Drive to shut down eateries lacking food safety licence on Aug 1 and 2

Officials with the Food Safety Department conducting a raid at a restaurant on Tuesday, January 3, 2023. Screengrab: Manorama News

The food safety authorities in Kerala have announced an intensive ‘Operation Foscos Licence Drive 2023’ across the state on August 1 and 2 to identify food outlets functioning without a licence.

Foscos refers to 'Food Safety Compliance System' or a set of documents required to make the registration process easier. 

Eateries lacking a licence would be shut down and charged with fines. Legal measures also would be initiated against them, said the authorities.

Applications for licence could be submitted on the portal and the fee for an ordinary licence is Rs 2,000. “Eateries which don’t possess a licence will not be allowed to function until they obtain the document,” said officials.

Action will also be taken against food outlets not displaying their licence prominently in the establishments, said Food Safety authorities.

Special squads have been constituted for the drive and inspections will be carried out in all eateries.

The drive was announced after the authorities noticed that a large number of food outlets operated with only registration and not a licence.

Under Section 31 of the Food Safety & Standards Act 2006, all entrepreneurs dealing with food have to earn an FSSAI food safety licence. Even people who run wayside eateries have to obtain a licence if they employ workers.

Exempted categories
The following categories of entrepreneurs can function with registration alone: People selling food prepared by them; petty retailers; hackers selling items from handcarts and temporary traders.

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