Do you want to apply for health approval? To do so, you need to draw up a Food Safety Management System (FSMS). What are we talking about? How do you implement it? What documents are required?
To fully understand the elements required for your activity and the right implementation of FSMS, we interviewed Youssef NOHRA, HSEQ Specialist. (See also: Expert Review about the HACCP Plan).
What is the Food Safety Management System (FSMS)?
The Food Safety Management System aims to maintain food safety and hygiene, guarantee safety in the food production chain and protect the safety and health of consumers.
The goal is to prevent risks linked to biological, chemical or physical hazards. Therefore, FSMS will be based on several elements, justifying the implementation of concrete actions, in order to control these types of risks.
Is FSMS mandatory?
It is mandatory for all manufacturers that prepare and/or distribute foodstuffs and wish to apply for health approval.
FSMS is also required by European regulations through the “Hygiene Package”. As a reminder, the Hygiene Package comprises six texts, including Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 (the “Food Law“) and Regulation (EC) No 852/2004.
How is an FSMS implemented?
Here are the elements for drawing up an FSMS:
Mastering the best hygiene practices:
It is all about assembling all the documents related to best hygiene practices, whether they are general or specific hygiene practices. These may include cleaning/disinfection plans, dress code, control of materials when receiving and shipping, or pest control plans.
Once the best hygiene practices are clearly defined the HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) Plan can be established.
The HACCP Plan:
The HACCP Plan is a tool for hazard/risk assessment, with the aim to protect the health and safety of consumers by controlling the risks and hazards.
The HACCP team must be multidisciplinary to carefully monitor and adapt the HACCP plan whenever necessary (e.g. recipe changes, new processes, consumer expectations, etc.). The HACCP plan can also evolve through time to avoid any unfortunate events.
Nonconformity and traceability management:
This part is about specifying the implemented measures for traceability and the management of non-conformities. To achieve this, you should make sure that all the information is rightfully and efficiently transmitted (even automatically), and quickly analysed and processed.
A procedure for managing non-conforming products must be set up to deal with any malfunctions in an appropriate manner.
The expert’s conclusion
The Food Safety Management System puts together documents often in the form of Excel files which are shared between the different users.
This process is time-consuming and can be a source of error due to multiple manual entries and deletion of files in the database, or sometimes the usage of the wrong or old version of the document.
To overcome these difficulties, rely on digital technology!
An online solution will centralise your information (EDM). You will be able to consult the regulations in force and manage a global action plan in an operational manner. You will be directly alerted in case of any deviation from the action plan. It’s ensuring a gain in efficiency and responsiveness which are essential in the context of health risks in the food industry.
BlueKanGo supports companies in the digitisation, optimisation and innovation of existing processes and in meeting new needs. Our customers in the food industry appreciate the many applications as well as the FSMS, also food fraud management, certification preparation, audit management, and supplier evaluations…