12 Jan 2023

HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points) is an internationally recognised risk-based system utilised throughout the food supply chain

HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points) is an internationally recognised risk-based system utilised throughout the food supply chain to ensure the prevention, elimination, or reduction of significant hazards to acceptable levels.

The concept of HACCP relies on understanding the potential biological, physical, and chemical food safety hazards that could occur during each step of the food manufacturing and food packaging process and how an establishment can prevent or control the hazard before it reached a critical level and potentially create an unsafe food product. Verification is the principle which confirms that the HACCP plan, if followed, will produce safe food for the final consumer.

In simple terms, “are we doing it?” For instance, a typical example of verification is when the Critical Control Points (CCP) monitoring log is reviewed at the end of the day – all the monitoring activities conducted for the day are reviewed, all at once.

Why is HACCP verification important to food facilities?

Verification is one of the most important and complicated of the seven Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) principles. Verification procedures are vital in ensuring everything you’ve implemented so far in your food safety plan is correct and leads to producing safe food.

To have a sound HACCP plan in place, you must ensure that the plan is adequate for controlling food safety hazards. You achieve this assurance through verification and validation. But you can’t validate that it’s working until you verify that your team is consistently following the plan.

Common verification activities in a food plant

There are many common verification activities that should take place in any food manufacturing facility. Some of these are:

  • Food safety plan review
  • Facility walk-through
  • Verification of the company’s prerequisite programs (PRPS) such as sanitation, allergen controls, traceability, and many others
  • Food safety document review
  • Environmental monitoring and product testing
  • Regulatory and third-party audits
  • Confirmation that the CCPs, HACCP plan, and other preventive controls are implemented and effective

Who should have a HACCP verification audit?

  • Sites looking to verify their existing HACCP Plan to the local regulatory authority
  • Sites looking to have their existing HACCP Plan verified through an established checklist specifically geared toward technical requirements of a HACCP Programme through a 2nd party auditing service
  • Sites looking to fulfill specific client/customer requirements as part of their product specifications

What is the audit process?

  • a HACCP Verification Audit evaluates the adequacy of documentation, compliance to documented procedures, effectiveness of these procedures to control the process within defined limits, and the ability to implement corrective and preventive action plans.
  • Our highly trained Food Safety Auditors will verify the established HACCP plan and pre-requisite programmes are operating in accordance with site policy and are aligned with the recognised HACCP principles. The auditor will review HACCP documents, Pre-Requisite support programmes, confirm product flow hazards and good manufacturing practices through facility walkthrough, and verify HACCP Team understanding through employee interviews.