FSSAI Relaxation to FBO

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FSSAI Relaxation to FBO

To facilitate the continuity of food business operations during the prevailing COVID-19 outbreak, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has announced some Relaxations to FBO.

The FSSAI has decided to give additional time to food business operators (FBOs) for the renewal of licenses and registrations till August 31st, 2021.

It has also decided to extend the timeline for the mandatory submissions of food business annual returns through FoSCoS by licensed food businesses till August 31st, 2021.

Synopsis of FSSAI Notification

As per the Notification dated 23rd June 2021, FSSAI is decided to facilitate the Food Business Operator (FBOs) and ensure ease of doing business by providing the following relaxations.

  • The dude date for filing Annual Returns by Manufactures and Importers extended till August 31st. The manufacturer or exporter need to file the return through FoSCoS only. A return submitted physically or through the mail will not be accepted.
  • Waiver of late fee for renewing the FSSAI license

The notification about the FSSAI Relaxation to FBO by Food Business is as follows:

FBO

Earlier announced FSSAI Relaxation to FBO

As per the Notification dated 20th April 2021, FSSAI was decided to facilitate the Food Business Operator (FBOs) and ensure ease of doing business by providing the following relaxations.

  • FSSAI has provided permission to temporarily operate food business (other than Manufacturers) based on 17-digits Application reference number
  • The Manufacturers were allowed to operate their food businesses with higher capacity, based on an application for modification of License
  • No pre-inspections were required for issuance of new FSSAI license/registration
  • Extension for the timeline for submission of online Annual Returns through FoSCoS
  • Waiver of late fee for renewing the license
  • New FSSAI Relaxation to FBO

The following relaxations granted through Notification dated 20th April 2021 shall cease with effect from 30th June 2021.

  • Permission to temporarily operate food business (other than Manufactures) based on 17-digits Application reference number.
  • In the case of Manufactures, they are allowed to operate their food businesses with higher capacity, based on an application for modification of License.
  • Limited inspection and re-inspections allowed.

However, given prevailing operational issues, FSSAI has decided to extend the relaxations up to 31st August 2021for the following provisions.

  • Extension for the timeline for submission of online Annual Returns through FoSCoS
  • Waiver of late fee for renewing the license

Extension of Food Business Annual Returns Filing Due Date

On account of the prevailing lockdown in India for the COVID-19 pandemic, the Food Business Operator (FBO) is facing difficulties in the submission of the Annual return.

Considering the issues, The timeline for submission of online annual yearly returns for the period 2020-21 due for submission on or before 30th, June 2021 has been extended till 31st August  2021.

The same has to be filed mandatorily through online mode i.e. through Food Safety Compliance System (FOSCOS). In this regard, the following procedural formalities need to be followed by FBO for filing food business annual Returns.

Food Business Annual Returns Filing

As per the revised guidelines of FSSAI, for food businesses involved in the manufacturing of milk and milk products, a half-yearly return (Form D2) has been discontinued. They shall be required to file the annual return for manufacturers as per the revised format online.

Note: A food business is required to file a separate FSSAI Annual return for every FSSAI license issued under the FSSAI regulations, irrespective of whether the same Food Business Operator holds more than one license.

Know more about the FSSAI Registration/Licensing in India

Eligible FBO for Annual Return Filing

Following Food Business Operator (FBO) need to file the FSSAI annual return online in the Form D-1 to the Food Licensing Authority about the category of food products manufactured or sold by them during the preceding financial year:

  • Food manufacturers
  • Labelers
  • Importers
  • Packers
  • Every FBO includes the ones dealing in milk and milk products.

Exemptions from Filing FSSAI Annual Return

According to the Food Safety and Standards (Licensing and registration) Regulations, 2011, the following food businesses are exempted from filing an FSSAI annual return online in India:

  • Fast food joints
  • Restaurants
  • Grocery stores
  • Canteens

Due Dates for the Submission of Form D1

The due date for annual return filing is 1st April to 31st March of every financial year. As per the FSSAI notification, the due date for submission of the annual return is extended till 31st August 2021.

Penalty for Late or Non-submission of Annual Returns

Non-submission of annual return for the food business beyond 31st May of every year will attract a late fee of Rs. 100 per day till the date of submission of FSSAI annual return.

Note: According to this notification, the penalty will not be deducted from the FBO till 31st August 2021.

Documents Required

The following type of documents is required for Filing FSSAI Annual Return:

  • Potable Water test Report for the period of April-September
  • Potable Water test Report for the period of October-March

New Online Procedure for Annual Return Filing

The revised format of Annual Return has already been incorporated in Food Safety Compliance System (FOSCOS) and the window for return filing for FY 2020-2021 has opened with effect from 1st, April 2021 onwards.

The FOB needs to login into Safety and Compliance System (FoSCoS). As mentioned above, the window for return filing for FY 2020-2021 has opened. The applicant needs to provide the following details in Form D1.

Annual_Return_Format
Annual_Return_Format

Details Required for Filing FSSAI Annual Return

The FBO need to provide the following details while filling the FSSAI Annual Return:

  • Number of Food Handlers Employeed
  • Number of Food Safety Supervisors
  • Number of FoSTac Trained Personnel
  • Number of inspection conducted
  • Changes in Layout Plan/Recall Plan/FSMS Plan
  • Details of Consumer Grievance Handling
  • KOB specific Data
  • Manufactures /Processors Details
  • Importers Details

Upon finalizing the details, the FBO can submit the details online to the licensing authority within the respective jurisdiction. The details of the licensing authority can be accessed through the official website of the FSSAI.

Note: Please note FSSAI doesn’t acknowledge confirming the successful submission of the returns.

Waiver of Late Fee for Renewing the FSSAI License

As per the Food Safety Standards (Licensing and Registration of Food Businesses) Regulations 2011], the FBO needs to pay a late of Rs. 100 to Rs. 3000 in case of not applying for renewal as early as 30 days before the expiry of license.

With this notification, FSSAI announced that no late fee for renewal of licenses shall be charged till 31st August 2021, i.e. no late fee for renewal application will be charged for licenses, if filed on or before 31st August 2021.

As the process for renewal of license and registration is completely online and renewals can be filed as early as 180 days before the expiry of license and registration, food businesses are advised to file the renewal application well in time to avoid the expiry of their licenses and registrations and causing unnecessary hassle to themselves.

FSSAI also clarified that the late fee applicable on renewals applied after 31st August 2021will be charged as per the provisions in FSS (Licensing and Registration of Food Businesses) Regulations 2011.

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Post by Renu Suresh

Renu is experience content writer specialised in compliances and company rules.