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Of late the Indian Customs is getting stricter about the implementation of Legal Metrology laws for businesses in India.
An application made under Rule 27 of the Legal Metrology Packaged Commodities Rules, 2011 to the Director or the Controller for all pre-packed commodities which are meant for end customers. Under the above-mentioned rule, every packer / manufacturer / importer of the pre-packed commodity rules does require Packer Registration.
Under Rule 6 of PCR, 2011 is the responsibility of every packer to make mandatory declarations prescribed under the PCR. Normally when you import the pre-packed commodity, you must have to ensure that the packaging of the imported commodity must be in compliance with tPCR, 2011 under the Legal Metrology Act, 2009. The power of granting packer registration is vested with the state government as well as the central government.
However, it is pertinent to note that if you are willing to sell your pre-packed commodities in more than one state then you must mandatorily go for packer registration by the central government. It is commonly known as an LMPC certificate as well.
Any importer that imports any pre-packed commodities commodity to distribute or sell, then he needs to apply for the packer / manufacturer registration under rule27 of the Legal Metrology Packaged Commodities Rules, 2011.
The registration must be applied within 90 days from the date when the import has been commenced.
The compliance of packaging commodity rules must be done before the goods are imported in India. Under these rules, importer must ensure that certain mandatory declarations are made on the pre-packed commodities.
Under the packaged commodity rules, certain mandatory declaration like country of origin, manufacturer name and address, importer address, month and year of manufacturing, month and year of import etc. must be made. The scope of declarations to be made on pre-packed commodity varies from product to product; say declarations to be made on food products will be different from the non-food items.
Importers of pre-packed commodities should obtain the LMPC Certificate before making any import, as it happens most often that custom authorities tend to stop the clearance of goods for want of LMPC certificate, this creates panic situation for importer.
The Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution amended the Legal Metrology Packaged Commodities Rules, 2011, the amendment was effective from January 01, 2018. The rules regulate the content and the manner of declaration to be made on the packaged commodities.
The key provisions from the amendments have been highlighted below:
1. Amendment introduced a new definition of the “Pre-Packaged Commodity”.
2. Pre-Packaged Commodity means a commodity which without the purchaser being present is placed in a package of whatever nature, whether sealed or not, so that the product contained therein has a pre-determined quantity.
3. No person shall declare the different Maximum Retail Price on a similar pre-packed commodity.
4. It is mandatory to declare the name of the country of origin or manufacturer or assembly in case of imported products.
5. The name and address of a company is mentioned on the label with qualifying words “manufactured by”/ “packed-by”.
6. The common or generic names of the commodity should be mentioned on the package.
7. If a package contains a commodity which may become unfit for human consumption after a period, the ‘best before or use by the date’ month and years shall also be mentioned on the label.
8. Declarations required on food products have been harmonized with labelling requirements under the Food and Standards Act, 2006.
9. The packages containing cosmetics products, the provisions of the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945 shall apply.
10. If Packages Containing commodities that have a shelf-life bear on their labels “Best before or use by the date, month and year.”
11. The retail sale price of the package shall clearly indicate that it is the maximum retails price inclusive of all taxes and the price n rupees and paise be rounded off to the nearest rupee or 50 paise.
The above provisions Legal Metrology PCR Rules, 2011 do not apply on following commodities:
1. If the package commodities containing quantity of more than 25 kilograms or 25 litres.
2. Packaged commodities meant for the institutional consumer or industrial consumers.
3. Fertilizers, cement, and agriculture farm produce sold in bags of more than 50 kilograms.
Importer Registration U/S 19: This License applies to importers of weight and measuring items. It is issued by central government only and it comes with validity of 5years.
Importer Registration U/R 27 (LMPC): This License applies to anyone who imports any commodity for sale, distribution, or delivery. It is issued by central government and state government as well, but central license has much larger scope of applicability and it comes with infinite validity as one time registration.
Model Approval: This Approval requires for any weight and measuring items. Model Approvals are issued by the central government post successful testing of the model in notified Rotary Standard Laboratories and no limited validity period do apply on this.However Model Approval is required for each model seperately.
Packer Registration U/R 27: This License applies to any person or a firm, which pre-packs any commodity whether in a bottle, tin, wrapper or otherwise in units suitable for sale, is a Packer. Packers need to get themselves registered with this Department. This license is issued by central government and state government as well but central license has much larger scope of applicability and it comes with infinite validity as one time registration.