Case Studies

Project Title

Revamping and building capacity for enforcement of new food safety law in India

Title Description

Sathguru assisted newly constituted Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) in shaping up the rules and regulations for food processing and retailing in the country.

Challenge/Problem statement/Situation analysis

Indian food industry was governed by multiple laws such as PFA, FPO, MMPO leading to lack of clarity in implementation and enforcement. These regulations were archaic with no provision for emerging food product categories and uniform new product approval guidelines. Also many critical elements governing food safety and surveillance such as food recall procedures, sample collection were not well defined. FSSAI was constituted under the Food Safety and Standard Act, 2006 to developed integrated food law for the country. FSSAI sought assistance from Sathguru to develop integrated modern food regulations that were aligned with international standards and practices.

Scope

The scope of Sathguru’s engagement included:

  1. Revamping the Rules and Regulations and de-novo framing of some of the critical regulatory frameworks for food products meant for human consumption.
  2. Framing necessary organization structure for the Regulatory Authority.
  3. Capacity building in the area of food safety surveillance and food safety management for FSSAI officials.
Approach

Sathguru adopted a consultative approach that integrated best practices and benchmarking for project execution:

  1. Review of the best practices and regulations for food safety from around the world such as FDA, Codex etc.
  2. Conducted consultation workshop to collect expectation and feedback from all stakeholders in food sector and developed draft regulations and guidelines.
  3. Conducted stakeholder sensitization and review workshops to apprise them of proposed regulations and guidelines and finalize the same.
  4. Developed framework for training FSSAI officials and dissemination of knowledge of new regulations to all stakeholders.
Recommendations
  • Sathguru recommended that organizational structure for FSSAI should focus on scientific, regulatory, research, surveillance and administrative functions. Sathguru also recommended that responsibilities for each function be defined in a manner to avoid conflict of interest.
  • Sathguru recommended standardization of regulations across all major product categories (Meat, Dairy, Nutraceutical & Functional food, Fruits & Vegetables) and incorporated the same in new regulations.
  • Sathguru recommended the need for guidelines for food recall procedures, sample collection and analysis and new product approval process and incorporated the same in new regulations.
  • Sathguru emphasized the need for training FSSAI official and sensitizing all stakeholders on new regulations and developed a framework for the same.
  • Sathguru recommended a research framework for extra mural research funding for food safety surveillance and technology advancement.