FSSAI

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), has issued a show-cause notice to IndiGo for allegedly serving unsafe food to a passenger on its flight on December 29

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) was instituted in 2008 by the Food Safety and Standards (FSS) Act of 2006, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) reigns supreme in safeguarding food safety nationwide. It champions the cause of secure and nourishing sustenance for all.

  • Its primary mandate is to ensure the availability of safe and wholesome food for human consumption.
  • It achieves this by:
    • Laying down science-based food standards
    • Regulating the manufacture, storage, distribution, sale, and import of food
    • Promoting a safe and healthy food culture

Structure and Composition:

  • The FSSAI is headed by a chairperson appointed by the Central Government.
  • It has 22 non-official members from various stakeholder groups, including:
    • Nutritionists
    • Consumer representatives
    • Food industry representatives
    • Scientists
    • Experts from related fields
  • The FSSAI is assisted by Scientific Committees and Panels in setting food standards.

Functions:

  • Developing and implementing food safety standards: The FSSAI sets science-based standards for food products, additives, contaminants, packaging, and labeling. These standards are based on international best practices and risk assessment principles.
  • Licensing and registration of food businesses: All food businesses in India must obtain a license or registration from the FSSAI. This helps to ensure that food businesses are operating hygienically and following food safety regulations.
  • Monitoring and enforcement: The FSSAI has the power to inspect food premises, take samples for testing, and initiate legal action against violators of food safety regulations.
  • Consumer education and awareness: The FSSAI raises awareness about food safety among consumers through various initiatives, such as mass media campaigns, workshops, and training programs.

Challenges:

  • Inadequate manpower and infrastructure: The FSSAI faces challenges due to a shortage of trained personnel and inadequate infrastructure for food testing and enforcement.
  • Adulteration and contamination: Food adulteration and contamination remain major concerns in India. The FSSAI needs to continue strengthening its surveillance and enforcement mechanisms to address these issues.
  • Awareness and compliance: There is a need to improve awareness about food safety regulations among both consumers and food businesses.

Initiatives:

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