How to Build a Culture of Food Safety in a Risk- Based Supply Chain Environment?

Monday, February 4, 2019 14:40 - 15:15

The Food manufacturing industry has been enhancing programs and requirements for the Supply Chain, to guarantee that the products manufactured are safe for consumers. The regulatory environment has created stronger awareness through strict regulations: Food safety Modernization Act (FSMA) in the US, stricter regulations on the EU, Safe Food Australia among others. In this tough environment, a culture of behaviors with a risk management approach for Food safety, is the path that the industry is taking.

 This model consists of a comprehensive approach to manage direct risks within the process as well as the indirect risks due to inadequate cleaning & sanitation programs, traffic management, GMPs. Environmental Microbiological Monitoring has become a much more relevant tool to assess hidden risks in the facilities, with the mindset of Seek & Destroy.

Safe Food Manufacturing has evolved to manage hazards and/or eliminate them through a risk-based strategy.   The Global regulatory environment has developed new to a more holistic analysis of risks and how they are to be managed and / or eliminated.  In the US, the Food Safety Modernization Act opened the doors to a broader overview on how to guarantee consistent Food safety on every product manufactured. Compliance requires an in-depth analysis of direct food safety risks, such as kill step for microbiological hazards, allergen management for chemical hazards, and foreign material controls, for physical hazards. Indirect risks have also become very relevant such as adequate cleaning, sanitation programs, Environmental Microbiological Monitoring programs.

How to build a culture of Food Safety in a risk-based Supply Chain environment?  It is critical to enhance understanding of critical risks and provide the tools for the employees to own the responsibility of delivering safe foods for the consumers.

Dr Liliana Casal-Wardle, Senior Manager Food safety and Quality Latin America, The Hershey Company