HACCP, PRP, Mimimum Legal Requirements – how does the puzzle fit together?

BY Angela Jordan

Sometimes it’s best to get back to basics.  When meeting different people in many different areas of food manufacturing, from the corner cafe to the large retailer manufacturer, one often notes that people do not know how HACCP, PRP system and the minimum legal requirements fit together.  HACCP seems to be a very loosely used term, with many not actually understanding where the puzzle pieces fit.


Think of your food safety system as a house, with a foundation, bricks and a roof on top.  Firstly you will need a good foundation before you can consider starting with the brickwork.  The foundation of food safety is R962 (the old R918).  This regulation is what the municipality utilise to issue a Certificate of Acceptability to your premises.  This is a legal requirement and every premises that sells food, needs to have a valid certificate in order to operate legally.  These are quite basic requirements, which cover pest control, personal hygiene, structural requirements, transporting your goods and storage of your goods. 


If you are wanting to supply a retailer or your customers demands it, one will then implement a system that builds the bricks of our building.  These bricks are customised, documented systems that record food safety before, during and after manufacturing.  The bricks could include allergen management, traceability, maintenance, auditing, cleaning, corrective action, food defence, process control, receiving and distribution, storage, control of non conforming product, purchasing and sample retention, to name a few.  Guidance on what should be contained in our bricks (or PRP system) can be found in SANS 10049, GFSI vs6 or additional retailer requirements or your chosen HACCP system requirements.  One should ideally run with this system for at least six months before thinking of putting the roof on our building.  This is needed so that any kinks can be ironed out the system and that the system can become entrenched in the business, which would need to include staff coaching and mentoring.


Now we can start thinking of putting the roof on top, which is our HACCP system.  This is not a one man job but a team effort.  Your HACCP system would include a dedicated HACCP team, detailed product descriptions, process flows, hazard analysis and our possible CCP’s (which are the critical points in our manufacturing process that reduce or eliminate the hazards that we cannot control with our PRP system), our CCP monitoring and corrective action needed should our CCP deviate.  The principles for HACCP are guided  by SANS 10330, ISO 22000, GFSI or many other international HACCP systems (which you use depends on what HACCP system you are putting in place).

 May 05, 2014
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Food Safety
Angela Jordan

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