Food producers in need of global safety certifications

As the world becomes more and more a global village and developing countries get opportunities to market products especially food beyond their borders, getting international food safety certifications has become very important.

According to the resources provided by Food Safety Training Tools, FSSC 22000 is a certification scheme for food processors and food packaging manufacturers. A producer is required to design, document and implement a food safety management system based on the FSSC 22000 requirements to obtain the certification.

Achieving of these international standards – ISO 22000 and FSSC 22000 by a company assure customers that the producer has implemented an effective food safety plan and management system. The types of companies that can register to FSSC 22000 include those that process the following

•Perishable animal products

•perishable vegetal products

•processed foods and products with long shelf life at ambient temperature (bio)chemical manufacturing;• pet food and •food packaging manufacturing

The International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) developed a Food Safety Management System based on the globally accepted Quality Management System, ISO 9001. The Food Safety Management System standard is ISO 22000. The standard is applicable to any company in the food industry, from farmers, manufacturers and transporters to packagers and retailers. ISO 22000 registration is recognised worldwide, and the operators attest to the fact that it is growing in popularity with the number of registrations doubling in the last one year.

Food Safety System Certification (FSSC) 22000 is an ISO 22000 and PAS 220 based certification scheme for food manufacturers. It includes both the requirements for a Food Safety Management System found in ISO 22000 and the requirements for prerequisite programmes found in the Publicly Available Standard (PAS) 220. The PAS 220 requirements have also been published in an ISO Technical Specification ISO/TS 22002-1:2009.

The FSSC 22000 Certification scheme requirements are found in ISO 22000, ISO/TS 22002-1 and FSSC 22000 document “Part I Requirements for organisations that require certification”. To prepare for certification, the company is required to meet the requirements in all three of these documents. Trainings are available on how organisations can meet these standards to obtain the certifications before applying.

There are companies in Nigeria that have achieved these standards. One of such is Teragro Commodities Limited, the agribusiness subsidiary of Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc (Transcorp). The firm, the operator of the first-of-its-kind fruit juice concentrate plant in Nigeria has received the ISO:9001:2008 (Quality Management System – QMS), FSSC 22000:2005 and FSSC 22000 (Food Safety Management System – FSMS), ISO 22000: 2005 and TS/ISO 22002-1 2009 certifications for its world-class fruit juice concentrates and purees from National Quality Assurance (NQA), UK. These certifications, recognised by Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) indicate that Teragro products are produced to international standards.

Read full article here