Business

FSSAI Food Adulteration Punishments in India

Food Safety and Standard Authority of India (FSSAI) is a governing body that lays down science based standards for food articles and controls the manufacture, storage, allotment, sale and import to make sure that the food is safe for humans to consume. These procedures are ascertained to avoid food adulteration and it is made mandatory for entities involved in the manufacturing, storing, transportation or selling of food products to obtain FSSAI online registration and comply with FSSAI regulations.

Adulteration

Adulteration refers to mixing substance of an inferior or harmful quality with food or drink that is intended to be sold. Food or drink becomes impure and unfit for consumption after adulteration. Adulteration can be deliberated by reducing substances to food or by manipulating the natural properties of food intentionally. This happens either due to ignorance or due to improper physical conditions for food quality maintenance.

The Punishment given for Adulteration

Stringent punishment would be imposed on people who adulter food pr food products as per the regulations of FSSAI. The penalty enforced on a person who prevents a Food Inspector from taking a sample or exercising his duty is a minimum imprisonment of six months which may extend upto 3 years or a minimum fine of Rs 1000.

Following are the misconduct or faul-practices which are punishable:

  • Import, manufacture, storage, sale or distribution of any adulterated food article by allowing its quality or purity to decrease below the prescribed standard, or is misbranded, or in contravention of any provision of the Act or Rules. It can have a penalty of a minimum imprisonment which may extend upto life and minimum fine of Rs. 1000
  • Import, manufacture, storage, sale or distribution of any adulterant which is not injurious to health. This offense can have a penalty of a minimum imprisonment which may extend upto life and minimum fine of Rs. 1000
  • Preventing a Food Inspector from exercising his duties or refusing/restricting him from collecting a food sample. It can have a penalty of a minimum imprisonment which may extend upto life and minimum fine of Rs. 1000
  • Manipulating or surrendering a false warranty in respect of any food article. Import, manufacture, storage, sale or distribution of any food article which is adulterated or use of any adulterant which is injurious to health is being used is a punishable offence. It can have a penalty of a minimum imprisonment which may extend upto life and minimum fine of Rs. 1000
  • Sale or distribution of any food article containing poisonous or other harmful ingredients which is injurious to health and can cause death or grievously harm the body. This offense could have a penalty of a minimum imprisonment which may extend upto life and minimum fine of Rs. 5000.

Procedure for Checking Food Adulteration

The State Governments hold authority to implement and enforce the Food Safety and Standards Act. The State Food Safety Officers collect random samples of food items and sends it to the laboratories recognized by the FSSAI for analysis and further proceedings. Samples, if found to contain adulterants, severe action is taken by the authorities as per the provision of the FSSAI Act.

Powers of Food Safety Officer

A food safety officer is the authorized person to inspect the safety and security of food that is being served in restaurants or street food stalls. In case the food inspected by an officer is not fresh or had got spoilt, the FSSAI officer has all the rights to stop production of such food and issue a warning in writing to the organizer. Further, Food Safety Officer can also search or inspect any place with the help of the police force. Usually, the search is controlled or managed by a search warrant issued under the penal code.

A food safety inspector holds the authority to inspect the safety and security of food that is being served in restaurants or street food stalls. In case, the food inspector finds out that the food is not fresh and it is not edible, the FSSAI inspector has complete authority to cease the production of such food and can issue a warning to the organizer. Predominantly, the search is controlled and managed by a search warrant which issued under the penal code.

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