FSSAI rules will hit small traders with economic pandemic: CAIT’s Suresh Sonthalia

Jamshedpur, Jharkhand, Kolhan No Comments on FSSAI rules will hit small traders with economic pandemic: CAIT’s Suresh Sonthalia 126

Two crore traders and 15 lakh crore business to hit

Jamshedpur, Sept. 20: Nearly two  crore small and tiny shopkeepers across country will lose more than 75% of their business amounting to about 15 lakh crore per year because of a recent notification of the Central Government and these small and tiny traders who are already suffering with a huge backlash due to COVID pandemic have been forced to face this economic pandemic. The CAIT has sent a letter to Union Health Minister Dr Harshvardhan and Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal demanding withdrawal of FSSAI Rules ‘ Regulations.

The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) said that the Food Safety and Standards Authority ( FSSAI), on 4 September issued a notification the said notification, Food Safety and Standards (Safe food and balanced diets for children in school) Regulations which provides that” food products high in saturated fat or trans-fat or added sugar or sodium in school campus or to school children in an area within fifty meters from the school gate in any direction.” will not be allowed to be sold. The CAIT while strongly opposing the Regulations termed it as a “ barbaric Rules” said that it highly contravene the call of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for vocal on local and Atmnirbhar Bharat. Snatching business of small & tiny traders speaks to the non- sensitivity of Government officials who are not sparing any effort in destabilising the domestic trade of the Country and FSSAI is an autocratic body which never consult the stakeholders before bringing any Rules or Regulations.

CAIT National Secretary Suresh Sonthalia said that across Country about 2 crore  small shops/vendors includes mostly neighbourhood shops like General stores, Pan Shops, Kirana shops and other small & tiny shops which keeps all kinds of FMCG items to meet the needs of neighbourhood consumers. It would include food and beverages, other grocery, personal and home care items. To fulfill customer’s needs, a complete mix of shopping basket is critical to stay relevant and viable. The demography of every city in the Country is such that there will be no space where shops do not exist within 50 meters in any direction of any kind of school including Nursery, KG, crèche, Coaching Centre, Mid level and High level School and Colleges and other types of educational Institutions . As per the Rules nobody will be allowed to sale any product which is having sugar, salt or Aerated Water.

Sonthalia  said that these neighbourhood shops were instrumental in playing the most crucial role during lock down in providing daily need requirements of the people. Not allowing these shops to  keepi the Food and beverage products is bound to impact the sale of other items and losing the customer base. More importantly, it will reduce the footfall if shopkeepers are not able to provide a full range of products. Such a regulation dampens the very spirit of Ease of Doing Business specifically for the hardworking entrepreneurial class of small business owners and traders.

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