The University Grants Commission (UGC) has directed the Vice-chancellors of all the universities to ensure that the canteen/mess operators at the campuses of the universities and affiliated colleges must be licensed under the Food Safety and Standards (FSS) Act, 2006. The Act states that “no individual should initiate any food business unless he/she possess a valid license”.
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Jaspal S Sandhu pointed that most of the canteens/ mess in various educational institutions recognized by UGC do not have a license. Hence, the VCs should take steps for making license mandatory for running the canteens/ mess on their campuses and affiliated colleges. Sadhu has requested all the varsities to follow the FSS Act, 2006. He also explained that strict action would be taken against those canteens/ mess that fail to obtain a valid license.
He also revealed that FSS Authority of India would conduct instruction exercises for food handlers employed in various universities and affiliated colleges. The primary objective of FSS is to ensure that better quality of food is being served to students. It would also provide training to food handlers to provide safe and wholesome food to the students. FSS Authority of India (FSSAI) also directed the VCs to take the matter as a top priority.
The FSS Act 2006 is a legal framework which has been constituted for regulating, manufacturing, storage, distribution, sale of food and ensure safety. Licensing and Registration of Food Business fall under Regulation 2.1.2 of the Food Safety and Standards (FSS) Regulations, 2011.