The online licencing and registration of food businesses in the district has got very poor response till now. As per the officials concerned the reason behind this poor response is the extension of last dates for registration by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) again and again.
As per the records of the civil surgeon’s office, Ludhiana, 725 licence and 850 registration have been made through online mode in Ludhiana till now. The number is too less even from the offline registration done till February 4, 2014. At that time, 2,150 food business operators in the city had got licence, and 14,750 operators had got registered.
Under the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006, it was made compulsory for all the food business operators to get registered with state authority. If a food business operator has an annual turnover of more than Rs 2 lakh, he has to take a licence from the state authority.
The pace of registration and making licences by the food business operators in Ludhiana is very slow, as there is a notion among the operators that deadline for registration will be extended again. Till now, the deadline for registration and licences have been extended in 2012, 2013, two times in 2014 and two times in 2015. Now, August 4 has been set as the new deadline for registration or licencing of food businesses.
District health officer Dr Abnash Kumar said, “Now, the process for registration and licencing has become totally online. The FSSAI has extended the deadline, but we can’t force anyone to get registered earlier.”
School college canteens remain a miss Under the Food Safety Act, canteens in schools and colleges also need to get registration or licence from the authorities. But, not many school or college canteen contractors have got themselves registered yet. This has worried the parents, whose children most of the time prefer to eat from canteen.
Besides, in the past health department also didn’t pay much heed to collect samples from school or college canteens. Recently health department collected samples of cornflakes and sandwiches from Sacred Heart Convent School, Sector 39, after a person filed a complaint with the civil surgeon.