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Mumbai: Food chains get 83-point hygiene checklist, two months to comply

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MUMBAI: Some of the city’s top food chains have been handed over a checklist of 83 points related to hygiene, food safety, transportation of food and personal hygiene. They are expected to comply within the next two months.
On Tuesday, the state Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officials met representatives from Burger King, KFC, McDonalds, Faasos, Mainland China, Wok Express, Barbeque Nation, among many others, and gave them a checklist comprising norms laid down under schedule 4 of the Food Safety Act.

“All these chains are popular and see massive footfall. While most have hygiene practices of their own, we wanted uniformity and compliance under the Act,” said Pallavi Darade, FDA commissioner. Most of these chains have 350-400 outlets across the state. “Targeting them for hygiene would mean we are reaching out to a big number,” she said.

Among the requirements are updated Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) licence, prominently displayed in the restaurant premises. The internal structures and fittings have to be made of non-toxic and impermeable material. Walls, ceilings and floors should be free from flaking paint. The checklist also calls for proper segregation of raw material and cooked food as well as vegetarian and non-vegetarian food. An official said that failure to comply with the norms could also mean suspension or cancellation of licence for that outlet.
“We have given the chains two months, following which we will conduct surprise checks,” said Darade. When asked if the action was prompted by complaints of unhygienic food, she said, “We get sporadic complaints which we investigate from time to time. But this initiative is to ensure maximum reach”

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