In January India’s Food Safety Standards Association, FSSAI, issued new guidelines for the importing of food & beverage products into India. These amended rules clearly state that goods intended for export and not domestic consumption will be exempt from the FSSAI rules. According to one legal counsel it appears that this is a positive evolution for the duty free retailers as it means that goods brought into the country for sale in the duty free shops are concerned by the exemption from FSSAI testing and labelling.
While the move seems positive for the industry as it recognises the fact that duty free is a different retail channel from the domestic market, industry stakeholders in India are still deliberating over the exact implications for departures and arrivals. It is not 100% clear yet whether this signifies a total reprieve for the industry. One thing is certain however; it clearly illustrates the need to constantly make the point that there is a clear difference between retail in the domestic market and the retail business in our industry. Only by continuing to make this point do we have a chance of ensuring we are not included within local legislation where our specific needs and circumstances are not taken into account.
APTRA will keep members updated on progress on this issue.