Food Safety Knowledge Assimilation Networks (FSKAN)

Key Facts about the initiative:

Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) under its mandate as specified in Section 16, 3(e) have to establish a system of network of organizations with the aim to facilitate a scientific co-operation framework by the co-ordination of activities, the exchange of information, the development and implementation of joint projects, the exchange of expertise and best practices in the fields within the Food Authority’s responsibility.

There is a great need for flow of information regarding food safety. People should be made aware about the recent developments in food safety area. This has been achieved by FSSAI by creating FSKAN portal. FSKAN would facilitate the establishment of a scientific cooperation frame work by assimilation as well as exchange of scientific information and coordination of research activities across the country. Through FSKAN, FSSAI will collaborate with premier Institutes/ Organizations/ State Agriculture Universities etc involved in science based research. It will also be a database of profiles of scientists/researchers/technologists working at premier Research Institutes/ Organizations, leading academic institutions and Universities involved in teaching and research in India who can be a resource for FSSAI or other Organizations when required to be consulted for particular purpose related to food safety. FSKAN will serve as a consortium of research thesis, e-books, e-journals, leading research papers and articles pertaining to Food safety, hygiene and nutrition.

Two Components of FSKAN:

  1. Assimilation of information with scientific experts nationally or internationally on emerging food safety issues and best practices in the fields within the Food Authority’s responsibilities
  2. Formulation and execution of joint projects (pull and push type) where gaps or uncertainty in risk assessment for food safety exist

Two Components of FSKAN:

  • Building a scientific community for collation of knowledge and expertise at one place
  • Provide an electronic forum for scientific consultation
  • Wider exposure of research findings
  • Harmonize standard setting process
  • Avoid duplication and divergent scientific opinions in food safety area
  • Ensuring rapid access to information during food safety events
  • Shares information on important food safety issues of global interest
  • Promotes partnership and collaboration between countries
  • strengthen capacity to manage food safety risks

Work done so far:

  • More than 180 External Experts are linked to this network
  • Around 200 Internal Experts i.e., members of Scientific Committee and Scientific Panels (16) are linked to FSKAN
  • More than 75 institutions (both government and private) have given their consent for joining the network
  • More than 24 open-access Journals, 50 e-Thesis, Research articles, etc. related to Food Safety and Nutrition are made available
  • Areas of Concerns across various food sectors have been identified
  • Online procedure for R&D with facility of online project submission, tracking and administrative module for internal monitoring and evaluation of the projects is under development stage

Way Forward:

  • A facility will be provided for ‘Expeditious projects’ in which short term projects/studies will be granted for cases where immediate assessments are required.
  • Electronic platform will be developed for consultation on issues of food safety under ‘Open Consultation Forum’. A theme based on current issued in areas of food safety will be displayed and all stakeholders will be invited to provide their inputs. The stakeholders will be invited to contribute their formal inputs towards shaping the themes and format of the Forum.
  • A section ‘Call for Experts’ will be introduced where scientists/ researchers/ technologists working at premier Research Institutes/ Organizations/ Universities involved in teaching and research in India can register with FSSAI and become a member of FSKAN.
  • Scientific articles and videos related to food safety will be uploaded on portal for information and dissemination.
  • ‘FSKAN Blog’ will be initiated which will serve as a platform on which scientific articles will be uploaded monthly from the members of FSKAN. A topic related to food safety will be introduced and members and public will be invited to write articles on these topics.