HACCP Systems

The ISO 22000 standard for food safety management systems really adds value to your HACCP system. Prerequisite programmes to control the introduction of food safety hazards through the work environment, preventing product contamination and controlling hazard levels in the product and product environment are required when implementing an ISO 22000 compliant HACCP system.

ISO 22000 clause 7.2.3 states that construction and lay-out of buildings/premises, workspace, employee facilities; supplies of utilities, waste disposal, adequate equipment, management of purchased materials, storage and transport, prevention of cross contamination, sanitation, pest control and personnel hygiene should be taken into consideration when establishing prerequisite programmes. ISO 22000 clause 7.3.2 requires a food safety team with multi-disciplinary knowledge and experience in developing and implementing the food safety management system to be appointed. 

The food safety team are required to carry out a number of preliminary steps in order to carry out the hazard analysis. In preparation for Hazard Analysis the HACCP team are required to describe the product characteristics including raw materials, ingredients, product contact materials, end products and the intended use of the end product as per ISO 22000 clauses 7.3.3 and 7.3.4. The food safety team will then need to prepare flow diagram and confirm the flow diagram physically on site.ISO 22000 clause the food safety team to describe each process step and the existing control measures applied at each step.This is the last step required prior to hazard analysis.

ISO 22000 clause 7.4.2 requires the food safety team to identify hazard and determine their acceptable levels. The next step is for the food safety team to assess each hazard identified then consider and select the control measures required to achieve the acceptable level of hazard.Each control measure needs to be reviewed by the food safety team with respect to its effectiveness against the identified food safety hazards and then categorized as to whether they need to be operational prerequisite programmes or included in the HACCP plan. Operational prerequisite programmes must be documented and include the food safety hazard to be controlled, the control measure, the monitoring procedures, corrections and corrective actions to be taken if out of control, the responsibilities and authorities and the records to be completed as defined in ISO 22000 clause 7.5.

The next step of implementing an ISO 22000 compliant system requires the food safety team to establish the HACCP plan. Standard CODEX HACCP principles, identification of critical control points, determination of critical limits for each critical control point, monitoring of critical control points and actions when monitoring results exceed critical limits are included in ISO 22000 clause 7.6. Verification is included in clause 7.8. The food safety hazard to be controlled at the critical control point, the control measure, the monitoring procedures, critical limits the records to be used, the corrections and corrective actions to be taken if out of control, and responsibilities and authorities are all required to be included in the HACCP plan. Clause 8.2 describes the requirement for validation of operational PRP and HACCP plan control measures and combinations. Documentation requirements are specified in ISO 22000 clause 4.2.

Product characteristics, intended use, flow diagrams, process steps and control measures should be updated when the HACCP plan and/or operational prerequisite programmes have been completed as per the requirements of ISO 22000 clause 7.7. The HACCP plan and/or prerequisite programmes documents may need to be amended after updating the preliminary information and this should be decided by the food safety team.ISO 22000 Clause 8.4.2 requires the food safety team review the results of verification activities, if verification does not demonstrate conformity a review of the conclusions of the hazard analysis, operational PRPs and the HACCP plan. The last requirement is that the food safety team are to evaluate the food safety management system at planned intervals and then consider the need to review the hazard analysis, operational prerequisite programmes and the HACCP plan as described in ISO 22000 Clause 8.5.2 Updating the food safety management system.