Now, more than ever, all food chain stakeholders are required to demonstrate their commitment to food safety and food quality. Recent food-related events over the past few years have led regulatory bodies like the FDA to examine not only their internal processes but also set forth standards and initiatives to make the food production process safer as well as to ensure product quality and process improvement. The leading methods for demonstrating safety and quality in the food chain are to implement HACCP, ISO 22000 and GFSI benchmarked schemes such as SQF, BRC, and IFS food safety processes into a Food Safety Management System. HACCP involves identifying hazards within the Food Safety Management System and controlling them through prerequisite programs (PRPs) and/or Critical Control Points (CCPs) in the food production and preparation process. ISO 22000 guides the HACCP process and incorporates it into its standard, and SQF incorporates both HACCP and ISO processes into its certification standard. Both the BRC and IFS standards incorporate HACCP into their requirements.
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Food chain stakeholders are faced with many challenges including quality of the products, continuous improvement, compliance with regulatory bodies, and quality that spans the entire enterprise and supply chain. EtQ's Food Safety Management Software helps maintain quality to these initiatives, while providing a flexible workflow platform to adapt to changing business processes, without programming.
EtQ's Food Safety Management Software Capabilities include:
- Manage and track Prerequisite Programs (PRP), with workflow-enabled revision control
- Link PRPs to Document Control, Audits, Corrective Actions, Deviations, and more
- Conduct HACCP processes using Decision trees or quantitative Risk Assessment tools
- Link Hazard Analysis to PRPs or Critical Control Points (CCP)
- Manage and track all CCPs with links to Inspection and Monitoring and CAPA workflows
- Automatically generate Corrective Actions from CCP results
- Automated Project Control to manage HACCP Plans, ISO 22000, SQF, BRC, and IFS
- Document Control linked to Employee Training module to ensure employees are properly trained
- Audit Management module handles verification of HACCP Plans, ISO 22000, SQF, BRC, and IFS
- Calibration Maintenance module linked to HACCP Plans to ensure proper equipment maintenance
- Action Supplier Management: Collaborate on Quality and Safety events down the supply chain
- Total solution for ISO 22000, and GFSI benchmarked schemes HACCP, ISO 22000, SQF, BRC, and IFS
Challenges Facing the Food and Beverage Industry
Competition in Food and Beverage
Food chain stakeholders are challenged to stay competitive in a dynamic and demanding market. Companies that can provide the greatest level of safety by producing high-quality products while at the same time increasing efficiency and performance across the enterprise have the greatest ability to rise above the competition. To do this, an increasing number of companies are implementing HACCP, ISO 22000, SQF, BRC, and IFS into their work processes. EtQ provides a Food Safety Management System with a robust set of modules, such as Document Control and Monitoring and Inspection, to help automate business processes and ensure compliance with food safety initiatives.
Food Safety through HACCP, ISO 22000, SQF, BRC, and IFS
HACCP, ISO 22000, SQF, BRC, and IFS processes were implemented to incorporate safety into each step of food and beverage production in order to prevent safety issues from arising - serving as proactive safety measures in the food chain.
Safety in food is a top priority in manufacturing, and HACCP, ISO 22000, SQF, BRC, and IFS processes help an organization ensure that this is the case in all food and beverage production. EtQ will help to ensure that your system is in compliance with these initiatives, and with modules such as Document Control and Risk Assessment, will automate all procedures across your enterprise while incorporating safety and quality into every step of the process. This unified process for handling food safety and food quality issues results in an efficient system, where no time is lost and no problem overlooked - ensuring safety from farm to fork.
Increasing Food Safety and Food Quality down the Supply Chain
More and more food chain stakeholders are relying on multiple suppliers to provide them with the components necessary to produce their food and beverage products, therefore, the ability to create visibility down the supply chain and provide traceability into supplier quality and supplier safety is key to maintaining compliance with food safety standards such as HACCP, ISO 22000, SQF, BRC, and IFS. EtQ's Food Safety Management Software with Supplier Quality Management and Inspection allows an organization to incorporate their suppliers directly into their business processes, enabling suppliers to be involved in related quality and safety events within the organization's system. Automated supplier rating systems enable organizations to review and select the best suppliers and reject noncompliant suppliers. Similarly, suppliers can review their rating and take action to improve compliance and become a preferred vendor for the organization.
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Business System Integration
As more and more business systems are implemented in a food and beverage organization, the ability to communicate between these systems becomes difficult. As a result, crucial processes are disjointed and often rely on manual "jumping" between systems, which can lead to inefficiencies in the process. EtQ's Food Safety Management Software features a robust integration layer that allows for information to be passed to and from external systems, widening the scope of the quality process to include ERP, MRP, MES and other business systems.
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By automating each step in the process through the use of a Food Safety Management System, food chain stakeholders can remain confident that their processes are compliant and that each step in the process is closely monitored to ensure that operational risks are kept under control. EtQ's Food Safety Management Software will also give food chain stakeholders the ability to streamline processes, reduce inefficiencies due to paper-based forms, as well as provide greater visibility into their system all with the goal of demonstrating their commitment to food safety and food quality. Most notably, using quantitative Risk Assessment tools, stakeholders can identify hazards more effectively, make the process more efficient, and mitigate any unforeseen risks down the food chain.