The Importance of HACCP in Food Safety Training
Implementing successful HACCP based systems to each step of the food production process allows food workers to ensure that the food they are producing is of the highest standard. Completing the necessary level of food safety training ensures food remains safe for the consumer, as it's the highest priority for any persons working in a food establishment. Consumers put their trust in food businesses to ensure that the food they are consuming is wholesome and safe to eat. Whether the food being produced is in manufacturing, retail or catering industries; it is essential that food is protected from the four main food hazard categories, which are microbiological, chemical, physical or allergenic.
What is HACCP?
HACCP stands for Hazard, Analysis, Critical, Control, Point and is a food safety management system which is internationally recognised as a programme that analyses each step of the food production process. Before the 1960s, food would be tested at the end of production. Dangerously, this meant that any hazards in the food wouldn't be identified until it has reached the consumer. HACCP was created to ensure that food being produced is safe from hazards throughout the whole production and handling processes before it reaches the end user.
Why is HACCP so important in the food industry?
Food that contains hazards, such as pathogens, can lead to severe illness or in some cases, fatalities to members of the public who are consuming the food. Some vulnerable groups, such as the elderly, infants and pregnant women, are easily susceptible to food hazards, and this can cause a negative impact on their health. Implementing successful HACCP systems to your food business can eliminate hazards and prevent these cases from happening.
Apart from ensuring the safety of the consumer, HACCP can also help to protect your business by ensuring that the food you produce will always be of the highest quality.
What are the main principles of HACCP?
HACCP has seven basic principles, which are detailed below:
- Principle 1 - Conduct a Hazard Analysis
- Principle 2 - Identify the Critical Control Points
- Principle 3 - Establish Critical Limits
- Principle 4 - Monitor CCPs
- Principle 5 - Establish Corrective Actions
- Principle 6 - Verification
- Principle 7 - Recordkeeping
HACCP follows a scientific and systematic approach to its processes. Analysing each principle of HACCP allows the food worker to ensure that each step of the food production process is controlled and ready with preventative actions. Breaking down each step of the production process can guarantee that during each stage, hazards are continuously identified, controlled and regulated.
What is a hazard?
his article previously mentioned the four main food safety hazards, microbiological, chemical, physical or allergenic. But gaining a deeper understanding of what a hazard is and how they can be prevented plays a large role within HACCP.
A hazard is a matter that can cause harm to the health of the consumer. The risk of hazards during the food production process is high and usually, results in contamination or cross-contamination of products. For example, this could be the contamination of cooked meats from raw materials. Something as simple as this can cause the food to become hazardous to the health of the consumer. Allergens are also regarded as a hazardous substance to those vulnerable with allergies. Within HACCP, preventing the contamination and cross-contamination of hazardous substances of foods is essential. Even the smallest hazard can cause an astronomical impact on the life of a consumer.
What are the benefits of implementing HACCP into a food business?
There are considerable benefits and advantages to implanting HACCP systems to food operations. HACCP gives the food worker the tools they need to reduce any risks to food.
Not only is HACCP a proactive system that allows corrective actions to be taken during the food production or sale process, but it also builds customer confidence with a food business or establishment, allowing consumers to recognise the steps that businesses take to ensure that their products are always safe to eat. This demonstrates commitment from management to protect the consumer's health.
Successfully implementing HACCP systems can also be cost-effective for a food business. Ensuring that the product is safe, results in less recalls and food wastage. It can also contribute to the focusing of resources of personnel, time and finances into areas of the business that ensures the safety of food products.
HACCP Training Courses
- Work towards compliance with UK & EU Food Safety and Hygiene Legislation
- Accepted by Local Authorities
- Unlimited resits at no cost
- Instant certificate