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FSSAI to fund states for developing infra facilities

Food Safety and Standard Authority of India (FSSAI) today said that of the Rs 4,500 crore cleared by NDC under the 12th Five Year Plan, 70 per cent would be given to states to develop infrastructure facilities.

“Around 70 per cent of the Rs 4,500 crore granted by the National Development Council (NDC) for five years period to us shall be given to states to set up infrastructure facilities,” FSSAI Director Enforcement Dr Surender Singh Ghonkrokta told PTI.

“We have 640 districts across the country, and fund allocation will be district wise. There is a plan to have at least one FSSAI accredited testing laboratory over five to six districts,” he said on the sidelines of a seminar related to Vibrant Gujarat-2013 event.

The food sector regulator estimates that with the new Food Safety and Standard Act-2006 coming into effect, the number of licensees under its fold could go upto 40-50 lakh, from the current 3.5 odd lakh.

“The licenses issued have gone up from one odd lakh to 3 to 3.5 lakh. With change from old to new regime we expect 40-50 lakh licensees to be there as new food business operators shall join in,” Ghonkrokta said.

He said effort is to have a self-compliant and participative enforcement structure like shown by few states such as Gujarat and Maharashtra.

According to Ghonkrokta, Gujarat’s good governance model on ensuring street food safety is likely to be replicated in eight other cities like Bhubaneshwar, Delhi, among others.

Industry estimates say nearly 80 per cent of consumers are accessing street food.

“Gujarat is among the first few states to show good governance model to regulate street food vendors through a co-operative like movement. This model would be replicated in other states,” he said.

“Eight cities have been identified where model of street food regulation shall be replicated,” Ghonkrokta said, referring to food street at Law Garden area here.

The Gujarat Food and Drug Control Administration (FDCA) has joined hands with Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) to ensure food safety and implement hygiene standards at the street food stalls situated in Law Garden here

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