HACCP, or Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point, is a proven management system in which food safety is addressed through the analysis and control of biological, chemical, and physical hazards in raw material production, procurement, handling, manufacturing, distribution, preparation and consumption of food products. By applying HACCP methods, you can ensure farm-to-fork food safety effectively and efficiently.
HACCP requirements are included in food safety regulations in the United States, Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, and the European Union. Organizations outside these areas may also need HACCP certification to access these markets.
Regardless of location, the principles of HACCP are the same. Wherever you are located, QIMA can help you evaluate your food production processes, address any identified inconsistencies, and become HACCP certified.
Since it requires a strong food safety management program, HACCP certification prepares you for food safety inspections and audits. HACCP also requires effective data collection and reporting processes, which can serve your legal defense if needed and can provide information to improve your supply chain management, inventory accuracy, and cost control.
Where required by law, HACCP certification gives you access to the market. Whether required or not, HACCP certification establishes you as a reputable brand. HACCP helps you safeguard and prove the reliable safety of your products, greatly reducing the risks of negative press due to safety failures and increasing consumer confidence. HACCP certification not only assures the authorities that you meet food safety requirements, but also your customers.
Whether you are in the business of farming, food production/manufacturing, packaging, distribution, retail sales, or food service, the same seven HACCP principles apply:
1. Conduct a Hazard Analysis – Know the biological, chemical or physical risks likely to occur in your processes which will cause illness or injury if not controlled.
2. Determine the Critical Control Points (CCP) – Identify the point/step/procedure at where a control can prevent, eliminate, or reduce to acceptable levels a food safety hazard.
3. Establish Critical Limits – Define the maximum or minimum value to which a parameter (e.g., temperature, time, physical dimensions, presence of pathogens) must be controlled to prevent, eliminate, or reduce the food safety hazard.
4. Establish Monitoring Procedures – Establish planned observations or measurements to determine and record whether a hazard is under control at a CCP.
5. Establish Corrective Actions – For each CCP where a CL is not met, identify the actions to be taken (eliminating the cause, ensuring future control, disposing of the product).
6. Establish Record Keeping Procedures – Ensure that all measurements taken at a CCP and any corrective actions are documented and records are retained for verification.
7. Establish Verification Procedures – Validate that controls are sufficient to manage likely hazards, ensure that the HACCP system is working, and reassess the plan periodically.
By applying these principles and putting a food safety management system in place that follows the strict requirements of HACCP auditing and assurance, you can prove your organization’s commitment to food safety and earn HACCP certification from QIMA.
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