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INTRODUCTION TO FOOD SAFETY

The term ‘food quality’ refers to attributes that influence a product’s value to the consumer. This includes both negative attributes such as spoilage, contamination, adulteration, food safety hazards and positive attributes such as origin, colour, flavour, texture. Food hygiene refers to all conditions and measures necessary to ensure safety and suitability of food at all stages of the food chain.

Food Safety and Quality have become a part of a wide spectrum of issues, which go beyond the avoidance of food – borne biological pathogens, chemical toxicants and other hazards. Consumer confidence in the safety and quality of the food supply is an important requirement and consumers are demanding protection for the whole food supply chain from primary producer to the end consumer, often described as from ‘farm or pond to the plate’ approach.

It is, therefore, paramount that hotels and restaurants understand the issues involved in food safety and Hazards Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP); and follow the required principles and procedures on this subject.

The Codex Alimantarius is the basic international standard of Food Safety and Hygiene that has been adopted by India and is being followed by all sectors of the food production industry. The Codex principles uses the HACCP approach to identify various points of potential hazard to food safety, establishes critical limits and control points and systems of taking corrective action and monitoring the effectiveness of these corrective action in ensuring food safety.

This PROPOSAL is the first step towards helping food in India achieving standards of food safety and implementing HACCP in their establishments

HACCP is based on the eight general principles of food hygiene that a hotel or restaurant need to follow to ensure that they are producing food that is safe for consumption by their customers

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as “zero risk” for food (or for anything else). Consequently, risk analysis is needed to determine what the hazards are and to identify their immediate, interim and long-term effects on human health.

The benefits from the use of HACCP are many and varied. Key benefits include:

1 HACCP is a systematic approach covering all aspects of food safety from raw material growth, harvesting and purchase to final product use

1 Use of HACCP will move a company from a solely retrospective end product testing approach towards a preventative quality assurance approach

1 HACCP provides for cost-effective control of food-borne hazards

1 A correctly applied HACCP study should identify all currently conceivable hazards, including those which can realistically be predicted to occur

1 Use of HACCP focuses technical resources into critical parts of the process

1 The use of preventative approaches such as HACCP leads to reduced product losses

1 HACCP is complementary to other quality management systems

1 International authorities such as the joint FAO/WHO Codex Alimenterious Commission promote HACCP as the system of choice for ensuring food safety

1 HACCP complies with legal requirements

What is HACCP

Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point is a process control system designed to identify microbial and other hazards in food production. It includes steps designed to prevent problems they occur and to correct deviations as soon as these are detected. Such preventive control systems with documentation and verification are widely recognized by scientific authorities and international organization as the most effective approach for producing safe food.

Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points is a documented system which enables a company producing, handling, supplying/delivering food product, to demonstrate the control it has over the conditions having an impact on food safety.

Explanation of HACCP Terminology a) Critical Control Point (CCP): CCP is an operation (practice, process, procedure or location) at which a preventive or control measure can be exercised that will eliminate, prevent or minimize a hazard or several hazards

 Benefits associated with HACCP-based adoption and certification from customer point of view:

  • Enables you to demonstrate a commitment to food safety
  • Conveys a degree of confidence required by consumers, retailers and buyers within the food industry
  • Provides buyers, consumers, government enforcement and trade agencies with justified assurance that control systems are in place to assure the safe production of food
  • It is based on the internationally-recognized Codex Alimentarius standards and guidelines and other national standards therefore International acceptance.
  • Regular assessments help you to continually monitor your food safety management system

 

Who can get HACCP/FSMS

All business in the food supply chain, from producers to retailers involved in preparation, processing, manufacturing, packaging, storage, transportation, distribution and handling can apply for HACCP. Includes Fruits & Vegetables, Dairy Products, Meat & Meat Products, Fish & Fish Products, Spices & Condiments, Nuts & Nut Products, Cereals & its Products, Bakery & Confectionery, Restaurants, Hotels & Fast Food Operations.

ISO 22000:2005(FOOD SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM)

l  It is a management system standard, provides a useful model for business improvement in the food industry, based on the process approach, with the management of the food safety risk at its core

l  In ISO 22000, ISO incorporates Codex HACCP to make the system easier to implement by companies worldwide, irregardless of variances in individual nations legislation or food products produced.

l  This International standard specifies the requirements for a food safety management system that combines the following  key elements:

  • Interactive communication
  • System Management
  • Pre requisite Programmes
  • HACCP Principles

l  It is used to develop FSMS that exceeds the minimum regulatory requirements

 Benefits of FSMS Certification

1     Improved product, process and service quality

2     Seal of Safety on your food service.

3     Improved Efficiency

4     Provide competitive advantage & builds customer confidence

5     It remains a contractual obligation or expectation in some industry sectors /exports

6     Reduces contamination and product destruction/recall.