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Food Safety And Food Quality Assurance Environmental Sciences Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Environmental Sciences
Wordcount: 2403 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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The food industry/fish industry has a moral and legal obligation to produce safe and wholesome food. Food firm management must continue to be the first line of defense in the production and manufacture of safe food (Alli, 2004).

The first step in food safety program is a food factory safety program is the establishment of a safety committee with full authority for assuring the manufacture of safe and wholesomeness of food.

The second major safety compound which is important in any food firm are the methods on the food processing. The food plant must have strict operating specifications or every unit operation in the plant. Every food plant has different operating specification even it plant processes same products.

The third key safety factor in every food firm is the hazards associated with the various commodities and/or the various processes or usually methods in use. Raw material that are use in food plant should be monitor by the quality assurance team. It is to reduce hazard on raw material. Furthermore, on food processing plant, hazard may also appear.

Biological, chemical, and physical hazards can cause seafood-related illnesses. Biological hazards include Clostridium botulinum, Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella, E. coli, and pathogenic staphylococcus. Chemical hazards include compounds such as Pb, carcinogenic compound, , which can cause illness from long-term exposure. Physical hazards include foreign objects in food that can cause harm when eaten, such as glass, hair, , or metal fragments.

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Food Safety and Food Quality Assurance

Food safety is the assurance that food will not cause harm to the consumer when it is prepared and eaten according to its intended use. The assurance that food may not cause harm, injury, or illness is determined by (1) all harmful substances present in the food have been eliminated or prevented from exceeding the acceptable level; and (2) the food has been prepared, handled, and stored under controlled and sanitary conditions in conformance with practices prescribed by government regulation (Alli, 2004).

The fish industry, like many other industries, has used basic quality control programs, and more complex quality assurance programs and quality management systems, in its efforts to achieve food quality. Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (SSOP) and the Hazard Analytical Critical Control Point (HCCP) system can be integrated into a food industry, quality management system, or inspection and monitoring materials, products, and processes for food safety hazards can be part of quality control program.

On implementation of food safety system, food industry policies should be based on food safety regulation. There are some food safety regulations as follows:

Food safety regulation 1995 in the UK

These regulations came into force on 15 September 1995 and implement the provision of the directive on hygiene foodstuff (93/94/EEC; section except for those which relate to temperature control (section 12.5.4.). This main feature of regulations is that proprietors are required to identify and control food safety risk at all stages in preparation and selling of food using “hazard analysis” (Forshyte and Hayes, 1998). This must be done according to the following principles:

Analysis of potential food hazards in the operation.

Identification of those points in the operation where hazards, may occur.

Deciding which the points identified is critical to ensuring food safety.

Identifying and implementing effective control and monitoring procedures at those critical points.

Review of the system periodically and whenever the operation changes.

Fish, shellfish and fishery products legislation in the EC

Legislation Council Directive 91/493/EEC legislation is concerned directly with fish. This legislation aims to harmonize measures for the handling and treatment of all fish and shellfish at all stages up to retailing. There is the usual detail in food standards, this covering factory vessels and fish processing factory. The Council Directive, 91/492/EEC lays down health conditions for the production and placing on the market of live bivalve mollusks (Foshyte and Hayes, 1998).

The commission Decision 93/51/EEC on the microbiological criteria applicable to the production of cooked crustaceans and mollusks shellfish is summarized in Table 1.1.

The Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) regulation in the USA

According to Forsythe and Hayes (1998), this regulation is divided into four subparts, as follows:

General provision: This part is concerning personnel. No person affected by disease or boils, sores, infected wounds, etc, may work in food premises where there is a reasonable possibly of food being contaminated or other personnel infected.

Building and facilities: the need for clean surround to factories is stressed so that pets are not attracted and food not contaminated. Factories should be constructed so that cleaning is facilitated and adequate working and storage space should be provided. Floors, walls and ceilings should be constructed well to allow for adequate cleaning, duct and pipes should not be suspended working areas where drip or condensate may contaminate food materials or food contact surfaces.

Table 1.1. The examples bacteriological standards for fish products in several countries







Fish products 91/493/EEC and Commision Decision 93/51/EEC

Cooked crustaceans and molluscan shellfish


Absent in 25 g, n=5, c=0

Cooked crustaceans and molluscan shellfish

Other pathogens and toxin thereof

Not to be present in quantities such as to affect health

Whole products

Mesophilic aerobic bacteria

m = 10000

M = 100000 n = 5 c = 2

Crab meat

Mesophilic aerobic bacteria

m = 100000

M = 1000000 n = 5 c = 2


Sliced fish, crumbed or not; fresh fish fillets, refrigerated

Total aerobes

Faecal coliforms

S. aureus

Anaerobic shulphite reducer


50.000 per g max

10 per g max

100 per g max

2 per g max

Absent in 25 g

Shellfish, bivalves, urchins live

Faecal coliforms

Faecal streptococci


300 per 100 ml max

2500 per 100 ml max

Absent in 25 g


Marshall (1986)

Crab meat, fresh or frozen

E. coli

4 per g max

Shrimps, raw, breaded

Viable aerobic bacteria

100000 per g max

E. coli

4 per g max

S. aureus

100 per g max


Marshall (1986)

Frozen foods: Require only thawing before consumsption

Total viable bacteria


< 100000 per g

Absent in 1 g

Heated before consumption

Total viable bacteria


< 3 x 106 per g

Absent in 1 g

Raw oyster

Total viable bacteria;E coli

50000 per g max; 230 per 100 g max


Anon (1995)

Fish product

Number of bacteria


E coli

Negative for sterilized products

Exection half-processed & surimi

Negative for half-processed & surimi

Source: Forsythe and Hayes (1998)Equipment. This subpart includes a very brief description of desirable features in the design and construction of food processing equipment. Design and construction must ensure that contamination of food with lubricants, fuel, metal fragments, etc. are avoided. Food contact surfaces must be corrosion resistant, made of non-toxic materials and be resistant to the action of any food materials.

Production and process control. This subpart includes regulations for the inspection, cleaning and storage of raw materials, restrictions on the use of food premises, and equipment and regulations on the cleaning and maintenance of equipment.

International implementation of HACCP concept

HACCP is internationally accepted as the major means of assuring food safety as promoted by the Codex Alimentarius Commission (Forsythe and Hayes, 1998). The joint FAO/WHO Codex Alimentarius Commission describes the steps needed to implement the HACCP system. Before implementing a company should have minimum hygiene measures, for example, according to the Codex General Principles of Food Hygiene, the appropriate Codex Codes of Practice and appropriate food safety legislation. These requirements should be well specified and documented, fully operational and verified in order to facilitate the successful application and implementation of HACCP (National Board of Experts-HACCP, 2002 in Plaggenhoef et al., 2002 )

The HACCP system which is science based and systematic, identifies specific hazards and measures for their control to ensure the safety of food. HACCP is a tool to assess hazards and establish control systems that focus on prevention rather than relying mainly on end-product testing (FAO/WHO, 1997).

e. ISO 22000:2005

ISO 22000 is international standard that was prepared by Technical Committee ISO/TC 34, Food products. This International Standard specifies the requirements for a food safety management system that combines the fol owing general y recognized key elements to ensure food safety along the food chain, up to the point of final consumption: interactive communication, system management, prerequisite programs, and HACCP principles. This International Standard integrates the principles of the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) system and application steps developed by the Codex Alimentarius Commission. By means of auditable requirements, it combines the HACCP plan with prerequisite programs (PRPs). This International Standard specifies requirements for a food safety management system where an organization in the food chain needs to demonstrate its ability to control food safety hazards in order to ensure that food is safe at the time of human consumption (ISO, 2005).

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1.3. The Relationship between Prerequisite program, HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points) and TQM (Total Quality Management)

Fish plants that operate with HACCP system will have the required prerequisite programs that includes GMP and some industry sectors in Indonesia include SSOP. The fish processing plants that do not have HACCP system, the GMP remains essential for addressing food safety. It is more appropriate for the HACCP prerequisite to be used instead of the basic GMP. The prerequisite programs provides more comprehensive coverage of the requirements relating to conditions and activities in a food plant than will the GMP. In food plants that do not operate with HACCP systems but have implemented the ISO 9001 Quality Management Systems standard, as a minimum the GMP should be part of the applicable regulatory requirements of the standard (Alli, 2004).

All food plants need to develop and implement a program of GMP to address food safety requirement. Food plants that develop and implement the HACCP systems to address food safety also need to develop and implement the HACCP prerequisite programs. The activities for GMP or the HACCP prerequisite programs that are developed at a food plant should be documented as SOP. In addition, where monitoring, inspection, or testing is carried out as part of the programs, records should be kept as evidence that these activities are actually performed (Alli, 2004).

HACCP is an approach to hygienic food production by prevention of problem (Forsythe and Hayes, 1998). The hazards analysis portion of HACCP involves a systematic study of the ingredients, the food product, the conditions of processing, handling, storage, packaging, distribution and consumer use (Pearson and Dutson, 1999).

TQM is an effort for continuously improving the quality of all process, products, and services through universal participation of all employees, that lead greater customer satisfaction and loyality, and improved business results (Sarvadan, 1992 in Pearson and Dutson, 1999).

In many cases, the TQM approach has produced remarkable changes in how management and employees envision and interpret quality. The TQM approach requires a company to develop a strategy, involving all levels and functions of the company, which focuses on satisfying the customer. Everyone involved TQM will have a new ‘mind set’ towards quality. Consequently, there will be a drastic and permanent change in the culture of company, giving company personnel an entirely new focus on quality improvement (Pearson and Dutson, 1999).

The combination of TQM and HAACP, include GMP and SSOP, provides a total systems approach to food processing, encompassing the elements of food safety, food quality and food productivity (NFPA, 1992). This combine method will stress commitment, education, preventive and corrective action, statistical control, record keeping, verification and teamwork (Pearson and Dutson, 1999).

TQM teams, responsible for developing and implementing HACCP, should comprise representatives from a variety of discipline and workers from all levels. This type of diversity assures effective evaluation of all areas that may have an impact on safe food processing (Pearson and Dutson, 1999).


In summary, hazard in food industry may be includes biological, physical, and microbiological aspects. They present new challenges to the industry and they must be eliminated during the manufacture of safe and wholesomeness food. All finished product must be audited for quality assurance through the marketing channel, and every plant must establish quality assurance department with full authority to uphold the policies and standards of food firm for the production of safe and safety. High quality foods that are safe are in great demand and the technology is available to any food firm to live well within the rules and regulation for the production of foods that are most acceptable.


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