Serious concerns with regard to FSSAI Order mandating lab testing of all food products half-yearly and uploading of the same

Date: June 9th 2023


The Chairperson

Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)

FDA Bhawan, Kotla, New Delhi.

The Chief Executive Officer,

Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)

FDA Bhawan, Kotla, New Delhi.

Dear Sirs,

Sub: An Order from FSSAI mandating 6-monthly lab testing reports of all foods and uploading of the same – reg.

Greetings! We are a group of civil society members who are working on sustainable and safe food systems, working with consumers as well as producers, including with farmers in shifting them towards an agro-ecological paradigm of production. 

We write to you to express our serious concerns with regard to an Order dated 13th January 2023, of the Regulatory Compliance Division (File No. 15(31)2020/FoSCoS/RCD/FSSAIpt-I-Part (1)). Through this Order, the FSSAI is mandating compulsory testing for all products endorsed on a FSSAI license, every six months in a financial year, and uploading of the same through FoSCoS. Reference is being cited as Conditions of License Number 12 (Annexure 3) of Schedule 2 of Food Safety and Standards (Licensing and Registration of Food Businesses) Regulations 2011. Annexure-3 incidentally is “conditions of license”.

On behalf of small manufacturers, re-packers and re-labellers, we have the following points to state:

  1. India’s food safety regulatory regime runs on the premise that small FBOs with an annual turnover of less than 12 lakh rupees are likely to cause lesser risk in any eventuality and therefore, requires them to only register with the regulator, whereas businesses above 12 lakhs’ turnover are required to obtain licenses to operate. Small operators are also defined in terms of production capacity with a ceiling of 100 liters or kilos per day, of food products. For licenses, once again, a state or central license comes into play, depending on another turnover band – 12 lakhs to 20 crores of annual turnover requires a state license and above that, a central license. Medium and Large enterprises with licenses have to necessarily print their FSSAI license number on the food products’ packaging. While Annexure-3 of Schedule 2 regarding registration and licensing is pertaining to “Conditions of License”, this January 2023 Order is appearing to cover all operators. Further, Annexure-3 cannot be applied to “registered FBOs” because the very rationale for this regulatory regime will be lost. 
  1. The same rationale as above should logically be maintained when it comes to those FBOs which are manufacturers (Section 3 (1)(zd) of the Act), repackers and relabellers of foods and the above Order (of 13th January 2023) cannot be uniformly applied to all FBOs who are manufacturers, repackers and re-labellers.
  1. Importantly, the entire regulatory regime in its statutory schema, is supposed to ensure food safety by way of the registration and licensing mechanisms, by the laying down of standards and by ensuring compliance to the same by the Food Safety Officer drawing samples and sending it to the Food Analyst for analysis (Section 38). In addition, the Indian statute also has provisions for the purchaser to get food analysed (Section 40) and get a refund of the fees paid to the Food Analyst if contraventions are found. When the regulatory apparatus has both these mechanisms apart from routine entry and inspection processes where Food Safety Officers and Food Analysts are already at work, why is the responsibility of food testing being thrust upon manufacturers themselves? What about the conflict of interest involved in this process? More importantly, what about the costs involved and who will reimburse the FBOs and how – for each product, it will cost in the range of Rs. 5000/- to Rs. 19500/-, and therefore, at least Rs. 10,000/- for annual testing of the product two times a year and many businesses deal with at least 15-20 products (for products like honey, it will cost at least Rs. 30,000/- per test and for heavy metals testing, private labs are charging Rs. 13000/- or so per product)? Additionally, does India have the lab testing facilities for lakhs and lakhs of samples to be continuously tested for all the parameters that FSSAI is laying down? The burden on even a licensed FBO who is a manufacturer with an annual turnover of, let us say, 15 lakh rupees can be easily understood. Worse, a penalty of Rs.100/- per day is being threatened if reports are uploaded beyond the stated deadline. 
  1. What is the scientific basis of risk management behind getting all products tested on a six-monthly basis, irrespective of the scale of market or shelf life or other considerations?

All in all, this Order from FSSAI seems to have many adverse economic implications for the livelihoods of small as well as medium enterprises of food manufacturing, apart from creating an extremely onerous online mechanism and these will work against many FBOs. It is also without any scientific basis and a circumventing of the mandate of FSSAI apparatus itself.

This is just a way of killing most FBOs in the country, paving the way for big brand food industry to take over. FSSAI’s regulations in any case favor such brands and not small FBOs, as was seen in the past too. We collectively urge you to please withdraw the said Order immediately and rely on FSSAI’s inspection, sampling and testing mechanisms for ensuring food safety. 


1. Kavitha Kuruganti, Alliance for Sustainable and Holistic Agriculture, Bangalore, Karnataka  

2. Babuji Janakaran, Farmer, Tamil Nadu

3. Sanjeev Sharma, Director Marketing, Rural Livelihood Development, International Relations, Kheti Virasat Mission, Punjab

4. Rajeev Kumar Kohli, Swadeshi Haat Gurdaspur, Ravidas Chowk, Jail Road, Gurdaspur, Punjab

5. Ananthoo, Safe Food Alliance, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

6. Gopi Deva, Organic Farmers’ Market, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

7. Seethalakshmi, Vizhuthugal, Tamil Nadu

8. Balaji sankar, Thalaanmai Malargirathu, Tamil Nadu

9. Mathew John, Last Forest Enterprises, Kotagiri, Tamil Nadu

10. Rohit Jain, Banyan Roots, Udaipur, Rajasthan.

11. Usha S, Save Our Rice Network, Trivandrum, Kerala

12. Valam Organics, Tamil Nadu

13. Manas Arvind, Gurgaon Organic Farmers Market, Gurgaon, Haryana

14. Tomy Mathew, Elements Homestead products Pvt Ltd, Kozhikode, Kerala.

15. A.K John, Fair Trade Alliance Kerala, Kannur, Kerala

16. Rajesh Krishnan, C.E.O, Thirunelly Agri Producer Company Limited, Wayanad, Kerala

17. Turanjoy Biswas, Banas Dairy (Amul) Plant, Faridabad, Haryana

18. Raja Sankar, Sriram Foods, Coimbatore Tamil Nadu

19. Kedareswar Chaudhury, Darbar Sahitya Sansada, Bhubaneswar, Odisha

20. Uma Shankari, Farmer, Citizen of India, Andhra Pradesh

21. Aishwarya J, Research Scholar, IIT Madras, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

22. M N Dinesh Kumar, Earth 360 Eco Ventures Pvt Ltd, Kadiri, Andhra Pradesh

23. Dr Soma KP, Independent Researcher, New Delhi

24. R Selvam, Tamil Nadu Organic Farmers Federation, Erode, Tamil Nadu

25. Baskar Manimegalai, Jeevakaa Centre for Peace and Happiness, Tamil Nadu

26. Geeta Oza, Raskum Mahila Producer Co. Ltd, Ahmedabad, Gujarat

27. Sheelu Francis, Women’s Collective, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

28. Ramasubramanian, Samanvaya Social Ventures Pvt Ltd, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

29. Aruna Rodrigues, Sunray Harvesters, Mhow, Madhya Pradesh

30. Anita Paul, Mountain High Grassroots Development Consulting, New Delhi

31. Prof Rajinder Chaudhary, Former Professor of Economics, MD University; Advisor, Kudarti Kheti Abhiyan, Rohtak, Haryana

32. Gargie Mangulkar, Pune, Maharashtra

33. Sreedevi L, Anantha Naturals, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu

34. Rahul Pabreja, TFs Organic Choices Pvt Ltd, Mumbai, Maharashtra

35. Padam Kumar Jain, Prem Samriddhi Foundation, Bundi, Rajasthan

36. Ruth Chattopadhyay, Paushtik Life, Kolkata, West Bengal

37. Dr Chhaya Datar, MAKAAM Maharashtra, Mumbai, Maharashtra

38. Rayson, Rayson Organic Farm Products, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu

39. Sameer Saxena, Head QA & NPD, Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Ltd, Anand, Gujarat

40. Dr Arun Gupta, Alliance Against Conflicts of Interest, Delhi

41. Dr Basavi Kiro, Latifolia Enterprises, Ranchi, Jharkhand

42. Harish Panwar, Beej Swaraj Abhiyan, Madhya Pradesh

43. H B Pandya (General Manager), Shree Bhavnagar District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd Sarvottam Dairy, Sihor, Gujarat

44. Sagar Bande, QAO, Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd, Durg, Chhattisgarh

45. Nareshkumar C Shah, Incharge (Quality Assurance), AmulFed Dairy, Bhat, Gandhinagar, Gujarat

46. Sofiqul Akunjee, QA Head, Amrit Fresh Pvt Ltd, Narasinghapur, Barasat, West Bengal

47. Shashikant Kumar, QAO, Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation, Ballia Dairy, Uttar Pradesh

48. Kashyap Chaudhari (QA Head), Banaskantha District Cooperative Milk Producer Union Ltd, Palanpur, Gujarat

49. Anish Nandan, Plant Incharge BBI, M/s Blueberry Industry, Chandrapur, Guwahati, Assam

50. Piyush Patel, QA Banasdairy Lucknow, Banaskantha District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh

51. Pragati Ghanghaniya, Sudama Dairy, Porbandar, Gujarat

52. Shyam Lal (Plant Manager), Sekhri Milk Products, Batala, Punjab

53. Balwan Singh, Sursagar Dairy, Wadhwan, Surendranagar, Gujarat

54. Mehebub Alam, Organic Dairy Foods (India), Godardihi, West Bengal

55. Vasudhara Dairy E23 Boisar, Valsad District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Boisar, Maharashtra

56. Keshav Jhawar, Uttar Banga Dairy Pvt Ltd, Sardarpara, Jalpaiguri, West Bengal

57. Bijay Pratap Sinha, Naturals Dairy Pvt Ltd, Patna, Bihar

58. Chintan Desai, Ahmedabad District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Ahmedabad, Gujarat

59. Ashish Gupta, QA In-Charge, JKMPCL, Jammu, J&K

60. Manthan Patel (QA), Amreli District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Amreli, Gujarat

61. Arindam Saha, KDCMPUL, West Bengal

62. Debraj Basu (QA Head), Dollon’s Food Products Pvt Ltd, Kolkata

63. Shubham Jain, Goga Foods Ltd, Khekra, Baghpat, Uttar Pradesh

64. Suman Ghosh (AMUL QA), KDCMPUL, Kolkata, West Bengal

65. Dr Kapil Gupta, AM(QA), Amul Dairy, Pune, Maharashtra

66. Chitresh Singh (MD), AM Enterprises, Modinagar, Uttar Pradesh

67. Jignesh K Patel (In Charge QA), Sabarkantha District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Himatnagar, Gujarat

68. Vivekananda Sarkar, QAO-GCMMF Ltd, Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation, Siliguri, West Bengal

69. Rohan Singh (MD), Maniyarpur Dairy Pvt Ltd, Karauta, Patna, Bihar

70. Prittesh Deshmukh, Sumul Dairy, Lahe, A Unit of Surat-Tapi DCMPU, Lahe, Maharashtra

71. SL Modi, Dudhmotisagar Dairy, Dharuhera, Rewari, Haryana

72. Harshad I Oza (QA Head), Vidya Dairy, Anand, Gujarat

73. Manoj Sana (Plant-Incharge), Meghna Farm Products, South 24 Paraganas, West Bengal

74. Joydev Majee (QA Head), India Dairy Products Ltd, Chanditala, West Bengal

75. Santosh Chandrakar, QA Head, BEC Foods, Durg (Third party Amul), Durg, Chhattisgarh

76. Om Prakash, QA Head, Onest Milk and Foods Ltd, Kota, Rajasthan

77. Jitendra Singh (Head-QA), Gavya Milk Specialities Pvt Ltd (Amul Third Party Plant), Bathinda, Punjab

78. Dhirajsinh Rathod, In Charge QA, Gandhinagar District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd, Madhur Dairy, Gandhinagar, Gujarat

79. Sardan Ali Khan, In-Charge (QA), Dharampal Satyapal Limited, Udaipur, Rajasthan

80. Akash Deep Saini (Jr Quality Executive), Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh

81. Rajendraprasad Gupta, Surat Tapi District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd (Sumul Dairy), Surat, Gujarat

82. Harishkumar Gupta, QA Head, Valsad District CMPU Ltd, Alipur, Navsari, Gujarat

83. Gokulakrishnan SS, Kaira District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd, Amul Dairy, Anand, Gujarat

84. Nikhil Tyagi, Surat-Tapi District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd (Sumul Dairy), Navi Pardi, Surat, Gujarat

85. Rajesh Verma, Sumul Food Factory (a Unit of Surat-Tapi District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd (Sumul Dairy), Chalthan, Surat, Gujarat

86. Lokesh Kulshrestha, Sr Manager (QA), Mehsana District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd, Mehsana, Gujarat

87. YP Singh (Quality Control Manager), BK Anand Foods Pvt Ltd, Murthal, Sonipat, Haryana

88. Yogesh Prajapati (QA Head Ballia), Banaskantha District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd, Ballia, Uttar Pradesh

89. Partha Roy, GM, Uttarbanga Dairy Pvt Ltd, Jalpaiguri, West Bengal

90. Sandeep P Yeole, Valsad District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Vasudhara Dairy, Nagpur, Maharashtra

91. Pritesh Deshmukh, Sumul Dairy Lahe Plant (A Unit of Surat-Tapi District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd (Sumul Dairy), Lahe, Maharashtra

92. Sameer Saxena, Head (QA&NPD), Mehak Ayaz (Quality Incharge), JKMPCL, Srinagar

93. Ankita Khan (QA Head), Meghna Farm Products, South 24 Paraganas, West Bengal

94. Rani Thorat, Milky Fresh Foods Pvt Ltd, Pune, Maharashtra

95. IV Thapliyal, General Manager Plant, Gopaljee Healthy Products Pvt Ltd, Rudrapur, Uttarakhand

96. Sandeep Kherde, Kaira District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd (Amul Dairy), Anand, Gujarat

97. P Ravitha, DGM (Q.C.), Nalgonda Rangareddy Milk Producers Mutually Aided Cooperative Union Ltd, Hayatnagar, Hyderabad, Telangana

98. Madhumilan Gupta, Narmada Milk and Milk Products, Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh

99. Manohar Lal Gupta, Narmada Amrit Food Pvt Ltd, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh

100. Jayesh K Raiyani (QA Head), Shree Morbi District Women’s Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Morbi, Gujarat

101. Umarkhed Milk Chilling Centre, Valsad District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Gram Panchayat Soiet, Krushnapur Phata Dhanki Tq, Umarkhed, Yavatmal, Maharashtra

102. Praveen Makwana, Banaskantha District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Dholpur, Rajasthan

103. Kanav Arora, PRS Milk Products Pvt Ltd, Fatehgarh Sahib, Punjab

104. Anirban Nath, India Dairy Products Ltd, Kolkata, West Bengal

105. Anitha Sama, Anitha Dairy Products, Hyderabad, Telangana

106. Mahesh Kumar, Gavya Milk Specialities Pvt Ltd, Manoharpur, Jaipur, Rajasthan

107. Vinay Gupta (General Manager), Shri Vrindavan Dairies, Jaipur, Rajasthan

108. Jignesh Dave, Savaj Dairy, Junagadh, Gujarat

109. Madhav Raut, Sri Sri Milk and Food Products Shikrapur, Pune, Maharashtra

110. VB Pawar, Dairy Manager, Valsad District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Vasudhara Dairy Dhule Unit, Dhule, Maharashtra

111. Lal Dhari Singh (QCM), Bhagirath Dairy Pvt Ltd, Jodhpur, Rajasthan

112. Aruna N Kher, Baroda District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd, Vadodara, Gujarat

113. Milan Chaudhary, Sabar Dairy, Rohtak, Haryana

114. Dinesh Kumar, Bhagirath Dairy, Kuchaman City, Rajasthan

115. Amit Mache, Amul Dairy, Gujarat

116. Ajesh Kumar, Amul Dairy, Punjab

117. Rajesh B Sukhwal, The Panchmahal District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Godhra, Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh

118. Pankita Solanki, Valsad District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Motapondha, Gujarat

119. Seemarani Choudhary, Mehsana District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Dudhmansagar Dairy, Maneswar, Gurgaon, Haryana

120. Sanjay Pandey GM (QA), Banaskantha District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Banas Dairy, Palanpur, Gujarat

121. Travadi Chirantan J, Baroda District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Ltd (Sugam Unit), Baroda Dairy, Baroda, Gujarat

122. M H Shaikh, Head (QA), The Bharuch District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Bharuch, Gujarat

123. Mohan Choudhary, Banad Dairy, Sanadar, Gujarat

124. Narendra Sharma (General Manager-Plant), Rajkot District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Rajkot, Gujarat

125. Chalavadi Bala Krishna, Mewar Foods Pvt Ltd, Kaladera, Chomu, Jaipur, Rajasthan

126. Dave Utkal, Sumul Dairy, Goa

127. Kirit G Patel, Head-QC, Panchmahal District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Godhra, Gujarat

128. M Saritha, The Krishna District Milk Producers Mutually Aided Cooperative Union, Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh

129. Anant Mishra (General Manager), GS Manglani Foods n Fry Yums Pvt Ltd, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh

130.Jasu N Patel, Banaskantha District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Gujarat

131.Dhaval Purohit, Ganpati Milk Products Pvt Ltd, Jamshedpur, Jharkhand

132.Swetang K Shrimali, Dy Manager (R&D and QA), Kaira District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Kheda Satellite Dairy, Khatraj, Gujarat

133. Sanjay, M/s Vasudhara Dairy Ice Cream Plant, Boisar, Palghar, Maharashtra

134. Swarna C, Mother Dairy, Bangalore, Karnataka

135. Vivek Kashyap, Asst Manager, Banaskantha District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Banas Oil Unit, Palanpur, Gujarat

136. Munireddy N, Karnataka Milk Federation, Bengaluru, Karnataka

137. BRM Raju, Supraja Dairy Pvt Ltd, Atchuthapuram, Andhra Pradesh

138. Shantan Vernekar, Shanti Foods Processing Industry, MIDC, Taloja, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra

139. Achal Jagrut, Mahagit Agro Pvt Ltd, Lambola, Shahada, Maharashtra

140. AK Rai (GM), MMX Foods Pvt Ltd, Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh

141. Swati Arun Ghatage, Ghatage Food and Milk Products Pvt Ltd, Jaysingpur, Maharashtra

142. Devendra Singh, Mehrotra Consumer Products Pvt Ltd, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh

143. Dipak Maruti Patil, Quality Control Manager, Maharashtra

144. Vijay Shette, Panchmahal DCMPU, Taloja, New Mumbai, Maharashtra

145. Digpal Singh, Kutch District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd “Sarhad Dairy”, Kutch, Gujarat

146. Bhagwat,Kaira District Cooperative Milk Producers Union Ltd, Puttur, Andhra Pradesh

147. Rajendra Prasad Periketi, Kaira District Cooperative Milk Producers Limited, Madanapalle, Andhra Pradesh

148. Rajesh Kumar L, Prananda Private Limited, Nuzvid, Andhra Pradesh

149. Sudheer Kumar Mishra, Banaskantha District Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union, Ballia, Uttar Pradesh      

150. Rahul Sharma, “Graintastic”, Chandigarh

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