Introduction to FSSAI (food licensing): What Does FBO Mean?
FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) is an independent government agency that issues food license online to various operators involved in the manufacturing, processing, storing, trading, catering, packing, and labeling, selling, exporting, and importing of food and other edibles. Individuals, or organizations, involved in handling food or food items at varying stages before reaching the customer are known as FBOs (Food Business Operators). As part of the FSSAI registration process, FBOs are issued a 14-digit license number, which is required to be printed on the products’ packages. An FBO’s registration will depend on factors like the size of the production, the turnover, the nature of the activities, etc.
After the FBOs comply with the FSSAI regulations, the FSSAI issues the food safety certificate. Several operators must hold licenses such as traders, manufacturers, restaurants, grocery vendors, importers, and exporters. FSSAI licenses certify that products handled by a person or establishment have gone through the specified quality checks, thereby lowering the chances of delivering adulterated or substandard products.
FBOs who need an FSSAI license are:
The following lines of business require an FSSAI license:
- Shops dealing in snacks, confectionery, or bakery products
- Whether permanent or temporary, food stalls prepare, distribute, store, and sell food products like chat shops, golgappa stands, fruit and vegetable stands, coffee shops, snacks stands, bread PKK stands, samosa stands, Chinese noodles stalls, South Indian tiffin stalls, sweet and juice stands, etc.
- Hawkers prepare and sell fresh food on the move using movable carts
- Milk vendors, milk chilling units, and Milkmen who deliver milk and milk products on a daily basis
- Processing units dealing with vegetable oil, meat, fish, etc.
- Animal slaughterhouses that supply meat such as mutton, chicken, lamb, etc
- Manufacturing and processing units that handle the repackaging of food
- Firms that deal in proprietary or novel foods
- Facilities that use cold processing to store food
- Persons or organizations that transport food products using specialized vehicles such as refrigerated vans or wagons, milk tankers, food trucks, etc.
- Several types of suppliers, distributors, individuals, and organizations involved with the marketing of newly launched food products may be found in this category
- The most common places to find snacks include hotels, bars, restaurants, and snack kiosks
- Restaurants, cafeterias, and midday meal outlets
- Vendors of food
- A banquet hall, a Dhaba, a caterer, a home baker, a food stall at a fair, or a religious establishment that serves food are some examples of outlets that provide food
- There are a number of firms that handle imports and exports of foods and other edible items
- Food e-commerce and cloud kitchens.
FBO stands for Food Business Operator in FSSAI (food licensing). See: Eligibility for FSSAI license for FBOs
FBOs can be classified into three broad categories based on their registration.
- Central Licensing of FSSAI (Large Scale Food Businesses)
- State Licensing for FSSAI (Medium Scale Food Businesses)
- Small Business Registration (Petty Food Business).
Large scale manufacturers, individuals, and organizations that deal in imports and exports, including FBOs that have an annual turnover of more than *20 crores, should obtain an FSSAI registration from the Central Government. An FBO that earns annual revenue of more than *12 lakh and a small or medium-sized unit, like a trader, a storage warehouse, a marketer, a transporter, etc, has to apply for the FSSAI license from the state government. Basic registration is available to units that have a turnover of less than Rs.12 lakh per annum. Form A must be filled out by FBOs who opt for basic registration and Form B by FBOs who wish to register with State and Central Governments.
The FSSAI license process for FBOs is as follows:
To apply for an FSSAI license, FBOs need to follow the following procedure.
The FBOs can make the application online via the FoSCos portal. Fill out and submit to the Food and Safety Department form B (For acquiring State or Central Government license) or form A (Basic registration).
Step 2: You must submit the required documents with the application for FSSAI registration. With form A or B, you can upload the documents to the FoSCos portal. The application and necessary documents can also be delivered physically to the Food and Safety Department
Step 3: A registration can either be accepted or rejected based on the accuracy of the filing. After scrutinizing the application and all documents submitted by the applicant, the verdict is provided within seven days of the date of application, either online or physically.
Step 4: Before granting a license, the department inspects the premises of the FBO if necessary
Step 5: Once satisfied with the FBO’s compliance with the FSSAI regulations, the department grants the FSSAI registration certificate with the 14-digit registration number. The certificate is also available on FoScos. FBOs must display the FSSAI registration certificate prominently at their place of business during business hours after receiving the certificate.