FSSAI License category you should apply for your food business

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FSSAI License category you should apply for your food business


Any person who is involved in food business in India has to mandatorily apply for an FSSAI license as per the FSSAI Regulation 2011. Depending on the type of business, the Government has several thresholds prescribed; crossing which, there is an absolute need to apply for the FSSAI License. The set thresholds are on the basis of turnover, production, installed capacity, star rating, vehicles possessed for food transport, etc. Irrespective of whether the individual is the owner of a commercial unit or a home-based food supplier, whether the mode is online or offline, the scope is very wide. It covers all food service providers which include hotels, restaurants or boarding houses, clubs serving food, canteens at commercial places and educational institutions, catering service providers, food vendors, persons dealing with organic products, etc.

Basic registration under FSSAI:

A basic FSSAI license has to be procured by individuals operating in the food space who have an annual turnover of up to INR 12 lakhs. All businesses in the food spectrum, whether manufacturers, retailers, storage and transporters, distributors will require this license, such as:

  • All manufacturers of food, including petty hawkers, vendors, street stall owners
  • A small-scale or cottage or other industry relating to food businesses with an annual turnover of up to INR 12 lakhs and whose:
  • The production capacity of food (other than milk and milk products and meat and meat products) does not exceed 100 kg/litres per day or
  • Procurement or handling and collection of milk is up to 500 litres of milk per day or
  • Slaughtering capacity is 2 large animals or 10 small animals or 50 poultry birds per day or less.


State and central license – What is the difference?

State and central permits are the two broad categories of FSSAI licensing. These licenses are more complex, detailed and extensive than the FSSAI Registration process. While registration can be obtained easily in a week by filling particulars of Form A, the licensing process is likely to take longer after Form B has been furnished.


Decoding the state license

For those businesses that have a turnover of more than INR 12 lakhs but less than 20 crores, a State License is required.

While each state is empowered to fix its own fee, in Delhi, the fee for obtaining a new license is as follows:


Manufacturer/Miller Fees(Rs/Year)
About 1MT per day Production Rs. 5000
10,001 to 50,000 LPD of milk or 501 to 2500 MT of milk solids per annum Rs. 5000
Below 1MT of production Rs. 3000
501 to 10,000 LPD of milk or 2.5MT to 500 MT of milk solids per annum Rs. 3000
Hotels upto 4 Star Rs. 5000
All food Service providers including restaurants/boarding houses,clubs,etc. serving food,Canteens (Schools,Colleges, Office, Institutions),Caterers,Banquet halls with food catering
arrangements, food vendors like dabbawallas & other food Business Operator
Rs. 2000

Source: https://foodlicensing.fssai.gov.in/indexSL_DL.aspx

The trigger limits for obtaining the State license for some of the popular businesses are as follows:

  • Dairy Production & chilling business: Up to 500 LPD of milk or 2500 MT of milk solids per year
  • Slaughtering units: 2-50 Large Animals, 10-150 Small Animals, 50-1000 Poultry birds
  • Meat processing: Up to 500 kg a day
  • Vegetable oil processing: Up to 2 MT a day and over INR 12 lacs annual turnover.
  • Cold storage capacity: Up to 1000 MT
  • Wholesale turnover of up to 30 crores
  • Retailer and distributor turnover of up to 20 crores
  • Restaurant turnover of up to 20 crores
  • Three-star hotels (below five stars) having turnover more than 12 lakhs.

Decoding the central license:

Businesses having a turnover above INR 20 crores should apply for a central license. This fee is capped at INR 7,500 per year for both new licenses as well as renewals. The license is issued for a maximum period of five years.

The trigger limits for obtaining the central license for some of the popular businesses are as follows:

  • All proprietary foods
  • All importers
  • Dairy production & chilling business: More than 50,000 litres of liquid milk or 2500 MT of milk solids per year
  • Slaughtering units: More than 50 large Animals, More than 150 small animals, More than 1000 poultry birds
  • Meat processing: More than 500 kg a day
  • Vegetable oil processing: More than 2 MT a day and over INR 12 lakhs annual turnover.
  • Cold storage capacity: More than 1000 MT
  • Wholesale turnover greater than 30 crores
  • Retailer and distributor turnover of greater than 20 crores
  • Restaurant turnover of more than 20 crores
  • Five star and above hotels
  • Food catering in defence
  • Food catering in units under the Central Government agencies like air, airport etc.
  • Food operators operating in more than one state

A detailed list of documents and forms required can be obtained by accessing the official FSSAI website at https://foodlicensing.fssai.gov.in/indexSL_DL.aspx and scrolling down to the bottom of the screen to Form B and documents required under the Central License and State License tabs, respectively.

Here’s a complete guide about starting a restaurant in India.

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