HACCP is the systematic preventive approach to food safety that addresses physical, chemical, and biological hazards as a means of prevention rather than finished product inspection. This approach has significant benefits to organizations operating within the food supply chain as it enables them to determine key controls over processes and concentrate resources on activities that are critical to ensuring safe food.
Retailers, the food industry and Government in particular are concerned about ensuring that food is produced safely and that the consumer has confidence in the product. This has led to an increase in legislation over time that has focused upon ensuring safe systems of food production.
What are the benefits?
- Customer satisfaction – through delivery of products that consistently meet customer requirements including quality, safety and legality.
- Reduced operating costs – through continual improvement of processes and resulting operational efficiencies.
- Operational efficiencies – by integrating pre-requisite programs (PRP’s & OPRP’s), HACCP with the Plan-Do-Check-Act philosophies of ISO 9001 to increase the effectiveness of the Food Safety Management System.
- Improved stakeholder relationships – including staff, customers and suppliers.
- Legal compliance – by understanding how statutory and regulatory requirements impact the organization and its customers and testing compliance through internal audits and management reviews.
- Improved risk management – through greater consistency and traceability of product.
- Proven business credentials – through independent verification against recognized standards.
- Ability to win more business – particularly where procurement specifications require certification as a condition to supply.
How to achieve certification?
Following steps are to be followed to implement HACCP:
- Top Management’s Commitment
- Selection of Capable Consultant
- HACCP Risk Assessment
- Internal Audit
- Selection of Certification Agency
- Certification Audit
Initial Certification Audit
The assessment process for achieving certification consists of a two stage Initial Certification Audit as follows:
Stage 1 – the purpose of this visit is to confirm the readiness of the organization for full assessment.
The assessor will:
- Confirm that the management system manual conforms to the requirements of HACCP.
- Confirm its implementation status
- Confirm the scope of certification
- Check PRP’s, OPRP’s, HACCP, legislative compliance and customer requirements
- Produce a report that identifies any non-compliance or potential for non-compliance and agree a corrective action plan if required
- Produce an assessment plan and confirm a date for the Stage 2 assessment visit.
Stage 2 – the purpose of this visit is to confirm that the quality management system fully conforms to the requirements of HACCP Principals in practice.
The assessor will:
- Undertake sample audits of the processes and activities defined in the scope of assessment including production methods, controls, PRP’s, HACCP plans and procedures, as well as test your personnel’s skills and knowledge in food safety as well as practical application
- Document how the system complies with the standard Report any non-compliances or potential for non-compliance.
- Produce a visit plan for the first surveillance visit.
If the assessor identifies any non-conformance, the organization cannot be proceed until corrective action is taken and verified.
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