SMVDSB adopts project ‘BHOG’ under Eat Right Initiative; Chairperson FSSAI visits SMVD Shrine

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KATRA:Chairperson Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), Rita Teaotia today stressed the need for implementation of Blissful Hygienic Offering to God (BHOG) project of FSSAI in and around the Holy Shrine of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Ji. She said Places of Worship like Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine be encouraged to adopt and maintain Food Safety and Hygiene while preparing Parsad/ Food.

Chairperson, FSSAI was here today at Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine to review the Food Safety Parameter followed by the Shrine Board for the visiting pilgrims. The Chairperson while appreciating the efforts already in place in the Shrine Board underscored that there is always a scope for improvement as the change is constant.

Implementation of BHOG would help to ensure that safe and wholesome parsad/ food is received by the devotees alongwith the blessing of Goddess. The Chairperson, FSSAI observed that the training of food handlers and stakeholders in and around the premises of the place of worship would be an integral part of the BHOG initiative. For this purpose she directed the concerned officers of Food & Drugs Administration, J&K UT to put in their best efforts for implementation of project BHOG in and around Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine.

The Chairperson, FSSAI said that a necessary audit for gap assessment would be conducted in near future to design the different components for carrying out training programs in a phased manner. She assured all possible assistance from the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India in delivering hygienic food to the visiting pilgrims.

Ramesh Kumar, Chief Executive Officer, Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVDSB) gave a detailed presentation about the various Catering facilities being provided by the Shrine Board for the pilgrims all along the track leading to the Holy Shrine, Katra and Jammu. He apprised that the main objective of the Catering Units run by the Shrine Board is to provide wholesome and hygienic food at reasonable cost round the clock confirming to the guidelines of FSSAI. All the Catering outlets of Shrine Board are licensed under Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 and under its ambit regular inspections, Sampling, Prosecutions, Training and Awareness programs are being conducted on regular intervals, he added.