for the application.
- You are required to take a printout of the ‘Acknowledgment’ and ‘Online Application Form’ and attach the fee and supported documents required as part of the application and submit the application to your State Authority or Regional Office of Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, within 15 days from the date of submission of application online.
Every business dealing with any aspect of food, be it packaging, storage or institutions like schools and colleges need an FSSAI license to ensure smooth functioning of the same. It is imperative we all pledge ourselves to comply with relevant authorities.