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FOOD SAFETY ADMINISTRATION :
1. 1. Introduction:
The Government of India has enacted the Food Safety and Standards Act,2006 (34 of 2006) and it has come into force throughout the country from 5th August 2011 by repealing the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act 1954 and seven other orders specified in the Second Schedule of the Act 34 of 2006.
1. 2. Creation of New Department:
The tasks of Food Administration and Drug Control are in many ways akin to each other and have synergy. They need greater co-ordination and integration of licensing procedures. The Government has therefore proposed to bring the Food Safety and Drug Control under one administration called the Food Safety and Drug Control Administration. Government has therefore issued orders for the formation of a new department called Food Safety and Drug Administration Department.
1. 3. Appointment of Commissioner of Food Safety:
A Food Safety Commissioner in the rank of Commissioner and Secretary to Government has been appointed to the new department. On the Food Safety side, he will be assisted by the Director (Food Safety), a post filled by an Additional Director of Public Health and Preventive Medicine. The Commissioner of Food Safety will also supervise the functioning of the Director of Drug Control.
1. 4. Appointment of Designated Officers (DOs):
32 Designated Officers have been appointed for all the 32 revenue districts to implement the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006. Supporting staff have been sanctioned for the formation of the office of the Designated Officer. In our State, Health Officers / Medical Officers have been appointed as Designated Officers.
1.5. Appointment of Food Safety Officers (FSOs) :
385 Food Safety Officers at the rate of one for each block and 199 Food Safety Officers for the Municipalities and Municipal Corporations have been appointed for the implementation of the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006. These Food Safety Officers have been drawn from the cadre of Health Inspectors on the rural side and Sanitary Inspectors on the urban side who are qualified to be Food Safety Officers under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.
1.6. Appointment of Adjudicating Officers:
The District Revenue Officers (Additional District Magistrates) of each district have been appointed as the Adjudicating Officers under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006. Adjudicating Officers have been appointed for all the 32 Revenue Districts.
All the 32 Designated Officers have been imported with training for 5 days on the provisions of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 and the Rules and Regulations made thereunder. Similarly, training to all 32 Adjudicating Officers has been given for a period of 3 days on the said Act. This training has been given by the resource persons of Food Safety and Standards Authority of India. All the Food Safety Officers have also been given training on the provisions of the said Act and Rules.
1.8. Registration Certificates and Licenses:
As per the provisions of the Food Safety and Standards Regulations 2011, any Food Business Operator whose annual turnover exceeds Rs.12 lakh has to obtain License from the State or Central Authority as specified under the Act. Others get the Certificate of Registration. In Tamil Nadu, the Designated Officers will be the Licensing Authorities and Food Safety Officers are the Registering Authorities under the Act. Online Licensing / Registration started from June’2013.