In India, Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 (FSSAI) have been enacted for regulating food business operators all over India. FSSAI oversees that the food being supplied in the country must be safe and hygienic for consumption.
Enacting law, providing licence and registration, calling for information all these steps will went into vain if the hygiene is not maintained at the premises where food businesses are operated.
To ensure this safety, a programme was launched by FSSAI in July 2017 i.e. Food safety Training & Certificate (FosTaC). This programme intends to create a pool of food safety supervisor who will be trained to assure hygiene and manufacturing process as prescribed under the FSSAI regulations. It will also spread awareness regarding food safety among people.
Objective of FosTac
- To create improved environment which will lead to self compliance of FSSAI regulation;
- To bring behavioural change towards food safety in India;
- To bring food safety culture in India.
As per section 16(3) of FSS Act 2006, FSSAI has to:
“provide, whether within or outside their area, training programmes in food safety and standards for persons who are or intend to become involved in food businesses, whether as food business operators or employees or otherwise”
Pursuant to this power, FSSAI has mandated that all food business having central or state license must have at least one trained and certified Food Safety Supervisor under FoSTaC for every 25 food handlers in each premise.
These supervisors should carry periodic onsite training of all food handlers, at least on quarterly basis and also maintain the record.
Food handlers in all petty business that are registered should be trained and certified.
Who are Food Safety Supervisor (FSS)?
FSS is a person who is trained to recognise and prevent food related risk in food business, holds valid FSS certificate under FosTac programme. FSS shall be able to train and supervise food handlers.
Who is Food Handler?
Food handler is any person who directly handles packaged or unpackaged food, food equipment, utensils or food contact surfaces and are expected to food hygiene requirement.
Below given entities would be training partners
- Big food businesses (central licensee and big state licensee)
- Academic and vocational institutions
- Training partners approved National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), Sector Skill Councils (SSCs) and State Development Missions.
- Training agencies approved under other government schemes
- Industry association , scientific and technology association
- Civil society organisation
Below given training programme are designed under fostac
Who can be Trainee?
- Any person involved in food business or intend to get into food business may get training
- Any Students who have completed/pursuing post-graduation in food science/nutrition/hospitality or other allied fields.
- Any consumer who is willing to get knowledge of food safety and hygiene.
Mode of Course
FosTac courses are conducted through classrooms and online facility was not available , however during current pandemic online class has been arranged by FosTac.
To support the initiative of Government to enhance the food safety in India and to build a culture of safe and secure food, it is advisable for all Food business operators to enrol and complete their training with FosTac.