Before beginning the food business or whenever the products have to be floated in the market, it is important to get a detail evaluation of the product to know if it needs a product approval.
Here is a checklist that will reveal the criteria for product approval.
- If the product is standard or non-standard: A standard product is a product that is under the permissible guidelines of Food Safety and Standards Authority of India such that the percentage of ingredients of these products is mentioned under the rules and regulations.
- If the products have health claims: Product approval is required if the product claims health benefits and the products shall be tested in a NABL- accredited laboratory.
- If the products is a proprietary product: Product approval is required if the food business operator is claiming copyright or requires parenting of the product.
- The Dietary Reference Intake System introduces the RDA, and for certain vitamins, RDA is just an optimal amount.
- If the format of the product is under the permissible limits product approval will be required.
- Product approval is required if the products have a mixture of two or more products that are used as ingredients to manufacture a new product.
- With the advent of digital India technologies, applying for product approval is now easy and requires the application and other details and documents to be submitted online.
The process of product approval by Food Safety and Standards Authority of India is detailed below:
- The first step to get products approval is to go to the FSSAI website and go to the option of ‘user registration.’ One will get a form to register.
- The license number and contact details have to be filled and submitted. The username and the password are received on the registered email id. This username and password shall be used to do anything on the website.
- After putting in the login credential, the next is to check the eligibility on the dashboard.
- The applicant shall file a new application and submit the details regarding the products, its ingredients, and additives.
- The website will immediately address if the product is within the FSS approved products, and if the applicant is eligible or not.
- Once the form is filed, a soft copy of the documents has to be uploaded in a jpg or a pdf format. There is also a checklist available that can be checked while filling the form to ensure that if everything required in the application is complete.
- Before the applicant proceeds to make the payment, one should save a copy of the application form and review the summary. Any mistakes made here can be rectified.
- After the application is filled, the applicant shall proceed to make payment for a prescribed fee that is charged by the authority for product approval.
- The payments have to be made online, and only then an acknowledgment receipt is received.
- After the successful filing of an application, all the relevant details and documents attached to it shall be scrutinized by FSSAI.
- The application submitted can either be accepted or rejected. If accepted, FSSAI shall issue a No Objection Certificate, Product Approval Certificate which shall be received by email.
Numerous steps are involved as the rules and regulations are very stringent. It is best to acquire professional help that has relevant experience and are acquainted with FSSAI rules and regulations to seek product approval.