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Food Safety and Standards Authority unable to implement a uniform licence scheme in Noida

NOIDA: February 4 was the deadline to get the FBO licence – for all eateries be it small restaurants or a chain – from Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). If a restaurant is found without licence, the authority can penalise it with hefty fine and even shut it down.

However, there are challenges for both FSSAI and restaurants. “FSSAI has begun with a few random checks to see if licences have been renewed or fresh licences have been attained for starting a food business. However, the central food authority faces trained manpower crunch but will surely act upon consumer complaint,” Ashwin Bhadri, business relations head at Equiniox Labs, which works as a consultant for FSSAI and does lab checks on its behalf.

There are anywhere between 50 lakh and 60 lakh eateries in the country. Food safety has been a perennial challenge in India with frequent cases of food adulteration and food poisoning.

Noida restaurateurs and other food business operators have welcomed the central food authority, FSSAI’s push for the implementation of the food business operator licence and registration to operate. It is an attempt to streamline and regulate the country’s burgeoning Rs 50,000 crore eating-out industry.

The deadline was for food business operators, who need to renew their licences but those starting a new business will have to mandatorily acquire FSSAI licence in order to operate.

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