Consequences and Penalties of Non-Compliance in FSSAI

Consequences and Penalties of Non-Compliance in FSSAI
11 November 2019

Consequences and Penalties of Non-Compliance in FSSAI

What is FSSAI

FSSAI stands for the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India. It is a self-governing body established under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. It comes under the Food Safety and Standards Authority Act, 2006, which includes all the laws concerning food safety and regulation in India. Being responsible for protecting and raising food safety and standards along with seeking better public health, the FSSAI take certain measure into account to check if every food-related issue is solved and making sure food sold, made, delivered all over the country is proper and as per the guidelines present in the act. 

Compliance under FSSAI

The Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 provides the legal working body under this act with the act being the fundamental law including every regulation taken for the food products. FSSAI aims in: 

  1. providing the basic safety of food.
  2. laying down science-based standards for articles of food and
  3. Regulating the manufacture, storage, distribution, import and sale of food.

The Food Safety and Standards Act (FSS) is a stock for all the archaic laws, rules and regulations for food safety. The FSS Act included the 7 older acts in its stock such as given below:

  1. Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, 1954
  2. Fruit Products Order, 1955 
  3. Vegetable Oil Products (Control) Order, 1947
  4. Solvent Extracted Oil, De- Oiled Meal and Edible Flour (Control) Order, 1967 
  5. Meat Food Products Order, 1973 
  6. Edible Oils Packaging (Regulation) Order 1988
  7. Milk and Milk Products Order, 1992.

Any food selling, delivering, making company/shop/or any such place if try to go astray from these rules as per the FSSAI, there are certain penalties that are to be faced by those not being compliant. 

Penalties for being non-compliant under the FSSAI:

Every industry needs to be compliant as per the laws and guidelines of the concerned authority and government. The food industry is one such industry that needs to be compliant as it has the health of humans on its brink. The penalties under chapter 9 of the act, there are the following sections which include:

Section 48: According to section 48, the general provisions relating to offences under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 are adding/using/abstracting/subjecting any article/substance to the food that might be injurious to health.

Section 49: As per the general provisions relating to penalty under the act states, that the arbitrator must consider certain points before she/he decides on the level of the penalty. These points include: 

  1. The consideration of the amount of profit or illegal advantage, wherever quantifiable, made as a result of the infringement
  2. The recurring nature of the infringement or violation
  3. The amount or level of loss caused due to the infringement
  4. If the infringement is in his knowledge
  5. or any other valid factor.

Section 50: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, the penalty for selling food which is not as per the demand/quality/ nature/or substance as required by the purchaser, then the person selling the food is liable to a penalty of rupees not exceeding the five lakh rupees value. 

Section 51: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, the penalty for any person (himself/herself or through other people) sells/stores/distributes/or imports any article of food which is sub-standard is liable to a penalty which may extend to five lakh rupees.

Section 52: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, the penalty for any person (himself/herself or through other people) sells/stores/distributes/or imports any article of food which is misbranded is liable to a penalty which may extend to three lakh rupees. The  Adjudicating Officer if finds any person guilty of such offence under the act is asked to take the corrective measures to amend the actions or else the article of the food shall be destroyed.

Section 53: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person publishes or is a part of the publication that advertises to falsely describes food and is possible to deceive or trick as to nature/substance/or quality of any food or provides a dishonest guarantee, is liable to a penalty which may extend to ten lakh rupees.

Section 54: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, the penalty for any person (himself/herself or through other people) sells/stores/distributes/or imports any article of food comprising extraneous matter, is liable to a penalty which may extend to one lakh rupees.

Section 55: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any food business operator or importer fails to comply with the requirements under the act without any basic or reasonable ground is liable to a penalty which may extend to two lakh rupees as per the directions of the Food Safety Officer.

Section 56: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person himself/herself or through any other person on his behalf, manufacture or process any article of food under unhygienic or unsanitary conditions is liable to a penalty which may extend to one lakh rupees.

Section 57: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person himself/herself or through any other person on his behalf, manufacture/process/imports/sells/or distributes any adulterant is liable-

  1.  to a penalty not exceeding two lakh rupees if such adulterant is not injurious to health
  2. to a penalty not exceeding ten lakh rupees if such adulterant is injurious to health, 
  3. In a proceeding under subsection (1), it is not considered as a defence if it is found that the accused was holding such adulterant on behalf of any other person.

Section 58: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person who violates or opposes the rules and regulations as stated under this act is liable to a penalty which may extend to two lakh rupees.

Section 59: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person himself/herself or through any other person on his behalf, manufacture/process/imports/sell/or distributes any article of food considered as unsafe is-

  1. punishable with imprisonment for a duration which may extend to six months and also with fine which may extend to one lakh rupees if such failure or contravention does not result in injury.
  2. punishable with imprisonment for a duration which may extend to one year and also with fine which may extend to three lakh rupees if such failure or contravention leads to an injury. 
  3. punishable with imprisonment for a duration which may extend to six years and also with fine which may extend to five lakh rupees if such failure or contravention leads to a grievous injury.
  4. punishable with imprisonment for a duration which shall not be less than seven years but may extend to imprisonment for life and also with fine which shall not be less than ten lakh rupees if such failure or contravention results in death.

Section 60: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person illegally or without the permission of the Food Safety Officer holds/switches/transfers/or damages any such food/vehicle/package/labelling/or advertising matter that has been confiscated is punishable with imprisonment for a duration which may extend to six months and also with fine which may extend to two lakh rupees.

Section 61: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person gives in the wrong/misleading/or false information as required by under this act is punishable with imprisonment for a duration which may extend to three months and also with fine which may extend to two lakh rupees.

Section 62: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person tries to or simply does threaten/excuse/resist/obstruct/intimidate/or assault the Food Safety Officer during his checks or hours of exercising inspection is punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months and also with fine which may extend to one lakh rupees.

Section 63: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person or food business operator himself/herself/or by the help of other people on behalf of them who is required to obtain license, manufacturers, sells, stores or distributes or imports any article of food without licence, is punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months and also with a fine which may extend to five lakh rupees.

Section 64: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person is found guilty as per the law under the act is again commits and is convicted of the same is liable to-

  1. his license being cancelled
  2. an additional fine daily which may extend up to one lakh rupees, where the offence is a continuing one
  3. twice the punishment, which might have been imposed on a first conviction, subject to the punishment being maximum provided for the same offence

Section 65:  Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person himself/herself or through any other person on his behalf, manufacture/process/imports/sell/or distributes any article of food inducing injury to the consumer or to his death, shall be lawful for the Adjudicating Officer or as the case may be, the court to direct him to pay compensation to the victim or the legal representative of the victim, a sum-

  1. not exceeding three lakh rupees in case of grievous injury
  2. not less than five lakh rupees in case of death
  3. not exceeding one lakh rupees, in all other cases of injury

Provided that the compensation is processed under the six months from the date of occurrence of the incident and as early as possible.

Provided further, if the case reaches the death, an interim relief shall be paid to the next of the kin within thirty days of the incident.

Section 66:  Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if a company has been committed to an offence under this act, then every person who was in charge of the company when the offence was committed is held responsible and deemed guilty of the offence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

Section 67: Under chapter 9 of the Food safety and standards act, 2006, if any person who imports any article of food which is in contravention of the provisions of this Act, rules and regulations made thereunder, shall, in addition to any penalty to which he may be liable under the provisions of the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act, 1992 (22 of 1992) and the Customs Act, 1962 (52 of 1962) be also liable under this Act and shall be proceeded against accordingly. Any such article of food shall be destroyed or returned to the importer if permitted by the competent authority under the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act, 1992 (22 of 1992) of the Customs Act, 1962 (52 of 1962), or any other Act, as the case may be.