The Commissionerate of Food safety is an autonomous body under the Health & Family Welfare Department. As per Section 30 of FSS Act 2006, the state Government shall appoint the Commissioner of Food Safety as head of the Commissionerate for the state for efficient implementation of Food Safety & Standards and other requirements laid down under this Act and the rules and regulations made thereunder. The main function of the Commissionerate of Food Safety is to ensure safe and wholesome food to the consumers.
The State of Meghalaya has a population of about 34.7 lakhs as per estimated in 2022. The sheer magnitude of Food Safety is a challenging task at field and testing levels. The responsibilities of compliance of Food Safety & Standards Act 2006 rest primarily under the State Government through its Enforcement and Technical machineries.
The Commissionerate of Food Safety consists of two (2) wings i.e., Enforcement wings & Technical wings. These two (2) wings work side by side to ensure safety of food and water to all citizen of our state.
The foremost responsibilities of the Enforcement Officers of Food Safety are to regulate the manufacture and its processes, storage, Distribution, sale and Import to ensure the availability of safe and wholesome food for human consumption. The Enforcement officers initiate collection of samples on site and further sent it for Laboratory testing.
The responsibilities of the Technical officers is to ensure that the food collected should be tested as per FSS Act 2006 to analyze quality and safety parameters including pesticide residues, heavy metals, antibiotics, microbiological contamination in food products etc,. The purpose of testing is to provide objective analytical data on the quality of a product or a process. Food testing helps safeguard product quality, ensure its safety and determines health benefits or risks of any food products before consumption.
During the Prevention of Food Adulteration regime (PFA), the Enforcement wing was under the Directorate of Health Services (MI), and the Technical wing (Testing) was under the Directorate of Health Services (Research), Health & Family Welfare Department. In pursuance of the implementation of the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 and repeal of the prevention of Food Adulteration Act 1954, the two (2) wings was merged together under one Commissionerate i.e., the Commissionerate of Food Safety, Vide Notification No. 128/2008/807/dtd.16.12.2014.