To streamline the operations of the RAFT Scheme ensuring transparency and accountability
Dr Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Health Minister, Government of India, recently unveiled an innovative initiative by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)- the Rapid Food Testing Kit (RAFT) portal.
This portal aims to streamline the operations of the RAFT Scheme, ensuring transparency and accountability. Applicants can now conveniently apply for approval online, and all steps, from application processing to certificate issuance and renewal, can be carried out electronically.
This digitalisation promotes a paperless operation of the RAFT scheme, which was launched in 2019 to encourage the adoption of advanced technologies for food testing, screening, and surveillance purposes.
FSSAI has constituted a committee for scrutinisation of applications received by FSSAI under
this scheme. The recommendations of RAFT committee are ratified by the Scientific Panel on
Methods of Sampling and Analysis (SPSMA) and approved by the Competent Authority before
adoption/implementation. Thereafter, the status of all the rapid kit/equipment is placed before
the Food Authority for ratification.
Given the potential application of the commercial rapid test kits as screening tools, it is important that the performance of these rapid methods should, be validated against established reference methods to assess their reliability before adapting a new alternative or rapid method for regulatory use.