The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), grants licenses after a comprehensive evaluation and after an inspection of the conditions under which a Food Business operates on a daily basis. FBOs are thus applicable to receive a license only if they are required to follow the compliance which is given under the Food Safety Act, 2006.
However, sometimes back in October 2012, the FSSAI had permitted to certain categories of Food Business Operator removed from the purview of pre-inspection of its premises before the grant of the license under the FSS Act 2006. But it decided in May 2013 at a meeting which was held by the Chairperson of FSSAI, that the premises of FBOs must be inspected within a period of six months after the FSSAI License has been issued.
FSSAI however noted in an Office Memorandum which was dated 12th February 2015 that despite all of the earlier directions that have been issued already, the applications for the grant of the license were kept pending mainly because of the physical inspections of the premises was not carried out.
But the most important aspect of the evaluation by the FSSAI officials for granting of the license is the inspection. FBOs are thus required to make sure that they meet certain standards.
The article below tells us more about the Inspection Memorandum in order to get an FSSAI license by listing the external and the internal inspection checklist which you have to ensure:
The checklist which should be followed –
1. External Inspection
- Whether it is situated adjacent to a residential area (Clean/Unclean surroundings)
- Whether it is situated near an obnoxious industry (like fish canning, tanneries chemical plants fertilizer plants that are releasing hydrogen sulfide, sulfur etc.)
- There is a condition for a service road.
- Whether the boundary wall or the barrier that is provided in order to avoid an unauthorized entry of human beings or animals.
- (i) You are also required to see if the surrounding area is free from Cesspools, ponds, rat holes etc.
(ii) The presence of birds, crows, vultures etc., if any should be taken into consideration
- Whether there is a restriction on the entry to an unauthorized person
(i) Whether there is an incinerator or there are burial pits for the disposal of condemned carcasses where the wastes exist.
(ii) Whether some rendering plant exists.
- The conditions of the drainage system whether it is open or it is permanently installed underground.
- The arrangement of the disposal of waste material
- The source of water supply. Whether some identifying marks have been applied to the pipelines for an easy identification of the potable and of non-potable supply
- The condition of the animal house, holding pens, quarantine pens (Hygienic/unhygienic) and also their approximate distance from the processing plant.
- Whether washrooms and change rooms are provided for the workers or not. If washrooms are provided, you are required to check whether clean toilet facilities exist or not.
- Whether idle/condemned equipment & amp; machinery have been stored properly in order to avoid harboring of rodents, flies, insects etc.
- Whether the external walls are properly plastered and are free from crevices, holes, dampness.
- Whether there are different loading docks for edible and also inedible products which are provided and whether the loading docks are covered in order to avoid exposure of the material to the vulture, dropping off birds, flies and also rough weather.
- Whether the entry is restricted; and the entries and exits are with double doors having fly proofing and also that self-closing devices are provided or not.
- Whether the windows are made up of fly proofs.
- Whether the smoke chimney is at a sufficient height or not.
- Whether an antiseptic/disinfectant foot bath is provided at the entrance or not.
2. Internal Inspection
- Whether there is an adequate partition between the unclean and the clean departments; whether the walls and the ceilings are properly whitewashed.
- Whether the floor, walls, and the ceilings are properly plastered with the impervious material like cement.
- Fissures, holes, crevices, and dampness (present/absent).
- The condition of the floor/walls (Clean/Unclean).
- Whether the tiles are up to a sufficient height on the wall. Whether the windows are at a sufficient height and are away from the working platform, tables, cooking vats to avoid any contamination with dust, accidentally broken glass parts etc.
- Whether there is an adequate partitioning between the raw meat department filling department and the cooked meat department.
- Whether there are a separate entry and exit to above departments.
- Whether an adequate foot operated combination faucets with hot and cold water supply provided that it is along with liquid soap containers at each entry point
- Whether sufficient care is being exercised or not in order to ensure that each worker washes his hands properly before entering and leaving the factory (Note: It is thus preferable to provide an antiseptic solution for hand wash also).
- Whether sufficient sign boards indicating “NOT TO SPIT/SMOKE” in the premises are displayed or not.
- Whether an artificial/natural lighting is adequate or not and the bulbs/tube light is away from the working equipment in order to avoid accidental falling off the broken glass pieces in the meat products.
- Whether there is a provision for exhaust fans or not.
So these are a few checkpoints, which are checked during inspection for the license of Fssai. The business operator should take care of these few things in order to avoid the exemption.
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