13 Jan 2020

FSSAI’s Hygiene Rating Scheme

Source: PIB & FSSAI

FSSAI’s Hygiene Rating Scheme is a user-driven, technology-enabled scheme applicable to food businesses supplying food directly to consumers either on or off the premises. Food businesses are rated on the basis of food hygiene and safety conditions found at the time of inspection and are given a score between (five to one) as per their hygiene and food safety compliance. This scheme has been recently introduced for the foodservice sector such as hotels & restaurants, cafeterias, etc.

Purpose of the scheme

  • Allow consumers to make an informed food choice about where to eat and inculcate the right eating habits.
  • Encourage food businesses to adopt high hygiene standards and to sustain them so as to showcase the same to their consumers.

What is the Food Hygiene Rating?

  • FSSAI Food Hygiene Rating Scheme is an online, transparent scoring and rating process that aims to allow consumers to make informed choices about the places where they eat out & through these choices, encourage businesses to improve their hygiene standards & thus reduce the incidence of food-borne illness. 
  • This Hygiene rating concept is new in India but has parallels in many countries across the globe. Every country has its own terminologies which explains the idea of ensuring safe and hygienic food in all catering businesses to the general public. 

Food hygiene rating in other countries

Some of the well-known schemes already in place are; 

  • Food Hygiene Rating Scheme(FHRS) in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland
  • Scores on Doors a star rating scheme in Australia, etc.

The rating system will be implemented in 2 parts:

  1. Hygiene ratings – which will score and rate the FBO on meeting basic requirements ensuring good hygiene practices for all processes including handling raw material, maintaining clean premises, storing food, etc.
  2. Hygiene ratings + (Also known as “Responsible place to eat“) – Its compliance will enhance the FBO’s scope and responsibility towards providing safe and nutritious food to a larger community. They will be motivated to taking care of their employees, the underprivileged and also serving the customer beyond the mandatory, by making them aware of healthy choices and giving them access to such options.

Current Mandatory Requirements

  • Qualified FBOs need to have FSSAI License/ Registration and follow schedule 4 requirements. This aims to provide for adequate measures that are to be adopted to ensure that food being served to the consumers is of good quality and safe to eat.
  • Train all food handlers and appoint a certified Food Safety Supervisors. Access the FSS training portal “FOSTAC” to get more information.
  • Must have Food Safety Display Boards prominently displayed in the premises.
  • Get food samples tested periodically.