FSSC 22000, a comprehensive Food Safety Management Systems (FSMS), offers a structured approach to effectively manage food safety and quality responsibilities. Demonstrating the establishment of a robust and successful FSMS, FSSC 22000 ensures compliance with regulatory standards, meets the expectations of food industry stakeholders, and satisfies consumer demands. Endorsed by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), and backed by the European Food and Drink Association (CIAA) and the American Groceries Manufacturing Association (GMA), the FSSC 22000 certification is distinct from other GFSI programs like IFS, BRC, and SQF, which primarily focus on product certification. This unique approach allows organizations to tailor their processes while adhering to required standards.

Key Components of FSSC 22000:

ISO 22000: This framework establishes a common foundation across the supply chain for managing requirements, communication, and continuous improvement within the system.

PRPs (Prerequisite Programs): These sector-specific programs (aligned with ISO/TS Standards/BSI PAS) address necessary conditions for maintaining food safety.

FSSC 22000 Requirements: These specifications are integrated to ensure the scheme's coherence, integrity, governance, and overall management.

Scope of FSSC 22000 Certification:

FSSC 22000 certification is applicable to various sectors, including but not limited to:

  1. Food Manufacturing (ISO 22002-1)
  2. Catering (ISO 22002-2)
  3. Farming of Animals (ISO 22002-3)
  4. Food Packaging Manufacturing (ISO 22002-4)
  5. Food and Feed for Animals (ISO 22002-6)
  6. Retail and Supermarkets (PAS 221)
  7. Logistics (NTA 8059 - In the process of becoming ISO 22002-5)

Essential Requirements for FSSC 22000:

  1. Understand external and internal factors and relevant stakeholders concerning food safety.
  2. Develop a concise Food Handling Strategy, outlining the commitment to food safety.
  3. Establish a dedicated Food Safety Team.
  4. Devise and execute a Hazard Control Plan.
  5. Create a Food Safety Management System (FSMS) or Management Manual, addressing ISO 22000 clauses and specific FSSC 22000 requirements.
  6. Implement food safety practices aligned with particular prerequisite programs (PRPs).
  7. Develop procedures, especially for Critical Control Points (CCPs) and operational prerequisite programs (OPRPs).
  8. Maintain records for monitoring CCPs and OPRPs.
  9. Set and monitor food safety objectives and targets.
  10. Address food safety risks and opportunities.
  11. Formulate and implement a Food Defense Plan and Food Fraud Vulnerability Plan.
  12. Monitor food safety performance.
  13. Plan responses for food safety emergencies.
  14. Ensure staff competence and understanding of their food safety roles.
  15. Manage and rectify food safety non-conformances.
  16. Facilitate internal and external communication on food safety matters.
  17. Evaluate and monitor external providers.
  18. Implement an allergen management program.
  19. Verify PRPs and Hazard Control Panel implementation.
  20. Conduct internal audits of the food safety management system.
  21. Gain senior management's commitment to the food safety management system.

FSSC Certification Process:

The process for FSSC 22000 certification typically spans six to nine months, contingent upon the organization's preparedness prior to embarking on the GFSI journey. The process involves these main steps:

Step1: Apply to NSF for FSSC 22000 certification.

Step2: Contract approval with NSF.

Step3: Optionally, undergo a pre-audit/gap analysis to identify weaknesses before the formal audit.

Step 4: First audit- Evaluate readiness during on-site audits to determine compliance with FSSC 22000 requirements.

Step5: Second stage audit- Review records and conduct employee interviews to ensure adherence to standards and procedures.

Step 6: Technical examination of the audit report.

Address any non-conformances identified, providing corrective actions.

Step 7: Receive the FSSC 22000 certificate from NSF.

The certification remains valid for three years, with certified businesses undergoing surveillance audits to maintain it. FSSC 22000 also mandates an unannounced audit once within each certification cycle.

Required Documentation:

  1. FSMS or Management Manual Procedures.
  2. Food Safety Improvement Plan.
  3. Food Defense Plan.
  4. Food Fraud Vulnerability Plan.
  5. Emergency Plan.
  6. Allergen Management Plan.
  7. Records for OPRP & CCP monitoring.
  8. Registers for non-conformances and corrective actions.
  9. Food Safety Policy.
  10. Hazard Control Plan.

ISO 22000:2018 - Read More

Halal Certification - Read More