The testing services for regulation and monitoring of food quality and safety is provided by National Food Testing Laboratory (NFTL) established under Food Safety and Quality Division (FSQD), BAFRA. At the district level, the basic testing of food commodities are carried out in the Satellite laboratories. Further, NFTL also provides technical backstopping to the inspection services of BAFRA and facilitates trade by providing the analytical services. National Food Testing Laboratory was established as the National Quality Control Laboratory in 2001 and the change in the nomenclature came into effect from May, 2011. Since then, NFTL has been engaged in testing of food products and water samples. The services are provided to both in-house regulatory inspectors and customers such as other government agencies, private sectors and the general public. Additionally, the lab is also responsible for providing food-testing services for trade facilitation including both import and export. It has testing facilities for Food Microbiology, Food Chemistry and GMO Detection.

For quality assurance and building customer confidence in Test Reports, NFTL is accredited for ISO/IEC 17025: General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories since 2012 by National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL), India. As a part of the Laboratory Accreditation Programme, NFTL is assessed regularly by the Accreditation Body to ensure the continued compliance to the requirements of the standard and for the renewal of the Accreditation.

The satellite laboratories located at the entry points cater simple testing of food commodities and also preparation of samples for testing at NFTL and also caters to testing needs of plant and animal quarantine services.

The core mandates of the division are as follow:

  • Establish and implement food import control systems
  •  Inspection and monitoring of food and feed processing units and businesses
  •  Inspection and monitoring of food and feed products for exports/imports/domestic use
  • Surveillance, inspection and monitoring of GM foods and feeds
  • Investigation and management of food safety incident, food-borne disease outbreaks
  • Export certification of food commodities for export
  • Create Awareness on Food Safety of Food Business Operators and consumers through education, training and sensitization programmes
  • Coordinate formulation of Technical Regulations for Food Commodities
  • Function as the Focal Points for Codex Alimentarius Commission & International Food Safety Authorities Network (INFOSAN) for International Health Regulations
  • Liaise with other relevant agencies at the National, Regional and International level relating to food safety matters
  • Conduct relevant research



Plant and animal quarantine Services

The primary mandates of Bhutan Agriculture and Food Regulatory Authority (BAFRA) is to implement effective biosecurity measures to protect the agriculture farming system including animal health, and public health from risks of entry, establishment and spread of exotic and or notifiable pests and diseases. Thus, a major role is placed…more

Import permit and clearance

Import of animals/plants and their products are allowed into the country with prior approval and obtaining Import Permit from BAFRA. At arrival at the point of entry, the consignment intended for import must be accompanied with a Phytosanitary Certificate for plant consignment and Zoo-sanitary Certificate for animal consignment…more

In-country movement permits

Bhutan Agriculture and Food Regulatory Authority implements measures to reduce the transmission of animal or plant, pest and diseases from one dzongkhag to another. Hence In-Country Movement Permits are issued


Export certification

BAFRA facilitates the export of plant and plant products by issuing the certificates as per the requirements of the importing country following the procedure below…more

Food Handlers’ Licensing

BAFRA issues food handlers license after a health interview, training on food safety, and signing an undertaking that the food handler and all those under their supervision avoid themselves from handling food under certain conditions of illness as listed below…more

Registration & Licensing Services

A person who intends to operate a food business requires a food safety license from BAFRA. BAFRA issues food safety licence to a food business that complies with BAFRA GHP/GMP Criteria  for Licensing of food business. To obtain a food safety licence…more

Food Testing Services

To provide food testing services to the regulators, food businesses and the general public, National Food Testing Laboratory was established, and it has following testing facilities..more

Certification Services

BAFRA provides product certification services to support the farmers, industries and commerce in Bhutan for market access and trade facilitation. BAFRA implements product certification in conformity with ISO IEC 17065:2012 to provide a third party mark of certification. Our certification services will enable you…more

Biosafety (GMO) Services

The Biosafety requirements are implemented as per the Biosafety Act of Bhutan 2015, and Biosafety Rules and Regulations 2018. The objectives of this Act is to protect, conserve and safeguard the biodiversity of Bhutan and also to promote the nation’s food and nutrition security and safeguard the animals and human health from unintended effect of Genetically Modified Organism (GMO).  Read More…





Bhutan Food and Drug Authority, Ministry of  Health, Post Box: 1071, 

Thimphu, Bhutan, Tel: +975-02-327031/325790 Fax: +975-02-327032/335540