Food safety is a worldwide issue. It becomes important when there is a peer pressure from consumers, retailers, social groups, and legislative bodies affecting the whole food supply chain.
The International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) published in September 2005 the standard ISO22000 - Food Safety Management Systems - Requirements for any organization in the food chain.
There has been a continuous increase in consumer demand for safe food. This has led to the development of various food safety standards. The growing number of national standards has led to confusion. Consequently, there is a need for international harmonization and ISO aims to meet this need with ISO 22000:
The standard is complimentary to ISO9001, in that ISO 22000 addresses specifically the issues relating to food safety and uses an approach that can be integrated with that of ISO 9001. ISO 22000 is not a replacement for ISO 9001, however businesses in the food sector may see it as having greater commercial importance to their business than ISO 9001, particularly as there is increasing pressure on the food industry to demonstrate that it is effectively managing food safety, following the highly publicized food scares around the world.
Specifies the requirements for a food safety management system where an organization in the food chain needs to demonstrate its ability to control food safety hazards in order to ensure that food is safe at the time of human consumption is applicable to all organizations, regardless of size which are involved in any aspect of the food chain and want to implement systems that consistently provide safe products. The means of meeting any requirements of this international standard can be accomplished through the use of internal and/or external resources.
The primary sector - animal and game farming; arable farming; fruit and vegetable farming, and market gardening
The processing sector - feed producers, primary food producers, food manufacturers, secondary food manufacturers
The storage, catering and sales functions - wholesalers, retailers, food service operators and caterers
The standard specifies a number of key requirements, including Planning, implementing, maintaining and updating a food safety management system Identification of hazards and determination of risks to food safety using HACCP principles Compliance with applicable food safety related regulatory requirements Development and implementation of pre-requisite programmes and/or HACCP plans as a way of controlling food safety hazards
Continual improvement and updating of the food safety management system Interactive communication with interested parties (enforcement agencies, customers, suppliers, consumers) on food safety issues