FSSAI Penalty

FSSAI Penalty and Offenses

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FSSAI Penalty and Offenses

The Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006 was established to consolidate the laws relating to food and to establish the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) for laying down science-based standards for articles of food and to regulate their manufacture, storage, and distribution, sale, and import, to ensure availability of safe and wholesome food for human consumption. Therefore, to regulate the food industry, the FSSAI Act prescribes several penalties and offenses for contravening. This article will look at some of the significant FSSAI fines and violations.

Sections under which penalties are issued

The provisions relating to offenses and penalties are specified under section 48. Penalties are given from Sections 49-67 of the FSSAI Act.

Penalties for being non-compliant under the FSSAI:

Every business needs to be compliant with the laws and guidelines of the concerned authority and government. The food business needs to be compliant as it has the health of humans on its brink. The penalties under chapter 9 of the FSSAI act, there are the following sections which include the following:

Section 50: Penalty for selling food not of the nature or substance, or quality demanded 

Any person who sells to the purchaser’s prejudice any food which is not in compliance with the provisions of this FSSAI Act or the regulations or of the nature or substance or quality demanded by the purchaser shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding five lakh rupees.

They provided that the persons covered under sub-section (2) of section 31 shall, for such non-compliance, be liable to a penalty not exceeding twenty-five thousand rupees.

Section 51: Penalty for sub-standard food

Any person who, whether by himself or by any other person on his behalf, manufactures for sale or stores or sells or distributes or imports any sub-standard food article for human consumption shall be liable to a penalty which may extend to five lakh rupees.

Section 52: Penalty for misbranded food

Any person who, whether by himself or by any other person on his behalf, manufactures for sale or stores or sells or distributes or imports any article of food for human consumption which is misbranded shall be liable to a penalty which may extend to three lakh rupees.

The Adjudicating Officer may issue a direction to the person found guilty of an offense under this section for taking corrective action to rectify the mistake, or such article of food shall be destroyed.

Section 53: Penalty for misleading advertisement

Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person publishes or is a part of a publication that advertises to falsely describes food and is possible to deceive or trick as to the nature/substance/or quality of any food or provides a dishonest guarantee, is liable to a penalty which may extend to ten lakh rupees.

Section 54:  Penalty for food containing extraneous matter

Any person, whether by himself or by any other person on his behalf, manufactures for sale or stores or sells or distributes or imports any article of food for human consumption containing extraneous matter shall be liable to a penalty which may extend to one lakh rupees.

Section 55: Failure to comply with the directions of FSO

If any food business operator or importer fails to comply with the requirements under the act without any basic or reasonable ground is liable to a penalty which may extend to two lakh rupees per the directions of the Food Safety Officer.

Section 56: Penalty for unhygienic or unsanitary processing or manufacturing of food

Any person who, whether by himself or by any other person on his behalf, manufactures or processes any article of food for human consumption under unhygienic or unsanitary conditions shall be liable to a penalty that may extend to one lakh rupees.

Section 57: Possessing Adulterant

If any person themself or through any other person on his behalf, manufacture/process/imports/sells/or distributes any adulterant, is liable to the below-mentioned penalty:

  • A penalty not exceeding two lakh rupees if such adulterant is not injurious to health
  • A fine not exceeding ten lakh rupees if such adulterant is injurious to health

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has recommended stringent punishment to curb food adulteration following the Supreme Court order. Those adulterating food products could face life imprisonment and a penalty of up to Rs 10 lakh as per the amendments proposed by the regulator FSSAI in its 2006 food safety and standards law.

Process for Checking Food Adulteration

The implementation and enforcement of the Food Safety and Standards Act, of 2006 rests with State Governments. Random samples of food items are drawn by the State Food Safety Officers and sent to the laboratories recognized by the FSSAI for analysis. In cases, where samples are found to contain adulterants, action is taken as per the provision of the FSSAI Act.

Powers of Food Safety Officer

A food safety officer is the authorized person to inspect the safety and security of food that is being served in restaurants or street food stalls. In case the food inspected by an officer is not fresh or had got spoilt, the FSSAI officer has all the rights to stop production of such food and issue a warning in writing to the organizer. Further, Food Safety Officer can also search or inspect any place with the help of the police force. Usually, the search is controlled or managed by a search warrant issued under the penal code.

Section 58: Contravention of FSSAI Rules

 If any person who violates or opposes the rules and regulations as stated under the FSSAI act is liable to a penalty that may extend to two lakh rupees.

Section 59: Punishment for unsafe food

Any person who, whether by himself or by any other person on his behalf, manufactures for sale or stores or sells or distributes or imports any article of food for human consumption which is unsafe shall be punishable:

  • Where such failure or contravention does not result in injury, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months and also with a fine which may extend to one lakh rupees;
  • where such failure or contravention results in a non-grievous injury, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year and also with a fine which may extend to three lakh rupees;
  • where such failure or contravention results in a grievous injury, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six years and also with a fine which may extend to five lakh rupees;
  • where such failure or contravention results in death, with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than seven years but may extend to imprisonment for life, and with a fine which shall not be less than ten lakh Rupees.

Section 60: Punishment for interfering with seized items

If any person illegally or without the permission of the Food Safety Officer holds/switches/transfers/or damages any such food/vehicle/package/labeling/or advertising matter that has been confiscated, is punishable with imprisonment for a duration which may extend to six months and also with fine which may extend to two lakh rupees.

Section 61: Punishment for false information

 if any person gives in false details as required under the FSSAI act is punishable with imprisonment for a duration which may extend to three months and a fine which may extend to two lakh rupees.

Section 62: Punishment for obstructing or impersonating an FSO

If any person tries to or does threaten/excuse/resist/obstruct/intimidate/or assault the Food Safety Officer (FSO) during his checks or hours of exercising inspection is punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months and also with fine which may extend to one lakh rupees.

Section 63: Punishment for carrying out a business without an FSSAI license

If any person or food business operator (except the persons exempted from licensing under sub-section (2) of section 31 of this Act), himself or by any person on his behalf who is required to obtain a license, manufacturers, sells, stores or distributes or imports any article of food without a permit, shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months and also with a fine which may extend to five lakh rupees.

Learn more about FSSAI Food Business License.

Section 64: Punishment for subsequent offenses

If any person is found guilty as per the law under the FSSAI act is again commits and is convicted of the same is liable to the following penalty-

  • FSSAI license being canceled
  • An additional fine daily which may extend up to one lakh rupees, where the offense is a continuing one
  • twice the punishment, which might have been imposed on a first conviction, subject to the sentence being maximum provided for the same offense

Section 65: Compensation in case injury or death of consumer

f any person themself or through any other person on his behalf, manufacture/process/imports/sell/or distributes any article of food inducing injury to the consumer or to his death, shall be lawful for the Adjudicating Officer or as the case may be, the court to direct him to pay compensation to the victim or the legal representative of the victim, a sum-

  • not exceeding three lakh rupees in case of grievous injury
  • not less than five lakh rupees in case of death
  • not exceeding one lakh rupees in all other cases of injury

Note: The compensation is processed six months from the date of occurrence of the incident and as early as possible. If the case reaches death, an interim relief shall be paid to the next of kin within thirty days of the incident.

Section 66: Offences by Companies

The FSSAI Act prescribes the following penalties for offenses by companies – Private Limited Companies, One Person Companies, and Limited Companies:

Suppose a company has committed an offense under the FSSAI act. In that case, every person in charge of the company when the offense was committed is held responsible and deemed guilty of the crime and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

Provided that where a company has different establishments or branches or different units in any establishment or branch, the concerned Head or the person in charge of such establishment, branch, or team nominated by the company as responsible for food safety shall be liable for infringement in respect of such establishment, branch or unit:

Notwithstanding anything in sub-section (1), where a Company has committed an offense under this Act, and it is proved that the offense has been committed with the consent or connivance of or is attributable to any neglect on the part of any Director, Manager, Secretary or other Officer of the Company, such Director, Manager, Secretary or other Office shall also be deemed to be guilty of that offense and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

Section 67: Imports of food in contravention of the FSSAI Act

If any person who imports any article of food which is in contravention of the provisions of this FSSAI Act, rules and regulations made there under, shall, in addition to any penalty to which he may be liable under the conditions of the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act, 1992 (22 of 1992) and the Customs Act, 1962 (52 of 1962) be also liable under the FSSSAI Act and shall be proceeded against accordingly.

Any such article of food shall be destroyed or returned to the importer if permitted by the competent authority under the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act, 1992 (22 of 1992) of the Customs Act, 1962 (52 of 1962), or any other Act, as the case may be.

Section Offense Penalty
Persons covered  Fine (Rs.) Imprisonment
50 Selling food, not of the nature or substances or quality demanded Seller 5 Lakh
Penalty in case of Petty food business operator for non-compliance under Section 50 shall not exceed Rs. 25000
51 Sub-standard food Manufacturer, Seller, Storage, Distributor, Importer 5 Lakhs
52 Misbranded food Manufacturer, Seller, Storage, Distributor, Importer 3 Lakhs
53 Misleading advertisement: False description; Or Publisher or any person involved in publishing 10 Lakhs
54 Food contains extraneous matter Manufacturer, Seller, Storage, Distributor, Importer 1 Lakhs
55 Failure to comply with the direction Food business operators or importers 2 Lakhs
56 Unhygienicor unsanitary: Processing; or Manufacture Manufacturer or processor 1 Lakhs
57 Possessing adulterant Manufacturer, Seller, Storage, Distributor, Importer

Adulterant is not injurious to health – 2 lakh

Adulterant is  injurious to health – 10 lakh

 

Life imprisonment
58 Contraventions for which no specific penalty is provided Any person 2 Lakh
59 Punishment for unsafe food Manufacturer, Seller, Storage, Distributor, Importer

No injury – 1Lakh

Non-Grievous injury – 3Lakh

Grievous injury – 5 Lakh

No injury – 6 months

Non-Grievous injury – 1 year

Grievous injury – 6 years

60 Punishment for interfering with seized items Any person 2 Lakh Six months
61 Punishment for false information Any person, as per the directions under the FSSAI Act 2 Lakh Three months
62 Punishment for obstructing or impersonating an FSO Any Person 1 Lakh Three months
63 Punishment for carrying out a business without a license Any Person, Food Business operator 5 Lakh Six months
64 Punishment for subsequent offenses Any Person Fine on a daily basis – 1Lakh
65 Compensation in case of injury or death of a consumer Any Person

5 Lakh in case of death

3 lakh in case of Grievous injury

1 lakh in case of all other cases of injury

For more information about FSSAI Act Food Business License or FSSAI Product Approval, visit IndiaFilings.com.

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