From The Editor | July 5, 2016

Food Online's Top 10 Of June

Sam Lewis

By Sam Lewis, associate editor
Follow Me On Twitter @SamIAmOnFood

Top 10

What was most important to our readers in June? Take a look back at last month by reviewing the 10 most-popular articles that appeared on Food Online.

  1. Quality: Why Meeting Specifications Isn’t Good Enough
    The definition of quality in manufacturing usually contains phrases such as "meeting specifications," "within limits," "fit for use," or something similar. What that definition really says is "good enough," though we seldom hear it expressed that candidly.  As long as the parameter is between the upper and lower limit goal posts, it is considered a quality product. This article will discuss a few theories on quality, how to apply them in your operations, and why quality should never be “just good enough.”
     
  2. FSMA’s Final Rule On Food Defense: What You Need To Know
    The objective of the last of FSMA’s last major rule — Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food Against Intentional Adulteration — is to thwart an intentional attack on the food supply that results in widespread public health harm, whether conducted by an outsider, or someone within your facility such as a disgruntled employee. The final rule, which was released ahead of schedule on May 26, provides an appropriate level of flexibility to firms required to develop and implement food defense plans, compared to the rule as initially proposed. This article will briefly touch on the major points of the rule and offer guidance toward compliance.
     
  3. How Can Food Producers Overcome Packaging Migration Challenges?
    Brand owners have scarce information on food packaging’s chemical composition. However, they ultimately carry the risk of economic damage if the packaging turns out to be problematic.
     
  4. Integrating Different Food Safety Cultures During Mergers & Acquisitions
    You’re a food manufacturer, your company is growing, and the decision has been made to acquire a new company for your established brand portfolio. But, joining different food safety protocols with another company is going to trigger a change of culture. How can you implement food safety programs and develop a unified culture of food safety with that newly acquired company? We all know creating a culture of food safety is no easy task. From developing your company’s guiding safety principles, implementing them, training employees on them, to having every employee — from the C-suite down to the production line — make food safety top of mind can seem like an overwhelming, if not impossible, task.
     
  5. Have You Risk Assessed Your Third-Party Auditors?
    FSMA’s final rule on Foreign Supplier Verification Programs (FSVP) requires that importers perform certain risk-based activities to verify food imported into the U.S. has been produced in a manner that meets applicable U.S. safety standards. Part of this new requirement says that importers are responsible for fully determining risk, understanding and assessing it, and evaluating preventative controls over any hazard the importer identifies that could foreseeably occur in the products they purchase. Where there is a hazard controlled by the foreign supplier that has a probability of serious adverse health consequences or death to humans or animals (SAHCODHA), an annual onsite audit is recommended. But who, outside of local certification bodies, are ensuring the competence of these auditors?
     
  6. FSMA’s Final Sanitary Transportation Rule Provides Greater Flexibility
    With the publication of the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food rule, the food industry now has six of the seven foundational rules that establish a modern, risk-based framework for food safety. When compared with the original proposed rule, this final rule is flexible and takes into account the transportation industry’s existing best practices that prevent food safety risks. This article will examine FSMA’s sanitary transport rule, explain who it applies to, and offers suggestions for compliance.
     
  7. How Is JIFSAN Helping To Modernize Global Food Safety?
    As the supply chain continues to expand its global reach, the need for improved food safety at every stretch of the globe becomes greater and greater. Here, Janie Dubois, laboratory program manager for the Joint Institute for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (JIFSAN), answers Global Food Safety Forum (GFSF) Chairman Rick Gilmore’s questions on behalf of Food Online about JIFSAN’s efforts to improve food safety on a global level. Dubois also addresses some of the latest technologies that are improving food safety.
     
  8. Ignorance Is No Excuse Criminal: Liability In The Produce Industry
    We’ve all heard the reports about the salad plant in Springfield, OH that closed as the federal government continues to investigate a listeria outbreak. The phrase “federal investigation” should be enough to send chills down any produce executive’s spine. You may be saying to yourself, “That couldn’t happen to me.” You’re wrong. The days of the federal government limiting its investigations to civil penalties or on-site managers are over. The government’s new tactics to deal with contamination issues are fraud and conspiracy charges for executives carrying real penalties, including prison time.
     
  9. The FDA & CFIA Agree Their Food Safety Systems Are Similar… Now What?
    With FSMA’s final rules being published, the clock is ticking until enforcement of the legislation becomes a reality. So, how does the FDA implement enforcement and achieve the level of oversight prescribed by FSMA? And how does the FDA ensure foreign suppliers are meeting FSMA requirements? To answer that question, in part, we need to consider foreign food safety systems and how they measure up to FSMA.
     
  10. The ABCs Of Building A Food Safety Plan From HACCP To HARPC
    The FDA required hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) for juice and seafood, and the USDA for meat and poultry. The Food Safety Modernization Act’s (FSMA) proposed Preventive Controls rule for Human Food requires a written Food Safety Plan (FSP) be developed using the hazard analysis risk-based preventive control (HARPC) approach. A preventive approach to food safety is nothing new. But the HARPC approach is a new paradigm shift in thinking. This article will explain this new thinking, define, what HARPC approach is, explain how HARPC is different than HACCP, and how employing this thinking helps you arrive at developing a Food Safety Plan.