Food Safety Risk Assessment - 7 Simple Steps
Even though it has been several years since The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) was signed into law, the Act still confuses a myriad of food and feed processors. Why? Because one of the continuing gray areas is that compliance with the FSMA is a separate duty from creating a Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP). HACCP is a management system in which food safety is addressed through the analysis and control of biological, chemical, and physical hazards from raw material production, procurement and handling, to manufacturing, distribution and consumption of the finished product.
Remember, the HACCP itself doesn’t cover the requirements of the FSMA. Some food product types require HACCP. Therefore, it’s critical that you verify your need for generating a HACCP.
The FSMA requires that the owner/operator of a food or feed processing facility evaluate the hazards that could influence food/feed. It’s imperative to implement controls to drastically minimize or prevent the occurrence of these hazards. Executing a written hazard analysis or risk assessment to comply with the law is absolutely necessary. Below you’ll find a recommended approach you can utilize to help you get started.
- Create a team
The best team will be comprised of people from different departments within your company. Bring individuals with different areas of expertise together to tackle important issues. Ultimately, the team decides which hazards or risks are on the list.
- Name hazards
List all reasonably foreseeable hazards in column 1. Complete column 1 before moving on to column 2.
- Determine preventive controls
Once you’ve recorded the hazards in column 1, list the corresponding preventive controls in column 2. Preventive controls are written company policies or procedures that significantly reduce or prevent hazards. If there isn’t a specific preventive control in place for a particular hazard, the team should identify the preventive control that should be implemented.
- Identify monitoring
In column 3, list the monitoring procedure(s) for each preventive control. Monitoring procedures should be in writing and include method, responsibility and frequency. If monitoring isn’t in place for a specific preventive control, the team should identify what monitoring procedure should be developed and implemented.
- Establish corrective action
Written corrective actions help ensure appropriate action is taken when preventive controls are not properly implemented or are found to be ineffective. In column 4, list the applicable corrective action. If no corrective action(s) are in place, the team should identify a specific corrective action.
In column 5, list the verification or validation of preventive controls and monitoring. If there’s no verification or validation currently being performed, the team must develop the necessary steps.
- Identify the record-keeping
In column 6, list the record-keeping method that will be performed for each hazard. Your facility must maintain (for a minimum of 2 years) records documenting the following:
- The monitoring of preventive controls
- Instances of non-conformance related to food safety
- The results of testing and other appropriate means of verification
- Instances when corrective actions were implemented and the efficacy of preventive controls and corrective actions.
Your food safety risk assessment plan is a working document that must be reviewed annually (at a minimum) to ensure no new hazards have arisen at your facility. During the review process, team members should gather to evaluate present hazards. When a new hazard is identified, your risk assessment plan should be updated.
Take an Additional Step – Contact Kapnick for Solid Insurance Solutions.
So, you’ve measured your risks, but have you truly done enough? Does your business have sufficient insurance coverage to protect your company in the event something does happen? Your knowledgeable and trusted Kapnick Insurance Representative can help determine the ideal coverage for your business. Contact Kapnick today.