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Need of Agricultural Products License in India

Agriculture is the root of any countries economic development. Agricultural are the key source for primary sector in India and it contributes a significant figure of GDP in India. India is one of the exporters in the world. FSSAI is the organization to legalise, authorize and certify agricultural food products in India.  

India has gone through many revolutions to grow in the agricultural field. Indian government has made special efforts to hike the production of Agricultural products and has made India one of the leading producers of food grain in international market. Import Export Code is the number that should be each and every exporter in India with Director General of Foreign trade.

Exporter should register with an appropriate export promotion agency by obtaining a registration certificate to get enjoy mutual benefits under the export-import policy.

Features of Agriculture License in India

  • All Exporter and Importer need to acquire IEC (Import Export Code) from Government.
  • Every exporter or importer needs to comply with the conditions of License.
  • Inform authorities with regard to every changes or modification in the activities
  • Financial assistance is extended to exporters

All the businesses which expect to do global trading of agricultural goods need to register with a local licensing authorise that gives them an Import Export Code (IEC) Code. Custom authorities won't allow freedom of products unless the merchant gets an Import Export Code (IEC) number from the territorial permitting expert. Executive General of Foreign exchange is the specialist that gives them an Import Export Code (IEC) number.

Indian government has built up a few bodies like APEDA, Spices Board and so on for improvement of agro enterprises and to control the timetable items for trades by settling of benchmarks and details for send out. To get advantages and concessions under the fare import approach, exporters should enlist with a suitable fare advancement office by acquiring an registration cum-participation declaration certificate. There are different enlistments which an element is required to acquire over the span of business, some of them are being talked about here. Notwithstanding, in view of the business exchanges a specific business may require different enlistments, you may please get in touch with us for consultancy on that.

Major agricultural goods are needed to experience quality control and pre-shipment reviews before trade under the Export (Quality Control and Inspection) Act, 1963. Be that as it may, items that have an ISI Certification Mark or Agmark don't should be investigated by any organization. All merchandise ought to be named, bundled, stuffed and set apart before send out.

Imports to India are represented by the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act 1992. Under this Act, imports of all products are free aside from the things directed by the strategy or some other law in constrain. The things managed by this arrangement is named denied list which can't be foreign made. For import of things that show up in the "Limited" show one have to secure an import License while the things that are counted in the canalized list are allowed to be transported in through canalizing Agencies. Every other item can be unreservedly foreign.

Import of agrarian item was a worry for the fabricates as there was no settled strategy for it. Presently we have import methodology for the greater part of the agrarian items, fisheries segment, agriculture, domesticated animals items. There are diverse offices/offices for advancement of businesses, settling of benchmarks and particulars identifying with the planned items for send out, enlistment of individuals, permitting, and so forth.

How to Import Food Products in India

Humans being have the ability to adapt and self-manage when facing physical, mental, psychological and social changes. Being healthy is one of the important aspects that people should focus on. Healthy foods are one of the no divisible parts of our health. Each one of us should follow safety measures to make ourselves healthy in our life full of convolution. Hence, there should be availability of safe and wholesome food for human consumption 

To ensure this Government of India regulates various departments and agencies to regulate the import of food products in India. Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) is one of the prime body which lays down the standards, regulate and control the import of food products in India. FSSAI has obtained some of the Standard Operating Procedures for clearance of imported food products. In case the import of the food products are not as per the FSSAI regulations and prescribed procedures the consignment will be rejected and will not be allowed to be traded in India.

An individual or an entity must be cognizant of the FSSAI regulations and procedure relating to the import of food product.

Requirement of License and Registration prior to import

  • Business firm should be either Company or LLP. It is more preferable to those are having the credible form of business having limited liability.
  • Firm should have proper indirect tax registration or VAT Registration with concerned authority for sale of products in India.
  • There is a necessity Importer Exporter Code (IE Code) issued by Director General of Foreign Trade.
  • Need of product approval in case of import of non-standardised products.

Delegation of Authority

Consignment should pass various stages for clearance and reach to the domestic market is

  • Custom Department should clear Application for Custom Clearance.
  • Application of NOC (No Objection Certificate) or Provisional NOC to Food Import clearance system (FICS) of FSSAI.
  • Scrutiny of documents by an Authorised officer of FSSAI or NOC.
  • Visual inspection of the consignment and sampling thereof by the Authorised officer of FSSAI.
  • Laboratory analysis of samples collected.
  • Issuance of NOC or Provisional NOC by Food Import clearance system (FICS) of FSSAI.
  • Finally, Custom clearance of the consignment.

Procedure of above stages to be followed

Custom Department should clear Application for Custom Clearance. When the shipment arrives in India the importer or CHA shall file an application for Clearance of shipment with Department of Customs. After it files the necessary documents for generation of Bill of Entry to receive an Examination order for the consignment. There will be generation of examination order by Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) system of Customs, requiring NOC from FSSAI.

Application of NOC (No Objection Certificate) or Provisional NOC to Food Import clearance system (FICS) of FSSAI.- After the bill has been generated of Bill of Entry and examination order shall make an application 

Preliminary documents required to make such an application is as under:

  • Import Export Code issued by DGFT
  • FSSAI Licence issued under FSSAI Act 2006
  • Bill of the Entry
  • Examination order is generated by Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) system of Customs
  • Product approval, if required

There is a need for preliminary documents apart from additional documents specific to the product are required to be submitted with Food Import clearance system (FICS) of FSSAI, e.g.

  • Sanitary Import Permit Issued by Department of Animal Husbandry if products is a livestock product
  • Import Permit issued by Ministry of Agriculture, Governments of India, if the product is a primary agriculture produce or horticultural produce
  • Certificate of origin issued at the place of manufacturing or processing etc. by Authorized Person or Agency of the food consignment.
  • Registration of import contracts for poppy seeds with Central Bureau of Narcotics;
  • Certificate of Origin shall contain information on Country of origin etc. if the consignor is from a different country;
  • Certificate of Analysis with composition certificate. In case of Wine & Whiskey Test certificate is required;
  • Phyto-Sanitary Certificate issued by the Plant Quarantine Department of Exporting Country in case of horticulture produce or primary agriculture with fumigation endorsement
  • End-use declaration.
  • List of transit country.
  • Pumping Guarantee Certificate in case of edible oil imported in bulk.
  • Stuffing list, Packing List.
  • Commercial invoice as mentioned in the Bill of Entry.
  • Temperature Chart or Report or Graph, if the food consignment trans-shipped under the Cold Chain Technologies (CCT) from the port of origin to the point of import.
  • Bill of lading as mentioned in the Bill of Entry for sea consignment.
  • Air Way Bill as mentioned in the Bill of Entry for air consignment
  • Declaration by an undertaking from the manufacturer that the representative sealed sample is from the same batch of the consignment in case of aseptic package;
  • Radio Activity Certificate, if irradiation is used;
  • In addition to the documents listed above, the importer/ CHA shall submit the documents filed with the Department ofCustoms at the time of export as well as copy of the rejection certificate, if any, along with reasons for it issued by the officials of importing country before its re-export where it is a case of re-import.
  • High Sea Sale Agreement;
  • Submission any other report (s) or documents (s) or undertaking (s) or Affidavit (s) as directed and as specified by the Authorized Officer of by the Food Authority from time to time

Scrutiny of documents by Authorised officer of FSSAI or any Authorised person from the department

Each and every document needs to be verified from the authorised officer of FSSAI. The documents should be submitted by the importer thereafter. In this process officer may ask for any clarification if required in the matter. In case the things are pending after due verification and scrutiny the documents are found to be in order the authorise officer raises a demand for the requisite fee as per number of samples applied for clearance.

Visual inspection of the consignment by the Authorised officer of FSSAI

Authorised officer shall inform the date and time of visual inspection of the consignment which shall be duly acknowledged by importer/CHA.This will on the deposit of demand of fee raised by the importer/ CHA. After the visual examination and  ensurance about the remaining balance shelf life the authorised officer shall draw two samples in the presence of importer or his representative and shall seal and label it.

Laboratory analysis of samples collected

According to the standards and parameters the samples shall be analysed by the laboratory as per the prescribed under Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 and regulations. The report shall be send to the officerwith a conclusion whether the product tested conforms to the standards and parameters prescribed under Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 and its regulations.

Issuance of No objection certificate

NOC will be issued on the basis of the laboratory report for its conformance or non-conformance standards and parameters prescribed under FSS act 2006 and regulations, NOC or NCC (Non Conformance Certificate) is generated.

Custom clearance of the consignment

Finally when No Objection Certificate (NOC) is issued by the FICS  of FSSAI is duly submitted by the authorised person to the Customs authorities with the Department of Customs the consignment is cleared for trade or use in India.

FSSAI License Registration Process

Food safety and standard of India (FSSAI) is an autonomous body consolidates statute related to food safety and regulation in India. FSSAI is controlled by Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India. This has been established under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006. Mainly FSSAI is responsible for protection and promotion of public health. It is headed by a non-executive Chairperson, appointed by the Central Government, either holding or has held the position of not below the rank of Secretary to the Government of India.

FSSAI License is compulsory for selling the standard food products. These types companies must obtain 14-digit registration or a license number printed on food packages. It is a permit required to operate a food related business and to ensure good quality of food in your business and benefits one from government actions on non-compliances.

Why should people obtain FSSAI license?

The consumer should be aware and alert about the quality of food they eat. People need to know what they are consuming. This is the number of diets and healthy eating food eating. Nowadays people have started to take the food safety standard seriously.

FSSAI Logo can be used in your menu cards and pamphlets to publicize your food’s superior quality over others. It provides you an edge over the many food operators not having the license. FSSAI number is required for food products. Selective customers want to consume food products specifically having the license.

Easy Business expansion can be easily done with FSSAI license. This establishes reputation and qualification to grow your business in a new direction with ease. It is easy to get Bank loans and funding for expansion. It is considered important for quality and long run.  

Provides legal advantage as it is very good practice before starting your business of food products. Now it is very easy to obtain the FSSAI license.

Procedure of getting FSSAI License

  • Firstly, visit the website of FSSAI
  • Signup by filling all the required details, for example, email – ID, Contact details
  • Make a unique user name which is not registered earlier in FSSAI website.
  • After completing all these you will receive a message of confirmation
  • This message shows that you have been registered online. This will be valid for only 30 days and within 30 days you need to apply for the license.
  • Now you have to apply for online License/Registration.
  • Fill the Online Application with all the required details.
  • This will take some time in loading your necessary documents.
  • Reference number should be noted that is displayed on the screen after submission of application.
  • Track the progress of your application for Registration or Licensing.
  • Annual Turnover Below 12 Lakhs - Registration Form A
  •  Annual Turnover from 12-20 Lakhs - State license Form B
  •  Annual Turnover above 20 Lakhs- Central license Form B

Procedure of Central License Application

Central licensing is provided according to eligibility criteria. In this every required data is provided to the department which should be correct and appropriate.

  • Generic names like coconut oil, flavoured milk should be written it should not contain brand names.
  • Names of food products must be approved products as per FSS Act 2006.
  • In condition where you want add a new product then click on ‘Select Food Category’ in the screen of Food Processing Unit and from the drop down menu select the food category
  • After it fill all food items one by one but for clarity.
  • Information should be correctly mentioned as the same will appear on your FSSAI License.
  • Download the form.
  • Upload form by using electronic signature.
  • Finally you will be asked for end process asking you for how many years you want to apply.
  • The cost of Central License is Rs. 24999

Procedure for State License Application

After checking the eligibility criteria you are eligible for multi licenses.

State license can be applied. This will be based on the pre-check procedure if you are falling in the category for State License then you will be directed to the State Licensing page where you will fill out the application.

State licensing process is similar to Central License.

The cost of State License is Rs. 14999


FSSAI is considered both boon and bane for food products in India. FSSAI provides quality and trust to the audience. Branding of any food product is incomplete without the FSSAI.FSSAI marked food products are considered fully free unsafe ingredients. 

How to start Food business in India

The food industry is something which never gets affected by the business cycle. This is one of the evergreen industry and when it comes to food how can Indian be lag behind because Indian loves food. If we go by numbers then [1]Indian food and grocery market are the world's sixth largest, with retail contributing 70 percent of the sales. Food has also been one of the largest segments in India's retail sector, which was valued at US$ 490 billion in 2013.

Having own restaurant may be a dream of every food lover but dreaming and taking action is two different things. Most of the people hesitate to take action because starting a business is not a child play. Being an owner you have to take care of each every aspect of business be it expense management or hiring people or complying laws etc, a list could be endless. Entering into food business can be so many like one can think about franchise model or having/creating its own brand by starting from the scratch.

To help young entrepreneur a little, a guide in the form of the following list has been carefully compiled which will definitely help you to avoid early stage pitfalls:

Choosing business entity

Firstly, be clear in mind regarding the entity type because that will help you to take a further decision in your business like from where to gets funds, what will be the liability of the business in case of defaults, how management or shareholders control the company etc. All these questions depend upon whether you want to incorporate private limited companies or LLP or public limited companies.

Each entity has its pros and cons which you have to take care before launching your business. Don’t adopt the hit and trial method to run your business.

Food business operating license

All restaurants operating throughout India are FSSAI, and all the restaurant has to obtain FSSAI license otherwise it is illegal to operate. This is one of the prominent requirements to start food business otherwise you can be stuck on a legal issue. FSSAI regulations make sure of Food safety from farm to the plate of the consumer.

Shops and Establishment License

Shop & Establishment Act is one of the legislation which requires a hotel, restaurant, boarding, or eating house, a cafe to take license or registration certificate.

Service Tax Registration

Service Tax registration is one of the requirements which is applicable to the food industries especially fast food chains business. Therefore, if you are going to enter into the arena of food industries then do obtain service tax registration if the value of your taxable services exceeds Rs. 9 lakh because it is the mandatory requirement under the service tax laws.

VAT registration

VAT stands for Value added tax and it is an indirect tax which recovered by the restaurants’ owner from the customers and deposits the same with the state government. So, VAT is applicable on the foods which are cooked in the restaurants because in this way restaurants create value addition. VAT rate vary from state to state, so you have to follow the VAT as per state wherein you are running your food business.

Trademark Registration

Every business, at last, requires a unique identity to make aware the general public about your business. Starting you business is one thing but creating a brand or value creation is different things.  Trademark registration is one way to create your business image. Trademark establishes the relationship between the goods or service and trademark’s owner. Since trademark can be registered in the form of a logo, tagline, image etc, therefore can be visualised easily.


This is simple one sheet guides to start your restaurants business in India which can help the young entrepreneur to observe other aspects as well to avoid any hassle.

[1] Google Source

How FSSAI regulates Restaurant in India

I don’t think there is any person who denies to delicious food but has you ever thought of how safe these foods are, before taking a bite. Well, it is next to impossible to go into details of the process of making foods and about its safety measures for an ordinary person like us.

In India, to regulate food industry the Government has laid down rules and regulation so that safe food available to consumers. These New regulations are known as FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) rules. FSSAI is working day and night for protecting and promoting public health through the regulation and supervision of food safety.

Therefore, now it’s like an alert for all restaurants operating throughout India that new license-Inspector Raj has been set up in the form of FSSAI, and all the restaurant has to obtain FSSAI online license otherwise it is illegal to operate.

Even FSSAI has not restricted itself only to prescribe standard for processing of foods rather it also prescribes separate packaging and labelling regulations which require that every package of Food must contain information such as name of food, list of ingredient, nutritional information, declaration regarding vegetarian and non- vegetarian and so on so that there should be transparency which is very important for those consumer who are health conscious.

FSSAI rules and regulation has become more relevant where we all very busy in our life and not realising how our health keep on deteriorating day by day. It’s now very common that we have our one-time food at eateries, more especially for those who live away from their hometown. Therefore, it is essential to have some regulatory body like FSSAI which can keep its eyes on these restaurants.

FSSAI’s effort will definitely bring down the food adulteration and food poisoning. FSSAI by put in place stringent regulations making sure of Food safety from farm to your plate and force the restaurant’s owner to heed towards food safety besides increasing their food chain business.

Hello! Mr Restaurant owner lets me introduce to you some of the grey areas which may force you to pull up your socks before winding up which are:

Penalty & Offences under FSSAI regulation:

  • Not having FSSAI license: If any person who is required to obtain FSSAI license, runs his Food business without such license shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 6 months and also with fine which may extend to Rs. 5 Lakh.
  • Food Quality issues: Penalty shall be levied upto Rs. 5 Lakh if foods sold are not match required quality standard.
  • Sub standard food: Selling sub standard food may attract penalty upto Rs. 5 Lkah.
  • Injury or death of consumer:
  • In case of death- penalty of not less than Rs. 5 Lakh.
  • In case of serious injuries- penalty upto Rs. 3 Lakh.
  • In case of other injuries- penalty upto Rs. 3 Lakh.
All about! FSSAI Rules & Regulations

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) is an agency of the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India. The FSSAI is responsible for protecting and promoting public health through the regulation and supervision of food safety.

FSSAI regulates all food business operators in the country & has entrusted the powers at various levels to other designated authorities like the FDA to speed the process of granting registration or licenses.

Who is required to obtain license under FSSAI regulation?

FSSAI license or registration is mandatory for all the entities which are running food business. Anyone who handles, processes, manufactures, sells, serves, stores, distributes transports or imports food, commonly known as Food Business Operators (“FBO”). It is even applicable to street food vendor.

What is need of FSSAI rules and Regulation?

  1. This is like one stop shop to all laws and departmental control.
  2. Connecting point for all matters related to Food safety, standard, Regulation etc
  3. Single licensing authority for one or more articles of food.

Kinds of FSSAI License:

FSSAI license is issued under two categories:

Kinds of FSSAI License<

Common documents for all types of entity:

  1. ID proof of promoters of business.
  2. Address proof of business premises.
  3. Constitutional documents of the company like LLP agreement in case of LLP or MOA and AOA in case of companies.
  4. List of food products.
  5. Food safety management plan
  6. Complete Form-B

Salient features of FSSAI regulation:

  1. Validity of License:
  2. Multiple License: A separate license or registration is required if the food articles are processed or handled from different location.
  3. Import of Foods: Food articles shall not be allowed to enter into India if article remaining shelf life is not upto 60%.
  4. In case FBO is operating in two states, then person has to obtain 2 license: one license for each separate location and one additional central license for Head Office/registered office.

Is FSSAI registration mandatory for E-tailers?

Yes, all the e-tailers like Zomato, Foodpanda, Grofer or online vendor dealing in foods has to obtain food license. Without registration, it would be illegal to deal in food for such companies.

Penalty & Offences under FSSAI regulation:

  • Not having FSSAI license: If any person who is required to obtain FSSAI license, runs his Food business without such license shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 6 months and also with fine which may extend to Rs. 5 Lakh.
  • Food Quality issues: Penalty shall be levied upto Rs. 5 Lakh if foods sold are not match required quality standard.
  • Sub standard food: Selling sub standard food may attract penalty upto Rs. 5 Lkah.
  • Injury or death of consumer:
  • In case of death- penalty of not less than Rs. 5 Lakh.
  • In case of serious injuries- penalty upto Rs. 3 Lakh.
  • In case of other injuries- penalty upto Rs. 3 Lakh.


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