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MAY
The lockdown which scheduled to end on 3 May 2020 has been extended.
The government announced that the lockdown which scheduled to expire on 3 May 2020 has been prolonged until 17 May with loosened restrictions. The new Guidelines was issued and applicable based on the risk profiling of the districts into Red (Hotspot), Green and Orange Zones.
In addition to coloured zones, the States/Uts and District Administrations have the right to demarcate Containment Zones within Red and Orange zones. Stricter protocol shall be fulfilled in these Containment Zones, including no public movement is allowed to in or out of these Containment Zones , except for medical emergencies and for maintaining supply of essential goods and services.
Impact on Food Supply Chain
  • From the new guidelines, all activities which are not specifically prohibited or permitted with restrictions in the various zones, will be permitted. For food sector, the food supply chain will remain unhampered throughout the extended lockout period.
  • However, it is believed that the concerns will remain the same on the ground, including the interpretation of legislation by the enforcement officials, logistics issues, and the availability of labour.
  • The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) will continue to work closely with the government authorities in order to ensure the operation of food supply chain is unhampered during the extended lockdown.
  • Amid of the lockdown, on 6 May, the Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) launched a training programme on COVID-19 precautions for food business. Food businesses can participate this certified programme through https://www.fostac.fssai.gov.in/
  • 30
    APR
    Updates on 21-day lockdown announcement (scheduled to end on 3 May 2020)
    The existing lockdown continues to 3 May with the strict implementation of the consolidated guidelines published. On 24 April, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) announced the amendments in the consolidated revised guidelines for strict implementation to contain COVID-19 in India.
    The amendments made give more relaxations in the category of commercial and private establishments, where all shops registered under Shops & Establishment Act of respective States/Uts, except shops in multi-brand and single brand malls, will be allowed to operate during the lockdown period with strict requirements (50% manpower with wearing of masks and social distancing).
    Impact on Food Supply Chain
  • Amid the lockdown, the Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) has been regularly seeking inputs on the challenges faced by industries at the state and district level with the support from the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
  • On 24 April, in the meeting between MoFPI and FICCI, main concerns faced by food industry during the lockdown were raised. These concerns include the interpretation of legislation by the enforcement officials on the ground, logistics issues due to the timing and inter & intra state movement restrictions, and the availability of labour due to the migration of workforce. These concerns have led to the manufacturing plants not being able to operate at full capacity.
  • Some key actions were suggested, including enhancing capacity utilisation limit, unlocking state operation, continuously address the inadequate availability of labours. FICCI will continue to work closely with the government authorities in order to ensure the operation of food supply chain is unhampered during the lockdown.
  • 24
    APR
    Updates on 21-day lockdown announcement. The existing 21-day lockdown is extended.
    The lockdown is scheduled to expire on 3 May 2020.
    Starting from 20 April, selected additional activities start operate in accordance with the requirements as stipulated in the existing consolidated revised guidelines on lockdown measures. However, the strict restrictions will continue in districts which declared as COVID-19 hotspots.
    Impact on Food Supply Chain
  • The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has clarified that the clause 14(v) of the consolidated revised guidelines, relating to e-commerce companies has been only excluded for non-essential goods. However, the e-commerce companies should continue to operate for the essential goods to ensure smooth movements of the entire supply chain of essential goods.
  • The government has clarified that the supply of essential goods under clause 13 (i) of the consolidated revised guidelines is applied to food processing units such as bread factories, milk processing plants, flour mills, dal mills etc. located in urban areas. These factories which allowed to operate shall fulfil the lockdown measures as specified by the government.
  • The press release from Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), it highlighted the steps taken to ensure uninterrupted food services/supply, and industry facilitation during the lockdown period in India. In addition to ensure a smooth business operation, FSSAI has also initiated online training module for food handlers on the importance of food safety and hygiene practices to prevent COVID-19.
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