Food regulator FSSAI today directed Swiggy, Zomato, Foodpanda and 7 other such apps to stop using edibles supplied by non-licensed operators after consumer complaints of sub-standard food being served through e-commerce platforms. “Following a series of complaints related to sub-standard food being supplied by food businesses listed on e-commerce food service platforms, FSSAI has directed 10 such platforms to debar the non-FSSAI licensed/registered food operators and ensure compliance of food safety rules and regulations,” the regulator said in a statement. Box8, Faasos, FoodCloud, Foodmingo, Foodpanda, JusFood, LimeTray, Swiggy, UberEats and Zomato have been directed by the Food Safety and Standards Authority (FSSAI).
In February this year, FSSAI had operationalised guidelines for e-Commerce Food Business Operators (FBOs). As per the guidelines, the listed FBOs on e-commerce platforms need to display their licence numbers. It also mandated an agreement between the e-commerce platforms and FBOs to comply with the Food Safety and Standards ct, Rules and Regulations.
“However, FSSAI noted with serious concern that the compliance to these guidelines was patchy and there were complaints of restaurants/hotels without FSSAI license being listed and allowed to offer/sell food products on e-commerce food service platforms,” the statement said.
There were also several complaints of sub-standard food being delivered to consumers through online market aggregators, it added. “Food authority, in its direction to e-commerce food service platforms has asked them to initiate immediate action to delist the defaulting food businesses and submit an action taken report along with details of FBOs listed on their platforms by 31st July 2018,” the regulator said.
FSSAI has also directed the e-commerce platforms to furnish their FSSAI license, agreement signed with FBOs and their internal checks to ensure that their FBOs hold valid FSSAI licences. Stating that consumers will welcome this new move that aims to increase food safety, the regulator said that the online food platforms need to work harder to ensure compliance as soon as possible with this new legal framework.