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Food Safety Programs

HCG is available to assist food establishments to develop and implement food safety programs or review the adequacy of existing food safety systems for compliance with regulatory authorities or global food safety standards. Food safety programs include HACCP Plans, SSOP systems, GMPs Pathogen Control Programs and Food Defense Programs.

GFSI Certification

The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) is a business driven effort toward the improvement and measurement of food suppliers’ abilities to deliver safe food to consumers and customers.

While many companies produce and deliver safe food, only those who have passed an accredited GFSI third party audit can provide the their buyers the expected objective evidence of this ability.  Preparing for and gaining certification through a GFSI-accepted audit strengthens food safety systems and customer trust.  That strength leads to increased marketing abilities and future profitability.

While there are several types of audits recognized by GFSI, the most common in the United States are the Safe Quality Food (SQF), British Retail Consortium (BRC) and Food Safety System Certification (FSSC 22000) audits.

With most retail customers demanding certification, it is important your company obtain and maintain GFSI status to remain competitive in a global market. 

The HACCP Consulting Group has experience assisting companies achieve certification to these audits.  We use a practical approach and encourage development of simple, effective management systems.  We work with you to examine your strengths and weaknesses.  We assist where you need us most, building upon your programs and experience.  We can provide draft documents when needed but do not recommend ‘canned’ programs. It is best to develop your company within your culture to achieve a system you can manage and sustain.

At HCG, we are often asked, “How long will this take and what does it cost?”  The fastest we have helped a company achieve certification was 3 months, but it can take over a year depending on the complexity of the company and the resources available.  We match our pace to meet your needs. There is no set price or standardized implementation plan. We invoice for our time and services ensuring we add value with each encounter. We don’t just build a system to pass an audit.  We strengthen your systems to ensure food safety, regulatory compliance and your ability to prove you do things right. Some of the tools we offer include:

Gap assessments

Documentation development

HACCP and GFSI  training for all levels of the organization

Internal Auditor training and assistance

Pre-audit practice assessments

 

While HCG can provide assistance in several GFSI accepted schemes, please take a moment to read more about the Safe Quality Food (SQF) system on our website.  Because of the high demand in this area, HCG is an SQF Licensed Training Center offering consulting and training services for beginning and advanced SQF systems.

Printable flyers are available in English and Espanol.

International Services

ELIGIBILITY TO EXPORT FOOD PRODUCTS TO THE UNITED STATES

(English and Spanish)

The HACCP Consulting Group assists both government inspection agencies and industry establishments to achieve and/or maintain eligibility to export food products to the United States by providing a complete range of services to meet all U.S. requirements. Countries which are approved to export to the U.S. will meet import requirements of nearly all the WTO member countries and may significantly expand the export markets for their products.

The HACCP Consulting Group professionals will assess all or any part of an exporting country’s entire food production inspection system to determine areas of difference with the  USDA, FSIS and FDA requirements.

These areas include:

  • Inspection laws and regulations.
  • Organizational structure.
  • Government staffing and training of inspection personnel.
  • Ability to take regulatory actions.
  • Supervisory oversight.
  • National residue control program for animal drugs and pesticides.
  • Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (SSOP).
  • Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP).
  • Humane slaughter reviews of country certified plants to ensure compliance with FSIS regulations.
  • Preparation of the FSIS, Self Reporting Tool (SRT).
  • Preparation for  a FSIS audit of an exporting country’s meat and poultry food safety system

ADOPTING CODEX FOOD SAFETY STANDARDS

HCG can also assist with the adoption of CODEX Food Safety standards.  HCG can

  • Provide detailed guidance on how to adopt and implement internationally accepted food safety standards.
  • Assist with development of inspection and enforcement programs.
  • Assist with the development of government oversight procedures of SSOP and HACCP plans.
  • Provide assistance in developing a national residue control program.
  • Provide assistance with developing a comprehensive microbiological testing program.

International TRAINING

HACCP Consulting Group (HCG) professionals are accredited by the International HACCP Alliance as lead instructors and train-the-trainers to meet the intent of the FSIS and FDA training requirements. We can provide training to government inspection officials and industry personnel on:

  • U.S. model for inspection and enforcement.
  • Accredited Basic and Advanced HACCP Training (English and Spanish) and Auditing.
  • Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs).
  • Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (SSOPs) training.
  • Food regulatory inspection training for verification of plant’s compliance with FSIS, Pathogen Reduction/HACCP and FDA regulations.
  • The equivalence process used by FSIS.
  • Customized services and training to meet the specific needs of the client.

Printable flyers regarding International Services provided by HCG are available in English and Espanol.