Food Safety Plan: An Essential HACCP Concept
HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) is a concept which was primarily applied in the US space travel campaign in the 1960s. It is described as “a food safety program developed for astronauts … it focuses on the prevention of hazards that could cause food-borne illnesses by applying science-based controls, from raw materials to finished goods”. However, HACCP principles have spread throughout the food industry and culminated in a food safety plan. Its rapid adoption is due to it being efficient and reactive to certain situations. Previously, industry regulators spot-checked for manufacturing conditions and relied on a sampling of final products to ascertain the risks and hazards. The HACCP principle base system offers various advantages over the previously applied methodology:
- HACCP focuses on the identification and prevention of hazards that render food unsafe for human consumption.
- The new system permits effective and efficient government analysis due to proper recordkeeping. It helps to measure the degree of regulatory compliance of a firm and safety practices over a period of time.
- Reduces barriers of trade and enables local food companies to compete more effectively globally.
- Conduct a Hazard Analysis [Biological, Chemical, Physical Hazards, ]
- Determine Critical Control points (CCPs)
- Establish critical limits
- Establish monitoring procedures
- Establish corrective actions
- Establish verification procedures [Validation, Ongoing verification, Reassessment]
- Establish record-keeping and documentation procedures
- Identify and Analyze Every Known of Foreseeable Hazard
- Biological, chemical, and physical hazards, etc.
- Natural and unintentional hazards.
- Intentionally introduced hazards. (g., an act of terrorism)
Implement Preventive Controls
- Implement at critical control points (CCPs).
- Hazards identified to be significantly minimized or prevented.
- Manufactured food should not be misbranded or adulterated.
Supervise the Effectiveness of Preventive Controls
- Ensure hazards are significantly reduced or minimized.
Establish Emergency ProtocolIn the case of weak preventive controls:
- Ensure appropriate action to avoid repetition of such control failure or mismanagement.
- Food affected/verified through such controls is re-evaluated for safety.
- The affected food is stopped before entering the market as its safety cannot be verified.
- Adequacy of the controls implemented to prevent identified hazards.
- Monitoring of the business as required by law.
- Appropriateness of the corrective decisions.
- The effectiveness of preventive controls in identifying hazards, through the use of product testing and other means.
- Documentation and periodic updating of the Food Safety Plan to ensure relevance.
- Of records, for a minimum of two years, that document the monitoring of the preventive control results of the monitoring, instances of corrective decisions, and the efficiency of the decisions.
Preparation of a Written PlanWhich includes:
- Documentation and description of the company procedures and compliance with regulations.
- Analysis of hazards and adopted controls against them
Conduct a Re-Analysis
- If a change is made to the way the company operates or the activities it carries out.
- If the change gives way to potential new hazards, identify and document them.
- If there is no such change, a Re-Analysis is to be done every three years.
- New hazards and preventive controls against them need to be identified and recorded.
- Changes to be incorporated to the Food Safety Plan.