Are you looking to open a food business in India? Go ahead! It is difficult to start a food business, whether an industry or a restaurant. You must locate the right location, find employees and market it correctly. Business owners must complete the legal process for obtaining a food permit. All food business owners in India (i.e., All food business operators, from small hawkers to large-scale industries, must obtain the unique 14-digit FSSAI registration number or license – India’s food business permit.
The abbreviation of FSSAI is the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India. This organization monitors and regulates India’s food industry. It is an independent body established under the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare of the Government of India.
The Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 (FSS Act), which consolidates Indian food safety and regulation laws, has established the FSSAI. It oversees quality control and prevents food adulteration. It is responsible for registering and licensing Indian Food Business Operators (FBOs) and establishes the rules and regulations governing India’s food business operation.
FSSAI Registration / Food Business Registration
FSSAI Registration and License are required for all food businesses involved in producing, storing, distributing, and selling food products.
FSSAI Registration differs from FSSAI Licensing in that FBO should apply for the required registration or license depending on the nature and size of the business.
It’s a 14-digit license number or registration printed on all food packaging. This 14-digit number provides information about the assembling state and producer’s permit. This registration process is intended to increase FBOs’ accountability to ensure food products’ quality. Food Safety & Standards (Licensing & Registration of Food Businesses) Regulations 2011 regulate the licensing and registration procedures and requirements.
Food Business Operators (FBOs) Who Require FSSAI License / Registration
The Food Business Operators having any of the following kinds of businesses are required to obtain an FSSAI Registration/License:
- Retail shops and petty retailers such as Retail Shops, Snacks Shops, Confectionery or Bakery Shops, etc.
- Temporary stalls, fixed stalls, or food premises are involved in the preparation, distribution, storage, and sale of food products.
- Hawkers sell fresh or packaged food and travel (often on foot or movable wagons) from one place to the next.
- Dairy Units include Petty Milkman, Milk Vendors, and Milk Chilling Units.
- Vegetable Oil Processing Units.
- Slaughtering houses include meat shops, mutton shops, and chicken shops.
- Units for meat processing and fish processing
- All food manufacturing/processing units that include repackaging of food.
- Proprietary and novel food
- Storage facility for cold/refrigerated items
- Transporter of food products using a variety of vehicles such as insulated refrigerated vans/wagons, milk tankers, and food wagons.
- Distributor, wholesaler, distributor, and marketer for food products.
- Hotels, Restaurants, and Bars
- Cafeterias and canteens, including mid-day meals canteens.
- Food Vending Agencies, Caterer.
- Dhaba, PG offers food, Banquet halls catering to food needs, Home-Based Canteens, and Food stalls at fairs or religious institutions.
- Importers and exporters of food products, including food ingredients.
- E-Commerce food suppliers, including cloud kitchens.
Each type of FSSAI registration/license required by the businesses mentioned above depends on the eligibility criteria. FSSAI provides information on eligibility requirements for each type of business and the types of license/registration required.
Types of FSSAI Registrations or licenses:
FSSAI registrations are based on business type, turnover, and production capacity. FBOs may be eligible for basic, central, or state licenses, depending on the installed capacity, turnover, and other factors.
FSSAI Basic Registration: FSSAI basic registration is required for FBOs with a turnover of less than Rs.12 lakh per annum. To obtain FSSAI basic registration, the applicant must fill out Form A.
FSSAI State License: Food Business Operators with a turnover exceeding Rs.12 lakh and less than Rs.20 crore per annum need to apply for the FSSAI state license. For an FSSAI state license, the applicant must complete Form B.
FSSAI Central License: Food Business Operators with a turnover exceeding Rs.20 crore per annum must apply for the FSSAI central license. For FSSAI central license, the applicant must complete Form B.
Procedure for Obtaining FSSAI Registration/License Online
- FBOs can apply online for FSSAI registration by filling out and submitting the FSSAI Form A (application to Register) and Form B (applications for State and Central Licenses) can be found on the FoSCoS portal.
- All required documents must accompany the said forms. When you fill out the application, these documents should be uploaded online via FoSCos is the given placeholders.
- FSSAI application forms can be accepted or rejected or questioned upon by the Authority as per the FSSAI timelines which is usually seven days for registration and thirty days for license.
- The Department will review all documents.
- If necessary, the Department may inspect the food premises before issuing the FSSAI registration certificate or license.
- If the Department is satisfied the FBO meets the requirements, it will issue an FSSAI registration certification with the registration number and photo of the applicant’s email ID; or an FSSAI License with a license number and other details such as Technical person in charge, Form IX person etc.
- FBOs should prominently display the FSSAI registration certificate or license at their business location during business hours.
FSSAI Registration Eligibility
FSSAI Registration, a basic license, is required by all FBOs involved in small-scale food businesses. The following businesses are included in this category:
- An FBO that has an annual turnover not exceeding Rs. 12 lakh is eligible.
- Petty retailers dealing in food products.
- Anyone who makes or sells food items by himself.
- The temporary stall holder selling food.
- Anyone who distributes food to any religious or social gathering, except a caterer.
- Small-scale cottage industries that deal in the food industry and the following:
- Capacity to produce food (other than milk or meat) – up to 100 kg/ltr daily
- Milk collection, handling, and procurement – up to 500 litres daily
- Capacity to slaughter – 2 large or 10 small animals, or 50 birds per day, or less
FSSAI License Eligibility
FSSAI licenses must be obtained for all FBOs except small-scale businesses. FSSAI Licenses can be divided into two types: Based on the size and type of business, the Central FSSAI License or State FSSAI License can be used.
FBOs that are large importers or exporters of large-scale food business operations must register FSSAI with the central government. FBOs with small to medium-sized manufacturing units, transportation companies, marketers, traders, and other related activities must register FSSAI with the state government. FBOs must have a turnover of Rs 12 lakh to 20 crores to apply for a State License.
Other conditions include units that can produce up to 2MT per day and units that handle the business of up to 5000 liters daily. The license is required for all catering businesses, regardless of turnover, including 3-star hotels and higher repackers, relabelling, clubs, and canteens. The license can be renewed for a maximum period of five years and a minimum of one year.
FBOs having a turnover of more than Rs. 20 crores are eligible for a central license. This license is mandatory for certain FBOs such as all importers and exporters, proprietary food manufacturers, and FBOs manufacturing, processing supplements, non-specified foods after approval, head office etc. The maximum term is five years, while the minimum is one year.
Documents Required For FSSAI Registration / License
The following documents are required for FSSAI Registration:
- Government issued Photo ID such as AADHAAR, PAN, Voter ID etc.
- Proof of Address of Businesses activity (if address is other than as mentioned in Photo ID Card)
The following documents are required for FSSAI State license and Central license:
- Photo ID and address proof of business owner/director/authorized signatory
- Constitution certificate of business such as partnership deed, incorporation certificate, establishments license of the shop, etc.
- Possession proof of business facility such as an agreement of rent, utility bills, etc.
- Plan of food safety management system
- List of food products that would be manufactured/processed/stored/distributed.
- NOC by municipality or panchayat, health NOC called supporting documents (if required)
- Statement of ingredients and additives for each product in case of supplements or proprietary food.
- Processing unit plan consisting of area and dimension along with area-wise allocation.
- A complete list of Directors/Partners’ names, addresses, contact details, and photo IDs.
- List of equipment and machinery used along with the name, number, and capacity.
- Letter of the authority of the nominated responsible person from the manufacturer.
- Water analysis report
- Source of raw material for milk, meat, etc.
- Recall plan (if applicable)
- 100% export orientation unit form from the ministry of commerce.
- NOC from FSSAI, if applicable
- Code document of IE from DGFT
- Form IX
- Turnover supporting document
- Case specific documents as applicable to the importer/manufacturer/distributor etc. depending upon the kind of business.
FSSAI License Fee / Registration Cost
FSSAI registration fees must be paid by the applicant/FBO when submitting the FSSAI application form. These annual fees apply to all types of FSSAI registration/license:
- FSSAI Basic Registration – Fee of Rs. 100
- FSSAI State License – Fee between Rs. 2000 to Rs. 5000 (Based on the type of business carried out)
- FSSAI Central License – Fee of Rs. 7500
All fee indicated here, are excluding the GST.
FSSAI Registration Status
An applicant will be notified by SMS/Email at various stages of FSSAI’s application processing. An applicant can also track the status of FSSAI registration by entering the FSSAI application reference number after applying. This information is available on the FoSCoS website’s Track Application Status tab.
You can track the application status to see the different stages of FSSAI registration. If the FSSAI registration status shows ‘Application reverted’, the FSSAI authorities have returned the application for any modification or clarification. To avoid rejection, the applicant must submit the response within 30 calendar days of the revert date.
When the FSSAI authorities issue an FSSAI registration certificate, the FSSAI status will be shown as “Registration Certificate Issued.” or “License Issued.” Logging into FoSCoS will allow applicants to download the certificate.