Overview of H.A.C.C.P. Compliancy
H.A.C.C.P. (Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points) is a preventive management system that identifies and controls potential food safety hazards. These principles were designed to analyze and regulate physical, biological, and chemical hazards that may arise from the production, handling, and distribution of consumable products.
Is H.A.C.C.P. Mandatory?
H.A.C.C.P. is mandatory by law for the following food manufacturers:
Meat & Poultry (Regulated by the U.S.D.A.)
Juice (Regulated by the F.D.A.)
Seafood (Regulated by the F.D.A.)
While other food plants are not required to abide by H.A.C.C.P. principles, they are required to have their own written preventative standards that may use H.A.C.C.P. concepts. However, it is highly encouraged that all food manufacturers, distributors, and retail stores follow H.A.C.C.P. principles to prevent illness and injury to their employees and consumers.
The 7 Principles of H.A.C.C.P.
There are seven standard principles of H.A.C.C.P.; these principles are included in the ISO 22000:2005 developed by the International Organization for Standardization for food safety regulation. When developing an H.A.C.C.P. plan, it is recommended that individuals within the company work with external H.A.C.C.P. experts to apply these seven principles to the manufacturing, processing, sanitary, and uniform needs of their employees.
Principles as defined by the National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (N.A.C.M.C.F.):
- Conduct a Hazard Analysis: Determine the potential food safety hazards (physical, biological, chemical) that may arise during all stages of food production and distribution.
- Find the Critical Control Points: A Critical Control Point (C.C.P.) is the individual step that must be taken so food safety hazards are eliminated or reduced.
- Establish Critical Limits for Each Critical Control Point: The critical limit is the measurable limit to which the food safety hazard can be controlled, such as temperature, pH level, or humidity.
- Establish Critical Control Point Monitoring Requirements: A monitoring procedure should be in place at each C.C.P. with an employee responsible for measuring the critical limit.
- Establish Corrective Actions: These are the actions that must proceed if any deviation from the critical limit occurs.
- Establish Procedures for Verifying the H.A.C.C.P. System Is Working as Intended: Verification and validation of an H.A.C.C.P. plan outside of the established C.C.P. monitoring requirements is necessary to determine the success of the plan. This may include external auditing, product testing, and record reviews.
- Establish Record Keeping Procedures: All plants are required to maintain regular documenting and monitoring of C.C.P.s, audits and verification of daily H.A.C.C.P. compliancy. Documents should also include the company’s H.A.C.C.P. plan and all other pertinent information.
Employee Hygiene, Uniforms, and H.A.C.C.P. Compliancy
The inherent nature of an H.A.C.C.P. system is preventative action on all levels of a company’s food production. This includes quantifiable approaches to an employee’s work uniform and hygiene. Cross contamination is one of the leading causes of food poisoning, and can occur when bacteria on skin and on soiled garments are transferred onto food. Employees who work with food must be held to the highest standards of hygiene and their employers should maintain this principle by providing H.A.C.C.P. compliant work uniforms.
These uniform guidelines should be followed for H.A.C.C.P. compliancy:
- All garments should be cleaned and sanitized before the start of each shift.
- Garments should be changed whenever contamination has occurred.
- Employees should not wear their uniforms outside of their stations.
- Only disposable gloves and tissues should be used.
- Jewelry should not be worn.
- Damaged garments should not be worn.
- Uniforms should not have pockets above the waist or buttons.
- Employees should be trained on a regular basis on food safety and hygiene.
- Only use reputable uniform suppliers that understand H.A.C.C.P. guidelines.
Protect Your Product: How Prudential Uniforms Helps
When looking for a uniform supplier, businesses should require more than clean garments. The garment experts at Prudential Uniforms specialize in H.A.C.C.P. compliant uniform rental, purchasing, and laundering services, meaning you have one less C.C.P. to worry about.
Prudential’s comprehensive approach to H.A.C.C.P. work wear limits the transfer of microorganisms onto food products and work stations while increasing employee safety and health in the workplace.
Overview of services:
- Specialized H.A.C.C.P. Uniform Design: Traditional uniform designs and materials often have issues with sanitization and durability. Materials such as vinyl and other plastics often become brittle after continual washes and will contaminate food once they start to decompose. Uniforms that include pockets and excessive buttons are also potential sources of bacteria and contamination. At Prudential, we design our garments specifically for the food processing industry. Our garments are made from 100% spun-polyester or other fabrics that possess anti-microbial protection and can sustain long-term wear, even with wash after wash.
- Hygienic Laundering: A Certified Clean Green laundry provider by the Textile Rental Services Association, Prudential efficiently sanitizes garments through a multi-step cleaning process. The solution for each garment will be tailored based on its materials and soil type.
- Verifiable Processing: Prudential provides documentation of all services for record keeping purposes.
- Deliveries and Transportation: As a full service laundering facility, Prudential not only delivers clean garments, but provides regular pick-ups as well. All soiled garments are transported in H.A.C.C.P. approved containers. Clean garments are processed under customer requirements and can be poly wrapped.
- H.A.C.C.P. Accessories and Clean Room Supplies: Besides garments, Prudential offers a full line of H.A.C.C.P. sanitization and safety products, including: hand sanitizers, anti-bacterial hand-wash, towel dispensers, can liners, microfiber towels, mobs, dusters, and floor mats.
- Custom Programs: Prudential services and program plans are fully customizable to the unique prerequisites of your business.
- H.A.C.C.P. Staff at Your Service: An H.A.C.C.P. representative will work with you to create a plan that meet your food safety requirements, and addresses your uniform needs.
Protecting your product and your customers by following the principles outlined by an H.A.C.C.P. system. However, for many companies, the involved nature of an H.A.C.C.P. program may leave them feeling overwhelmed or susceptible to negligence. If a food processing facility relies on a trusted supplier, such as Prudential Uniforms, they alleviate the pressure of a critical control point while receiving an essential part of a well-managed H.A.C.C.P. program.