Understand more about the process
If you are a manufacturer of processed foods, under the Processed Foods Act (1959) and the Standards Act (1969), your factory must be registered with the National Compliance Regulatory Authority (NCRA) before your products can be distributed on the market. This requirement is in addition to registering your factory with the Ministry of Labour and Social Security (MLSS).
Prior to completing your application for registration and submitting it, the NCRA’s application process for registering your factory/food processing facility requires that you first complete several preliminary steps including the following:
• Label Assessment - done by the Bureau of Standard Jamaica’s (BSJ) Packaging Lab
- Every manufacturer must ensure that his or her product is properly labelled, providing basic, yet important information for the consumers. A label is any written, electronic, or graphic communication about the product on the packaging or on a separate but associated material. For Jamaica, the label must be in English, even if other languages are also included. For standards and guidelines.
• Product Sample Testing - done by the BSJ’s Chemical, Microbiology Food Lab
- The BSJ conducts related regulatory laboratory testing under its Standards Compliance/Import Monitoring Programme. Manufacturers are required to provide samples of all their products for testing prior to them entering the market.
• Testing Measuring Equipment - done by the NCRA
- The NRCA inspects and tests measuring equipment (e.g. scales, storage tanks, dispensers at petrol stations, weigh bridges) for accuracy. This is done during a factory visit.
• Food Handlers’ Permits - done by the Ministry of Health (MOH)
- In keeping with the Public Health Food Handling Regulation (1998), all persons (management/floor workers/security/office and ancillary staff) working in a food handling establishment, regardless of their position, need a valid food handlers' permit.
This activity will be done as a part of the application process.
• Factory Inspection - done by the NCRA
- Once your application has been submitted to register your factory, an inspection will be scheduled. During the factory inspection, the NCRA inspectors assess the following areas among others:
- general sanitation
- water supply (quality/source/etc.)
- screening of external openings (pest control)
- suitability of equipment for proposed use
- self-draining, impervious floors
- adequate lighting and ventilation
- impervious utensils and tables