The HACCP system aims to spot biological, chemical, or physical hazards present in food production. When preparing and processing food, some natural hazards could be present in the form of insects or filth. Other hazards could be unintentional like the
presence of hair or mislabeling of ingredients. Higher risk hazards can include intentional adulteration or contamination of products by not adhering to regulatory food standards.
Food production safety should be the topmost priority for food manufacturers. Here are the 5 prerequisites to developing a good HACCP plan:
After following the five prerequisite steps, it is important to follow a set of core principles when applying your HACCP Plan.
Principle #1: Conduct A Hazard Analysis
An effective hazard analysis involves listing down the steps in the production process and identify the hazards associated with each task performed. Afterwards, the HACCP team should assess the severity, significance, and frequency of the risk and set
preventive measures. Browse this page to learn how to perform a systematic risk assessment.
Principle #2: Determine the CCPs
A Critical Control Point or CCP is a step in the production process where you have the opportunity to prevent, mitigate, or completely eliminate a food safety hazard (e.g. receiving products, food preparation and handling, cooking, reheating, transportation,
Principle #3: Establish Critical Limits of CCPs
A critical limit is the minimum/ maximum value for the control measure at a CCP to prevent, eliminate, or reduce the occurence of a hazard. It separates safe and acceptable products from the unsafe and unacceptable. Examples include measuring time, temperature,
pH levels, water activity, weight, and other measures based on regulatory standards.
Principle #4: Setup Monitoring System
Monitoring CCPs on a regular basis helps keep track of the operation to determine if there’s a deviation from the CCP or a loss of control. Monitored CCPs can provide data for proper documentation to help establish corrective actions.
Principle #5: Establish Corrective Actions
Corrective actions must be in place when preventive measures are not sufficient to meet the goals of the plan. Corrective actions are followed when there is a deviation from a critical limit. HACCP team should identify the problem and cause of non-conformance,
and the disposition of the hazardous product. Make sure that corrective actions are recorded and properly documented.
Principle #6: Verify the HACCP Plan
Verifying a HACCP plan should not be limited to just monitoring of the operation, you must validate if the HACCP system is operating according to the intended course of action. Examples of verification activities include product testing, consulting experts,
in-plant observations, instrument calibration, and log reviews.
Principle #7: Establish Documentation
A detailed HACCP plan record serves as strong evidence that the manufactured food is safe and has undergone critical procedures to cover all possible risks. All records should contain complete information of the 5 prerequisites and 7 principles.