The Government Analyst- Food and Drug Department has announced that manufacturers, importers and distributors of food are required to comply with the requirements for the registration before the April 30, 2019.
The requirements for registration includes the submission of annual application to obtain “license to manufacture” and/ or ‘permit to import” for the current year.
For water filling premises, at least one person from the entity must be certified as a water operator from any recognized institute providing such training.
In addition, the Food and Drug Department stated that premises must be suitable for the processing, packaging, distribution and storage of regulated articles.
Also, there must be procedures in place for proper cleaning and sanitation of packaging facilities, materials and equipment that is in direct contact with the product. A release from the department also stated that packaging must be sealed and labeled and include expiry and manufacturing dates, lot and/or batch number.
Labels of imported articles must be in English and the products have at least 75% shelf life at the port of entry.
Further, one of the requirements also stated the original certificates must be submitted to the Department before Import License Applications can be improved and Customs Entries can be released.
“Original certificates are Free Sale or Health Certificates issued by the relevant regulatory authority that regulates the product and a certificate of analysis from any competent laboratory from the country of origin as mandated by the Food & Drug Act Part 1 Section 3. Original Certificates are expected to bear both the seal and stamp with the signatory of the regulatory authority from the Country of origin”.
Finally, samples of the packaging must be submitted by an inspector or the processing entity for analysis. “If and when any sample is not in compliance, the entity would be required to cease operations and be subjected to inspection(s) before resumption of operations”, the FDD stated.
According to the Food and Drug Act Section 8 “any person who manufactures, prepares, preserves, packages or stores for sale any food under insanitary conditions’ and Section 5 “any person who sells an article of food that was manufactured, prepared, preserved, packaged or stored under insanitary conditions”, is guilty of an offence.
To date, the Department has issued twenty eight (28) Permits to Import Food and thirty four (34) Licenses/ Permits to manufacture/ Repackage Food.