Government of India
Ministry of Finance, Department of Revenue
Central Board of Excise and Customs
( Single Window Proiect Team)
New Delhi, Date: 31st August 2016
All Chief Commissioners of Customs / Customs (Preventive)/Central Excise,
All Principal Commissioners of Customs / Customs (Preventive)/Central Excise,
All Commissioners of Customs / Customs (Preventive)/Central Excise,
Subject : Single Window Project – clearance of food consignments by Customs officers at locations where FSSAI has provided delegation- reg.
Kind reference is invited to Board’s Circular No. 03/2016 dated 03.02.2016 and Circular No. 10/2016 dated 15.03.2016 regarding the operationalisation of the Single Window Interface for Facilitating Trade (SWIFT) from 01st April 2016 at all EDI locations throughout India.
2. In SWIFT, the system automatically refers food-related consignments to the Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) through an EDI linkage established between ICEGATE and the Food Import Clearance System (FICS) operated by FSSAI. This automatic reference of food consignments is done in respect of food imports to those locations where FSSAI has its offices. For the remaining ICES locations, the system generates instructions directing that ‘Authorised Officers’ may clear the consignment (wherever, such ‘Authorised Officers’ are present) and in other locations where ‘Authorised Officers’ are not present, the consignments may be referred to Port Health officers for an NOC.
3. FSSAI has offices in 6 cities covering 25 ICES locations. For the Customs locations where FSSAI does not have offices, it has issued an order No. 1-1371/FSSAl/lmports/2015 dated 29th March 2016 (copy enclosed), delegating authority to Customs Officers to perform the functions of an ‘Authorised Officer’ under food safety laws. Commissioners of Customs are requested to identify the locations mentioned in this order that are falling in their jurisdiction and should ensure that officers responsible for the clearance of food related consignments are duly authorised in terms of the above order.
4. FSSAI has also issued a list of accredited laboratories for the testing of all food-related consignments vides Order F.No. 11/202/LAB REC/QA/FSSAl/2016 dated 09th August 2016. A copy of this list is enclosed which may please be adhered to. Prior to clearance, the Customs officers posted in the shed should record in the system the acceptance or rejection of the consignments as part of the examination report as this would help in carrying out risk analysis.
5. As all ‘Authorised Officers’ may not be familiar with procedural requirements for the clearance of food-related import consignments. It is advised to organize training sessions on an ongoing basis to equip the authorised officers with the procedural and legal requirements relating to food safety. For this purpose, Commissioners of Customs are requested to contact the nearest offices of the FSSAI and organize in-house training within the Custom House. Arrangements are also being made with NACEN and the FSSAI headquarters to conduct periodic training of our officers in the Regional Training Institutes (RTIs).
6. Any difficulties faced by field formations pertaining to above issues may kindly be referred to Single Window Project team, CBEC.
Commissioner – Single Window