HACCP (Hazard analysis and critical control points) is a systematic preventive approach to food safety. It is used to prevent food contamination from biological, chemical, and physical hazards in production processes. This contamination can cause the finished product to be unsafe. It also helps design measurements to reduce these risks to a safe level.
The HACCP System requires that potential hazards are identified and controlled at specific points in the process. This includes biological, chemical or physical hazards. Any company involved in the manufacturing, processing or handling of food products can use HACCP to minimize or eliminate food safety hazards in their product.
HACCP plan steps
There are 12 necessary steps for HACCP implementation, they are:
- Create the food safety team
- Describe the food in great detail
- Describe the intended consumer and how they are going to consume the food
- Diagram the process flow, from receiving to shipping
- Verify the process flow diagram
- Conduct a hazard analysis
- Determine critical control points
- Set critical limits
- Establish monitoring procedures
- Establish corrective actions
- Verify, then validate
- Establish good record keeping
Principles of the HACCP system
A food safety management system based on the principles of HACCP will enable hazards to be identified and controlled before they threaten the safety of food and your customers. There are 7 principles of HACCP:
1. Conduct a Hazard Analysis
To ensure compliance to food safety regulation, thereby complying with organization best practices, hazard analysis must be carried out. This hazard analysis will aim to identify the hazard in the food production process and also evaluate the risks.
Hazards can be physical, biological, etc. This process must be carried out by an expert. If there is no expert in your organization to carry out this hazard identification and evaluation; then an external personnel should be hired.
2. Identify the Critical Control Points
Critical control points are the steps in your process where controls can be applied to prevent or eliminate the hazards that have been identified. For each critical control point you will identify the preventive measure.
3. Establish Critical Limits
Your next step is to establish criteria for each critical control point. The criteria must be met to control the hazard at a particular point, the minimum temperature required, the regulatory limits that you must meet for this control point, etc.
4. Establish Monitoring Procedures
You will need to monitor the process at the critical control point and keep records to show that the critical limits have been met. The monitoring program will be made up of physical measurement or observations that can be done in a timely manner, to provide the information in a time frame that allows you to take action and control product if an out of control situation occurs.
5. Establish Corrective Actions
You will establish what actions need to be taken if a critical limit is not met. This will be identified ahead of time for each CCP. The action must make sure that no unsafe product is released. There must also be an evaluation of the process to determine the cause of the problem and an elimination of the cause.
The action or actions taken have two purposes; to control any nonconforming product resulting from the loss of control, and to identify the cause, eliminate it and prevent the situation from reoccurring. By identifying the corrective action before an out of control situation occurs, you are prepared to take action quickly if and when it does occur.
6. Establish Record Keeping Procedures
Record keeping is very important in HACCP, since it could be used as a reference point to compare the result derived from the organization HACCP system with statutory requirements and regulations.
7. Establish Verification Procedures
Validation and re-validation is necessary to ensure that the HACCP plan is still in a workable state.
HACCP certification is an international standard defining the requirements for effective control of food safety. It is built around seven principles as stated above.
Some of the HACCP related certifications are:
- HACCP implementation training course
- Food safety (HACCP) requirements training program
- Current good manufacturing practices awareness training course
- Advanced HACCP for food safety
- Understanding HACCP for food safety
- Introduction preventive control plan
- Food safety fundamental for industrial meat cutter
- National sanitation training program
- Good manufacturing process
- Food spoilage and food safety
- Workplace essentials: Oral communication
- Workplace essentials: Document use.
HACCP APP (HACCP Application)
Mobile applications exist for use to ensure accurate and less stress reporting of all HACCP activities.
Follow the link below to read about the HACCP app and how it works.
Cost of HACCP
According to Infocus management group HACCP program can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000 to develop, plus ongoing maintenance fees. Please contact us for a quote tailored specifically to your food business’ needs.