FSSAI issues Guidance Document for implementation of Good Manufacturing Practices and Good Hygiene Practices in the spices industry

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (“FSSAI”) has issued a Guidance Document for the purpose of implementing Good Manufacturing Practices (“GMP”) and Good Hygiene Practices (“GHP”) in the Spices Industry. This guidance document has been developed to provide the requirements which are to be ensured from the time of post harvesting, drying and storage of whole spices to grinding, blending, storage, packaging and transportation of spices.

The document has been divided into five main sections:

  1. The first section gives an overview of the spices processing industry in India.
  1. The second section includes a range of programs / procedures that are essential for the overall management of food safety issues and provide the basic environmental and operating conditions for a manufacturing facility. The section contains guidance for implementation of good manufacturing practices and good hygiene practices as outlined in Part II of Schedule 4 of Food Safety & Standard (Licensing & Registration of Food Businesses) Regulation, 2011, which specifies the General Requirements on Hygienic and Sanitary Practices to be followed by all Food Business Operators applying for License and are required to be followed at each step in the supply chain, to ensure food safety.
  1. The third section of this document is recommendatory in nature and provides the basic knowledge and criteria for implementation of Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (“HACCP”) system by the food businesses. This section describes the possible hazards that could occur during processing of spices. It includes the detailed manufacturing process with a process flow chart and relevance of main processing steps & two tables: Hazard Analysis and HACCP Plans. Tables of Hazard Analysis are expected to help the industry to identify the food safety risks related to each processing step as well as the Critical Control Points (“CCP”), recommended corrective actions and other related information. The sample HACCP Plans could be used as reference by the industry and modified or altered based on their operations.
  1. The fourth section provides an inspection checklist for food business operator to audit their facility & operations. The Food Business Operators (“FBO”) can evaluate themselves based on the indicative scoring. It also lists down the types of Adulterants in spices.
  1. The last section gives important templates and forms which will be required by FBOs to maintain the records. This includes mandatory forms as prescribed by FSSAI & few templates for maintaining records of processes critical for food safety.

It is also pertinent to mention here that the FSSAI states that this guidance document does not intend to replace any legal provision of Food Safety & Standard Act, 2006.

Source: Food Safety and Standards Authority of India

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