ISO 22000/FSSC 22000/BRC/SQF2000 – Food Safety

Food Safety Management System – requirements for any Organization in the Food Chain

The ISO 22000 family of quality management systems standards is designed to help organizations ensure that food safety is effectively controlled throughout the entire food chain. ISO22000 defines the fundamentals of food safety management systems, including the management principles upon which the family of standards is based. ISO 22001 deals with the requirements that organizations wishing to meet the standard must fulfill.

Food safety is linked to the presence of food-borne hazards in food at the point of consumption. Since food safety hazards can occur at any stage in the food chain it is essential that adequate control be in place. Therefore, a combined effort of all parties through the food chain is required.

The ISO 22000 international standard specifies the requirements for a food safety management system that involves the following elements:

  • interactive communication
  • system management
  • prerequisite programs
  • HACCP principles

Critical reviews of the above elements have been conducted by many scientists. Communication along the food chain is essential to ensure that all relevant food safety hazards are identified and adequately controlled at each step within the food chain. This implies communication between organizations both upstream and downstream in the food chain. Communication with customers and suppliers about identified hazards and control measures will assist in clarifying customer and supplier requirements.

Recognition of the organization’s role and position within the food chain is essential to ensure effective interactive communication throughout the chain in order to deliver safe food products to the final consumer.

The most effective food safety systems are established, operated and updated within the framework of a structured management system and incorporated into the overall management activities of the organization. This provides maximum benefit for the organization and interested parties. ISO 22000 was aligned with ISO 9001:2000 in order to enhance the compatibility of the two standards. It is expected that the next revision will be aligned with the 2015 version.

The ISO 22000 standards include:

ISO 22000 – Food safety management systems – Requirements for any organization in the food chain
ISO 22001 – Guidelines on the application of ISO 9001:2000 for the food and drink industry (replaces: ISO 15161:2001)
ISO/TS 22002- Prerequisite programmes on food safety—Part 1: Food manufacturing
ISO TS 22003 – Food safety management systems for bodies providing audit and certification of food safety management systems.
ISO TS 22004 – Food safety management systems – Guidance on the application of ISO 22000:2005.
ISO 22005 – Traceability in the feed and food chain – General principles and basic requirements for system design and implementation.
ISO 22006 – Quality management systems – Guidance on the application of ISO 9002:2000 for crop production.
ISO 22000 is also used in the Food Safety Systems Certification (FSSC) Scheme FS22000. FS22000 is a Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) approved scheme.

The FSSC 22000 Food Safety System Certification provides a framework for effectively managing your organization’sfood safety responsibilities. FSSC 22000 is fully recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) and is based on existing ISO Standards. It demonstrates your company has a robust Food Safety Management System in place that meets the requirements of your customers and consumers. Already, 10.000+ organizations over 140 countries achieved FSSC 22000 certification. With currently 100+ Licensed Certification Bodies and over 1,500 auditors worldwide, our mission is to ensure consumer trust in the supply of safe food and drinks.

The British Retail Consortium (or BRC) is one of the leading trade associations in the United Kingdom. They represent all forms of retailers from small, independently owned stores, to big chain stores and department stores. It represents 80% of retail trade in the UK by turnover.

The British Retail Consortium was formed in January 1992 when the British Retailers’ Association and the Retail Consortium merged. In 1998 it produced the first edition of the BRC Food Technical Standard and Protocol for food suppliers. This has been widely adopted not just throughout the UK but around the world. It campaigns for the retail industry and is the authoritative voice of retail, recognised for its powerful campaigning and influence within government and as a provider of in-depth retail information. In addition, the BRC produce standards that manufacturers have to comply with, in different product areas, such as food, packaging and consumer products. Companies exporting to the UK have to reach the BRC’s standards to be certified via their own inspectors. Companies supplying supermarkets with own label food products often have to comply with the BRCstandards: they are an industry-wide benchmark for quality and food safety.

SQF 2000 (HACCP)

Today’s consumers are more educated about the food they’re providing their families and requiring more information about food quality. One link in the food chain does not get rattled without it affecting the next link. Customers expect more from their retailers and food service providers, who in turn expect more from their suppliers.

Heightened consumer demand for increased food safety assurances moves down the chain with retailers and serviceproviders asking suppliers to provide verifiable proof that robust food safety control systems have been effectively implemented. These systems must have been properly validated and show evidence of continuous monitoring procedures. This is where the Safe Quality Food (SQF) Program comes in.

  • SQF is recognized by retailers and foodservice providers around the world who require a rigorous, credible food safety management system.
  • Using the SQF certification program will help reduce assessment inconsistencies and costs of multiple assessment standards.
  • The SQF Program is recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) and links primary production certification to food manufacturing, distribution and agent/broker management certification.
  • Administered by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), SQF benefits from continual retailer feedback about consumer concerns. These benefits are passed on to SQF certified suppliers, keeping them a step ahead of their competitors.
  • SQF is the only scheme to integrate a quality component as well as food safety.

The SQF 2000 code offers a solution for primary producers, manufacturers, distributors, and brokers by creating one standard for food safety from farm to fork. Also, by requiring both regulatory and customer compliance, the SQF codeis equipped for an ever evolving market.

In addition to the SQF code, SQFI standards have expanded to include an ethical sourcing code and management system, as well as a joint program with the American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) that promotes safe animal feed and food production.