When you think about the greatest threat to your food company’s profitability, your mind might automatically jump to nuances like employee turnover, inflating overhead costs or mismanaged advertising campaigns. Would you be surprised to know that a single failure in your food safety program could actually be the most devastating profitability factor of all?
According to USDA records, more than 20 million pounds of meat were recalled last year, and the U.S. government is expected to issue new food safety guidelines after a recent spike in meat and poultry recalls due to product contamination. These headlines reveal the alarming rate at which food companies are still experiencing costly recalls, even amid modernized food safety regulation and heightened oversight. These statistics are a strong reminder of the importance of following preventive food safety guidelines and taking a proactive rather than reactive approach to contamination challenges.
Use this checklist to help avoid Tens of Millions in damage costs, severe brand equity loss, and unexpected food audits.
Food safety as a discipline is highly complex, and it can become especially complicated for manufacturers as they struggle to address evolving regulations and shifting industry realities. In the midst of this confusion and the wake of FSMA rollout, many food safety-related terms are tossed around. Unfortunately, not all of them are clearly understood or correctly represented by the people using them. Today we’re going to dissect two of these particular concepts – HACCP and a Food Safety Plan – and explain exactly what makes them different.
Food Safety Magazine just released its annual article tallying the previous year’s food-related recalls announced by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service. 2018’s count amounted to 382 food product recalls, including some products that were recalled more than once. From undeclared allergens to bacterial contamination and more, last year saw a seemingly continuous stream of supply chain hazards that resulted in foodborne illness outbreaks, voluntary company recalls and the FDA’s first-ever mandatory food recall. What do these numbers reveal about the efficacy of the industry’s food safety programs? And what risk-prone mistakes might your company be making right now?
When you think about the food safety requirements that manufacturers must meet to stay compliant with government regulations, your thoughts may go directly to the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and the newest FDA rollouts of prevention-based mandates. You’d certainly be focusing your attention on the right concerns. But if you apply a broader perspective in the arena of FDA, USDA and CFIA regulations, you’ll find that most of the food safety requirements your organization is obligated to fulfill are grounded in the time-tested principles of HACCP. Ultimately, having a food safety program that’s based on the HACCP approach is fundamental to reducing risk, improving food quality and protecting profitability.