ISO 22000 Certification is an international standard that defines the requirements of a food safety management system covering all organizations in the food chain from “farm to fork”. The standard combines generally recognized key elements to ensure food safety along the food chain.
The food chain consists of the entire sequence of stages and operations involved in the creation and consumption of food products. This includes every step from initial production to final consumption. More precisely, it includes the production, processing, distribution, storage, and handling of all food and food ingredients.
The food chain also includes organizations that do not directly handle food. These include organizations that produce feed for animals that produce food and for animals that will be used as food. It also includes organizations that produce materials that will eventually come into contact with food or food ingredients.
ISO 22000:2018 Certification is also for companies seeking to integrate their quality management system, for example ISO 9001, and their food safety management system.
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The ISO 22000 international standard specifies the requirements for a food safety management system that involves the following elements:
Critical reviews of the above elements have been conducted by many scientists. Communication along the food chain is essential to ensure that all relevant food safety hazards are identified and adequately controlled at each step within the food chain. This implies communication between organizations both upstream and downstream in the food chain. Communication with customers and suppliers about identified hazards and control measures will assist in clarifying customer and supplier requirements.
Recognition of the organization’s role and position within the food chain is essential to ensure effective interactive communication throughout the chain in order to deliver safe food products to the final consumer.
The most effective food safety systems are established, operated and updated within the framework of a structured management system and incorporated into the overall management activities of the organization. This provides maximum benefit for the organization and interested parties. ISO 22000 has been aligned with ISO 9001 in order to enhance the compatibility of the two standards.
ISO 22000 can be applied independently of other management system standards or integrated with existing management system requirements.
ISO 22000 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 programmes. Hazard analysis is the key to an effective food safety management system, since conducting a hazard analysis assists in organizing the knowledge required to establish an effective combination of control measures. ISO 22000 requires that all hazards that may be reasonably expected to occur in the food chain, including hazards that may be associated with the type of process and facilities used, are identified and assessed. Thus it provides the means to determine and document why certain identified hazards need to be controlled by a particular organization and why others need not.
During hazard analysis, the organization determines the strategy to be used to ensure hazard control by combining the prerequisite programmes and the HACCP plan.
ISO is developing additional standards that are related to ISO 22000. These standards will be known as the ISO 22000 family of standards. At the present time, the following standards will make up the ISO 22000 family of standards: