A food business operator who wishes to start a food business should get a FSSAI License. Every small and medium sized manufacturer, distributors, retailers, marketers engaged in the food business is required to get FSSAI State License. Apart from this, there are two other licenses- FSSAI Basic Registration and FSSAI Central License. In this article, we shall discuss about FSSAI State License.
What is FSSAI?
FSSAI stands for Food Safety and Standards Authority of India. It comes under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in India. FSSAI regulates and governs the food business in India. They have laid down science based standards for food articles to be maintained by all food business operators functioning in India. FSSAI grants Licenses and registration to FBOs in India along with laying down rules and regulations for food businesses.
FSSAI makes sure that the people involved in the food business, like those involved in manufacturing, distribution, selling, processing, and importation of food to meet the guidelines and that food product is safe for human consumption.
What are the different types of FSSAI registration/License?
Different types of FSSAI registration/License are as follows:
- Basic Registration– For petty food businesses having an annual turnover of up to 12 lakh rupees;
- State License– For small and medium sized food businesses having an annual turnover between 12 lakh to 20 crore rupees;
- Central License– For big businesses having an annual turnover of more than 20 crore rupees.
What is the significance of FSSAI State License?
Everyone wants that the food they serve as part of their business is free of any harmful content. Therefore FSSAI has laid down certain standards and criteria for conducting food business as food is something that directly affects our health. In this licensing is one of the criteria.
The significance of the FSSAI License has increased tremendously as it ensures that the quality and hygiene of food is maintained. This helps in gaining more customers and maintain the standard in the market.
Eligibility for FSSAI State License
The basic criteria for applying for this license is that the food businesses should have an annual turnover ranging between 12 lakh rupees to 20 crore rupees.
The food business can apply to the state government where the business is based. Other eligibilities are as follows:
- Production and processing units of vegetable oil by solvent extraction process and refineries including oil expeller unit;
- Hotels of 4 star rating or less;
- Dairy units including the milk chilling units with a daily limit between 500 to 50000 L;
- Storage units having a capacity of less than 50,000 MT yearly;
- All food processing units with a daily capacity of not less than 100 kg/L to up to 2 MT; and
- Business having a daily slaughtering capacity of more than 2 and up to 50 large animals/ capacity of handling more than 10 small animals and up to 150 small animals/ daily capacity of more than 50 to 1000 poultry birds.
What are the documents needed for FSSAI State License?
While going through the process of license application, you would be required to submit certain documents. It may vary from one license to other.
The following documents are required for applying for State License:
- The particulars of Directors, Partners, Proprietors, etc. with address and contact details;
- A passport size photograph of the applicant;
- ID proof and address proof of the applicant;
- Applicant’s PAN card;
- The copy of property papers, if the business place is owned by the applicant and the copy of rent agreement, if the place of business is rented.
- Details regarding the source of materials;
- Duly signed and completed form;
- List of all machinery and types of equipment used in the unit;
- NOC from the Municipality;
- Details of the food category to be served and complete details of the product to b manufactured;
- Form IX;
- Authorization letter including the name and address; and
- Certificate of plan related to the food safety management system.
Procedure of obtaining FSSAI State License
The following steps can be followed to obtain the license:
- The application for State License is initiated by submitting Form B. The form should be filed at the time when the turnover of the food business is under 20 crores and whose zone of activity is limited to state.
- The application should be annexed with an affidavit, self declaration and an annexure as applicable.
- The application can be approved or rejected by the department depending upon the form submitted and details entered therein.
- In case the information is correct and complete documents are attached, the authority shall issue the license. The license is issued for a period of 1 to 5 years.
- The applicant can renew the license from time to time to extend its validity.
Features of FSSAI License
Some of the features are as follows:
- Obtaining license can allow you to operate for 1 to 5 year period as per the scale and requirement of business. After that, you can renew the license as well.
- The requirement of this license varies as per the type of food business and the nature of operations; and
- In case a food business operator operates without a license, penal charges can be imposed.
Penalty for Non-Compliance
The FSSAI Act lays down penalty for non-compliance with the standards laid down by the FSSAI. Such non-compliance could vary from operating without a valid license to selling sub-standard food or selling food with any extraneous matter. Penalty in the form of fine and imprisonment have been provided under the Act in case of occurrence of any non-compliance.
FSSAI State License is a must for those that are eligible and operate food business in India. Operating without this license can have serious ramifications. Therefore you are advised to apply for FSSAI Registration/License and, if required, seek the help of a professional.
Read our article: What is the Procedure of Applying for FSSAI Central License?
Ashish M. Shaji has done his graduation in law (BA. LLB) from CCS University. He has keen interests in doing extensive research and writing on legal subjects especially on corporate law. He is a creative thinker and has a great interest in exploring legal subjects.