The 4th State Food Safety Index for the year 2021-2022 was published by FSSAI on 06.06.2022. Tamil Nadu with 82 points has secured the first position.
Andhra Pradesh with 26 stands last, 17th among the large states. Goa stands first among the smaller states and Jammu and Kashmir among the Union Territories.
Ranking of States/UTs:
i. Among the Large States: Tamil Naduis the top-ranking state, followed by Gujarat and Maharashtra.
ii. Among the Small States: Goa is the top-ranking state followed by Manipur and Sikkim.
iii. Among UTs: Jammu & Kashmir is the top-ranking UT, followed by Delhi and Chandigarh.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, FSSAI has developed State Food Safety Index to measure the performance of states on various parameters of Food Safety. This index is based on performance of State/ UT on five significant parameters, namely, Human Resources and Institutional Data, Compliance, Food Testing – Infrastructure and Surveillance, Training & Capacity Building and Consumer Empowerment. The Index is a dynamic quantitative and qualitative benchmarking model that provides an objective framework for evaluating food safety across all States/UTs.
The Food Safety Index reflects the overall performance of the States/ UTs on various parameters of food safety. These food safety parameters are broadly classified under following 5 significant factors assigned with separate weightage of marks.
a) Human Resources and Institutional Data (with 20% weightage):The objective is to check availability of strong culture and ecosystem of enforcement commensurate with the size and population of the State/UT as well as participation of other departments and stakeholders in food safety activity at State and district levels.This parameter measures the availability of human resources like number of Food Safety Officers, Designated Officers, facility of adjudications and appellate tribunals, functioning of State/ District level Steering Committees, pendency of cases and their monitoring and participationin Central Advisory Committee meetings of the Food Authority.
b) Compliance (with 30% weightage):This is the most important parameter and measures overall coverage of food businesses in licensing & registration commensurate with size and population of the State/UTs, special drives and camps organized, yearly increase, promptness and effectiveness in issue of state licenses/ registrations. Also, this parameter considers the inspections carried out for high risk food businesses through FoSCoRISand the number of samples drawn for testing. Promptness in attending to the consumer grievances and availability of help desk and web portals are also examined under this parameter.
c) Food Testing- Infrastructure and Surveillance (with 20% weightage):This parameter measures availability of adequate testing infrastructure with trained manpower in the States/ UTs for testing food samples. The States/ UTs with NABL accredited labs and adequate manpower in the labs score more in this parameter. The availability and effective utilization of Mobile Food Testing Labs and registration and utilization of InFoLNet (Indian Food LaboratoriesNetwork) are also examined under this parameter.
d) Training and Capacity Building (with 10% weightage):This parameter focuses on training and capacity building of regulatory staff (Dos and FSOs), number of trainings held under FoSTaC (Food Safety Training and Certification) and the availability of trained Food Safety Supervisors in food businesses across the State/UT.
e) Consumer Empowerment (with 20% weightage):This parameter measures the performance of States/ UTs in various consumer empowering initiatives of FSSAI like participation in Food Fortification, Eat Right Campus, BHOG (Blissful Hygienic Offering to God), Hygiene Rating of Restaurants, Clean Street Food Hubs, etc. Further, action taken for coverage of food fortification in open market, government safety net programmes and availability of fortified products in all districts are taken into consideration. State initiated activities for creating consumer awareness are also considered.