Standards of the food industry: the importance of HACCP

In Europe, food companies are legally responsible for the safety of the food they produce, transport, store or sell. They are required to take a preventive approach, identifying and controlling risks before they put food safety at stake. To meet these requirements, many food companies follow applicable industry standards.

food security
Consumers expect legitimately food consumption is safe. Some foods that are unsafe can cause foodborne illness in the best case can be unpleasant and at worst deadly. Food security is closely linked to the physical, chemical and / or microbiological hazards that may be at any point in the food chain from agricultural or livestock farm the consumption of the product. Food businesses should play an important role in controlling these hazards. The food safety controls in the European Union were the subject of analysis above, at No. 79 Food Today1.

Hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP) is a system used by food to ensure food safety companies. Its origins date back to the sixties, when he came up with the goal of producing safe for the space program US2 food. This is a preventive system based on risk allowing food companies to identify critical control points (CCP) for physical hazards (p. eg., glass), chemical (p. eg., pesticides) and / or microbiological (p. eg., the bacteria causing food poisoning) before they put the safety of foods2 at stake. By law, all food businesses in Europe must implement and maintain procedures based on the principles of APPCC3 procedures.

Before applying the HACCP should be in place good hygiene practices (GHP). These practices are known as prerequisite programs, mostly concretized in pertinente3 legislation. Among the various cases hygiene and staff training are included; cleaning and sanitation; maintenance and services; pest control; facilities and equipment; dependencies and structure; storage, distribution and transport; and waste management. The primary producers (p. Eg., Farmers or ranchers) are subject to more estrictos3,4 hygienic requirements.

Standards of the food industry
The standards of the food industry are usually made by national or international organizations to which responsibility for standards and / or food security itself, such as the International Organization for Standardization (ISO, for its acronym in English) is entrusted. However, these rules can also be made by the food industry itself through a representative body such as the British Retail Consortium (BRC). The standards of the food industry play an important role in helping companies in the sector to produce a consistently safe and consistent with the legislación5 food products. It should be noted that the rules are not a substitute for legislation, but offer an interpretation of the law that allows implementation and continued compliance by food businesses. Many standards require the application of procedures that go beyond the requirements of the legislation, which serve as the basis for all management systems food security.

Currently, many rules may be subject to audits and certification mechanisms by independent third parties, such as the Societe Generale de Surveillance (today, known as SGS Societe Generale de Surveillance) 6.7. However, the certificates do not prove that food is safe, but simply to have occurred under a management system properly applied.

The European Union actively promotes the development of national guides to good hygiene practices and the application of the principles of APPCC3. Many of these guides include business initiatives such as good manufacturing practice (GMP), GHP and HACCP; thus they offer food enterprises a means to build an integrated security management system alimentaria8. It is a cost effective system to monitor the safety and quality of products. It also allows food companies demonstrate their commitment to food security, the environment and transmits to the confidence level that require both consumers and regulators.

HACCP establishes the foundations of European and international legislation in the food sector and is a key component of international trade in food products. Currently , the standards of the food industry play a key role , since they help food businesses to comply with legislation and , in many cases, go beyond legal requirements. They also allow food businesses ensure the regularity of its products in terms of safety and quality.

Standards of the food industry: the importance of HACCP

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