HIPS Cups_In seek of sustainable solutions

As Sri Lankan environmental experts, governmental institutions, and environmental activist says, over 30million HIPS yoghurt cups are being sold each month in this island. That is 1 million yoghurts per day; while total population of Sri Lanka is about 20 million. So we are in a situation of 01 of each 20 persons of Sri Lanka buying a yoghurt each day, and further elaborations are not need to convince how big this dairy industry is.

Protector of this 80g of yoghurt at 4 Celsius in cool dry place for 30 days is the HIPS based yoghurt cup, which is about 3.5 grams in net weight and probably the most convenient dairy packaging solution in the modern day.

As the fight against plastic pollution intensifies around the world, industries of HIPS based manufacturing are forced to find out an alternative solutions which are convenient, and ecofriendly as same as HIPS cups. These efforts are often legitimately sustainable and suggest a viable path toward a zero “single use plastic food packaging cup waste” in future, such as compostable plastic sheets and bags that replace HDPE. Sometimes, however, what seems groundbreaking sustainable at first glance is not so greener upon closer inspection.

Over the years, many visionaries has often written about plastic reduction or supposedly green alternatives. what they says’, actually be dead-ends in mass scale applications. The list of alternatives for HIPS Cups as these environmental gurus says are listed below,

  1. Stainless steel
  2. Glass
  3. Platinum silicone
  4. Beeswax-coated cloth
  5. Natural fiber cloth
  6. Wood
  7. Bamboo
  8. Pottery and Other Ceramics
  9. Paper; Cardboard

No doubt and seems funny some of the alternatives as such cardboard, paper, bamboo, and wood which are not convent whatsoever in the mass scale manufacturing of dairy, and definitely do much more damage to the environment by over exploitation of natural resources, energy consumption, and GHG emission. Do not forget these items need at least 15gsm polyethylene coating for their inner surface to store yoghurt products for 30 days period without a fear of perishing though maintain 100% free of cross contamination, 4 Celsius , and cool dry place.

Platinum silicone, Beeswax-coated cloth, Natural fiber cloth are out of discussion even in Sri Lankan context, due to the practical difficulties of acquiring enough material to cater this gigantic market.

What about Stainless steel, Glass, and Pottery and Other Ceramics? Yes what about it? Think if you have to purchase a yoghurt made with stainless-steel container? Few of long listed questions are how you going to seal it? What would be the weight? Is it convenient? How much space for the factory? How much GHG will emit per cup and energy consumption? Material acquiring? How to recover materials? What would be the price? and more to think by readers.

Glass? How to acquire resources? Same as stainless steel glass industry needs about 5x energy for manufacture containers. Above mentions are again repeated for the glass.

Pottery and ceramics? Well yes to cater a market of village! Not for a country. Repeat above questions again and again and think the convenience. Do not forget yoghurt is a highly perishable nutritious product need total consideration of microbes contaminating through packaging container.

Truly in current scenario, not only Sri Lanka but also the globe doesn’t have a convenient alternative for the HIPS food containers to cater the market demands.

Fossil Fuel, Plastics, and Us

Plastics, useful byproducts of petrochemical industry are derived mainly from crude oil around the globe. Other than this, natural organic materials such as cellulose, coal, natural gas, and salts are used for manufacturing of plastics worldwide.

Crude oil, the most valued material in the globe, was formed millions of years ago from the remains of sea animals and plants, and therefore says as fossil fuel. Marine animals and plants that died millions of years ago sunk in to the seabed or ocean floor were decomposed and mixed with the silt. The remains were buried under layers of sand and silt on the seabed. Due to the deficiency of oxygen, bacteria were unable to decompose these completely. The partially decomposed remains, overtime formed into a large mass. This over the course of millions of years was covered by multiple layers of sand, silt and mud. As the depth of the sediment layers built up so did the weight of the sand and silt pressing down on the layer of partially decomposed remains causing it to be compressed into a thinner layer. Whilst the mud and silt layers become heavier the forces applied causes the bottom layers above the crude oil to turn into shale. The oil is forced out from its original area of formation and travels upwards through the cracks and gaps in the shale formation until it reaches a new impermeable rock formation called reservoir rock.

Crude oil is a complex mixture of thousands of compounds and needs to be processed before it can be used. Extracted crude oil is separated using fractional distillation based on content substances having different boiling points. By the process crude oil is evaporated and vapors condensed at different temperatures in the fractionating chambers. This separates the heavy crude oil into groups of lighter components. Each fraction/separation contains hydrocarbon molecules with a similar number of carbon atoms. Each fraction is a mixture of hydrocarbon, which differ in terms of the size and structure of their molecules.

How plastics are made from crude oil?

Petrochemical based plastics use naphtha as main raw material. Naphtha is further decomposed thermally and separated. Two main processes that used to produce plastics are polymerization and poly-condensation and they both require specific temperatures pressures and most importantly catalysts. In a polymerization reactor, monomers are linked together to form long polymer chains. Some polymer chains are heavily branched and some are not.

Based on the organic nature polymer has its own properties, while polymer structure and size depending on the various types of basic monomers used to manufacture. These polymers are commonly known as plastics. thermoplastics and thermosets are the main two groups of plastics. While thermoplastics are soften on heating and then harden again on cooling, thermosets are never soften once they have been moulded. Most common thermoplastics are polyethylene terephthalate, Polyvinyl chloride, Polypropylene, and Polystyrene. Common thermoset examples are epoxide, Phenol-formaldehyde, and Polyurethane.

What if?

Based on the requirement of the petrochemicals for the quality of living improvement of people, and as statista website says, the level of oil production is currently at an all-time high, with around 94.7 million barrels of oil produced daily in 2018, while showing only a rapid growth, but not decrease though invented many of alternative solutions.

So this means the quantity of byproducts generated by the processes are/ will be also increased rapidly in future. So if we don’t usedthese byproducts for plastic manufacturing like industries, there will be petrochemical waste management, and storage oriented bigger problems in near future.

What is the problem?

Problem was never and will never lies on plastics. Since the day one that Bakelite was invented on 1907, this valuable long-lasting substance was over exploited, over processed, misused, and wasted in leaner economical manner by people, and the results are plastic polluted oceans, uncontrolled landfills, and many more adverse things for us to bear on.

Though how hard plastic industries were pressed by legal and social entities, how much money governments expend to control/manage waste instead of focusing/ empowering circular economical concepts, and how hard environmental activist tries, until consumers understand that they are the polluters, who was unable to manage their own waste due to negligence and oversight, the unmanaged plastic problem may rise further and will last longer. 

Getting most out of your system

Though in the strategic moments, organizations took decisions to implement systems of various purposes, some of them ends up with employees just filling documents or with change of heads collapsing whole thing to the ground. Followings are the elementary requirements of systemic approach for the long lasting systems which are independent from people.

1.    Top Management, at their best

To have an effective systems, make sure that “Top Management” is committed to its establishment, implementation, update, and continual improvement. This need appointing suitable qualified persons for respective accountabilities and responsibilities, empowering personals, provide resources for the effective implementations, and frequent monitoring of the progress and achievements. Always remember to allocate sufficient resources to routinely test your controls. The threats your organization faces will constantly change and you need to test whether you are able to respond to those threats.

2.    Educate and get everyone involved

Streamline processes and implementation of systems are not the tasks of compliance department, quality assurance, or regulatory guys. Top Management involvement for context analysis covering requirements via SWOT, or PESTEL analysis, Performance monitoring, analysis and evaluation, requirements identification ad defining relevant scopes, policy and objectives, achievement plans setting is crucial. Other than this, MST team a.k.a. Management System Team and assigned personnel with valuable competence for process analysis and risk assessing, process control and procedure development, capacity building is essential. In a system, if somebody something, or some being is covered by the declared scope, all of those should be involved.

3.    Communication is the ice breaker

Make sure your system includes two PDCA cycles at operational and organizational levels, and communication between them is established and maintain at all times. Good communication always break barriers and emphasize synergism. Implementation of systems must need effective communication based on emotional intelligence.

4.    Are you a technical and detail oriented personal?

Identify all process by going deep into details. This helps to identify exact root causes and lapses of a process. Remember to identify how you have selected the applicable critical and acceptable levels within your system; these are specific to each process and product (not only food safety) and also depending on applicable regulations and customer needs and demands, so this information is not interchangeable! Also when changes to products or processes occurred, either planned or unintentionally, ensure your system is reviewed and established control measures still effective for the intended purpose of the system.

5.    Validate systems and regular check

Review your monitoring and measuring devices, software, or mechanisms are calibrated at specified frequency to ensure reliable results. Make sure to follow declared monitoring cycles always. Evaluation of monitoring and measurement results is a must in systemic approach.

6.    Control your external providers

Remember your external providers. Some will help you enhance your system with their positive influences, and some will increase your risk. Risk based thinking helps to have controls in place that are effective. However reviewing external providers is a must to keep system without lapses and gaps. 

7.    Conceptual thinking and mindset altering

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Systemic approach will mostly be new for many or most of your employees while ineffective communication and gaps will make them reluctant for change and keep their guards up. People may need to change habits ingrained over many years. A single awareness briefing is unlikely to be sufficient, so focus on your personnel competence as a fundamental key for the implementation of a good system. Change agent or representative coming in handy in the situations like this.

What Beruit Taught Us…

Almost 0.8 million of innocents have faced the wrath of the mother nature while covid-19 has taken many economies to the point break, while the global pandemic rolls on. Instead of being safe, due to its own mistakes and negligence, recently humanity shocked with a blizzard horror.

As global news channels, and Lebanon local media says 3,000 metric tons of ammonium nitrate; (NH4NO3) a salt of ammonia and nitric acid, used widely in fertilizers and explosives, which are unsafely stored for about 06 years, without proper safety precautions is the cause of death of 100, another 5000 wounded including several Sri Lankans.

Photos, and video footages as aftermath where “fat man” detonated over the Japanese city of Nagasaki by the united states on 9 august 1945, Shows that the colossal sized blast jackhammered the port of Beirut, with half of the capital of 19.8 km², indicates us the power of chemical explosion.

Same as this, you may remember the tragedy ends with killing five of innocent due to negligence and not providing proper safety information, which leads police to arrested the factory manager on suspicion of negligence, another case filed for suspected unsafe handling of chemicals, with some residents even demanded that the factory be closed.

As industrial professional sees, there is a serious learning curve embedded in this whole situation, not only in Beirut, but also in Horana. Boilers define as bombs inside the factory, where major concerns lies with legal and internal interested parties, same like consideration must be given to the chemical storages too. Chemical substances is a must factor in many of manufacturing and some of service industries, so being familiar with CDC classification is dead important to your business continuity, legal compliances to environment, health, and safety. Being conscious on dangerous and hazardous chemicals in your warehouse can cause explosions, corrosions, and a variety of health problems always makes you feel accountable for the whole process of chemical safety management, which is actual very good.

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Weather the business is small big or colossal no matter what it is required to manage their chemicals and other hazardous substances properly, and need to have fool-proof excellent chemical management system. Usually proper storage of chemicals to minimize the risks is demands by the legal entities seriously. Non-compliance with the laws concerning proper chemical storage may probably result in the suspension or revocation of your EPL to operate. To keep your business running without falling into trouble with the law, make sure to have your chemicals and other substances stored safely and properly.

Chemicals which are highly flammable, separate storage is required to protect workplace from possible fire and explosion. These occurrences can go big as Beirut, and when it does, it’ll not only affect employees and work premises but will also harm the neighboring community and the environment. Given such circumstances, you need to store your chemicals in their designated containers to ensure they’ll not ignite a fire or even explosion. Limited exposure to chemicals, your business operations will not only run smoothly but will also make your employees and the environment happy and healthy.

Proper storing of chemicals is to avoid them getting wasted. These valuable substances must have playing a crucial role in your business. Not only do they affect the health of your employees, but misusing them due to improper handling and storage can also impact your budget. In most cases, hazardous or dangerous chemicals aren’t really inexpensive. Depending on their uses, they can cost your business hundreds to thousands of money. So, it’s a great idea to work safely with chemicals and store them in proper containers to prevent wastage. That way, you’ll protect your company from wasting money for no good reason. Above all, keep the information above in mind, so you’ll be reminded of how important proper storage of chemicals is to your company and the environment.

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Followings are the Chemical Storage Guidelines from CDC (Guidelines for Safe Chemical Storage)

  • Safe chemical handling requires routine inspections of chemical storage areas and maintenance of stringent inventory control.
  • When chemicals must be used, proper storage and handling can reduce or eliminate associated risks.
  • All chemical storage areas and cabinets should be inspected at least annually and any unwanted or expired chemicals should be removed.
  • Typical storage considerations may include temperature, ignition control, ventilation, segregation and identification.
  • Proper segregation is necessary to prevent incompatible materials from inadvertently coming into contact. A physical barrier and/or distance is effective for proper segregation.
  • Proper storage information can usually be obtained from the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS), label, or other chemical reference material.
  • MSDS must be on hand for every hazardous chemical in your workplace. MSDSs must be provided by the manufacturer or distributor of chemicals purchased.

Keys for safe chemical storage:

  • Ensure all containers of hazardous chemicals are properly labeled with the identity of the hazardous chemical(s) and appropriate hazard warnings
  • Segregate all incompatible chemicals for proper storage of chemicals by hazard class. In other words, store like chemicals together and away from other groups of chemicals that might cause reactions if mixed. 
  •  Do not store chemicals alphabetically except within a grouping of compatible chemicals.
  • Flammable materials should be stored in an approved, dedicated flammable materials storage cabinet or storage room if the volume exceeds ten gallons. Keep doors closed.  
  •  Chemicals should be stored no higher than eye level and never on the top shelf of a storage unit. Do not overcrowd shelves. Each shelf should have an anti-roll lip. 
  • Avoid storing chemicals on the floor (even temporarily) or extending into traffic aisles. 
  • Liquids should be stored in unbreakable or double-contained packaging, or the storage cabinet should have the capacity to hold the contents if the container breaks. 
  • Store acids in a dedicated acid cabinet. Nitric acid may be stored there also but only if it is kept isolated from all other acids. 
  • Store highly toxic or controlled materials in a locked, dedicated poison cabinet. 
  • Volatile or highly odorous chemical shall be stored in a ventilated cabinet. Chemical fume hoods shall not be used for storage as containers block proper air flow in the hood and reduce available work space. 
  • All chemicals should be labeled and dated upon receipt in the lab and on opening. This is especially important for peroxide-forming chemicals such as ethers, dioxane, isopropanol, and tetrahydrofuran. Solutions should be labeled and dated when prepared. 
  • Look for unusual conditions in chemical storage areas, such as: Improper storage of chemicals, Leaking or deteriorating containers, Spilled chemicals, Temperature extremes (too hot or cold in storage area), Lack of or low lighting levels, Blocked exits or aisles, Doors blocked open, lack of security, Trash accumulation, Open lights or matches, Fire equipment blocked, broken or missing, Lack of information or warning signs (“Flammable liquids”, “Acids”, “Corrosives”, “Poisons”, etc.)
  • First aid supplies, emergency phone numbers, eyewash and emergency shower equipment, fire extinguishers, spill cleanup supplies and personal protective equipment should be readily available and personnel trained in their use.
  • Chemicals stored in explosion-proof refrigerators or cold rooms shall be sealed and labeled with the name of the person who stored the material in addition to all other required hazard warnings.  
  • Only compressed gas cylinders that are in use and secured in place shall be kept in the laboratory. All others, including empties, shall be sent to the compressed gas cylinder storage area for the particular facility. 
  • Keep all stored chemicals, especially flammable liquids, away from heat and direct sunlight.

Other Safety Tips:

  • Do not purchase these compounds in quantities greater than can be used in the specified storage time period.
  • Label containers with receiving, opening and disposal dates. 
  • Ethers should be stored in the dark and under nitrogen if possible.
  •  Always check for the presence of peroxides before distilling any peroxide-former.
  •  Consult safety references before working with peroxidizable compounds.
  •  If old containers of peroxide-forming chemicals are found, do not move them. Contact the Office of Health and Safety for assistance in disposing of the container.
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(ISO TS 22002-1) Guidelines of implementing

As additional guidance for the food manufacturing organizations to comply for prerequisite programs, ISO has published this technical specification, ISO/TS 22002-1. Non GFSI ISO 22000 and extensive GFSI recognized standards as FSSC 22000, BRC Food, and IFS Food requires that the organization establishes PRP programs to control the likelihood of introducing contamination through the work environment based on the nature of the food manufacturing, according to ISO TS 22002-1 which was PAS 220 previously. The technical standard of ISO TS 22002-1 leaves the responsibility for developing the details of the program to the organization; since it does not give specific requirements for the certain aspects of PRPs, which the organization to determine what is appropriate. Major considerations of the ISO TS 22002-1 as follows;

 Construction and layout of buildings

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ISO TS 22002-1 demands to have Buildings designed, constructed and maintained in a manner appropriate to the nature of the processing operations to be carried out, the food safety hazards associated with those operations and the potential sources of contamination from the plant environs while durability of the construction which presents no hazard to the product. Also under this clause food manufacturing organization need to give consideration to potential sources of contamination from the local environment. Food production not to be carried out in areas where potentially harmful substances could enter the product considered under environmental requirements. The effectiveness of measures taken to protect against potential contaminants need to be periodically reviewed, while site boundaries are clearly identified, access to the site controlled, and site maintained in good order. Vegetation at the facility to be tended or removed to prevent pest harborage as roosting birds. Roads, yards and parking areas need to design as they drained to prevent standing water and shall be maintained as per the Locations of establishment’s requirements.

Layout of premises and workspace

Internal layouts need to be designed, constructed and maintained to facilitate good hygiene and manufacturing practices. The movement patterns of materials, products and people, and the layout of equipment, shall be designed to protect against potential contamination sources considered as the general requirements. The buildings shall provide adequate space, with a logical flow of materials, products and personnel, and physical separation of raw from processed areas comes as internal design, layout and traffic patterns. Examples of physical separation include walls, barriers or partitions, or sufficient distance to minimize risk. Openings intended for transfer of materials shall be designed to minimize entry of foreign matter and pests. Process area walls and floors shall be washable or cleanable, as appropriate for the process or product hazard. Materials of construction shall be resistant to the cleaning system applied. Wall floor junctions and corners shall be designed to facilitate cleaning. It is recommended that wall floor junctions be rounded in processing areas. Floors shall be designed to avoid standing water. In wet process areas, floors shall be sealed and drained. Drains shall be trapped and covered. Ceilings and overhead fixtures shall be designed to minimize build-up of dirt and condensation. External opening windows, roof vents or fan, where present, shall be insect screened. External opening doors shall be closed or screened when not in use are under the internal structures and fittings. Equipment shall be designed and located so as to facilitate good hygiene practices and monitoring. Equipment shall be located to permit access for operation, cleaning and maintenance comes under the Location of equipment requirement. In-line and on-line test facilities shall be controlled to minimize risk of product contamination. Microbiology laboratories shall be designed, located and operated so as to prevent contamination of people, plant and products. They shall not open directly on to a production area. Temporary structures shall be designed, located and constructed to avoid pest harbourage and potential contamination of products. Additional hazards associated with temporary structures and vending machines shall be assessed and controlled. Facilities used to store ingredients, packaging and products shall provide protection from dust, condensation, drains, waste and other sources of contamination. Storage areas shall be dry and well ventilated. Monitoring and control of temperature and humidity shall be applied where specified. Storage areas shall be designed or arranged to allow segregation of raw materials, work in progress and finished products. All materials and products shall be stored off the floor and with sufficient space between the material and the walls to allow inspection and pest control activities to be carried out. The storage area shall be designed to allow maintenance and cleaning, prevent contamination and minimize deterioration. A separate, secure (locked or otherwise access controlled) storage area shall be provided for cleaning materials, chemicals and other hazardous substances. Exceptions for bulk or agricultural crop materials shall be documented in the food safety management system.

 Utilities — air, water, energy

The provision and distribution routes for utilities to and around processing and storage areas shall be designed to minimize the risk of product contamination. Utilities’ quality shall be monitored to minimize product contamination risk. The supply of potable water shall be sufficient to meet the needs of the production process(es). Facilities for storage, distribution and, where needed, temperature control of the water shall be designed to meet specified water quality requirements. Water used as a product ingredient, including ice or steam (including culinary steam), or in contact with products or product surfaces, shall meet specified quality and microbiological requirements relevant to the product. Water for cleaning or applications where there is a risk of indirect product contact (e.g. jacketed vessels, heat exchangers) shall meet specified quality and microbiological requirements relevant to the application. Where water supplies are chlorinated, checks shall ensure that the residual chlorine level at the point of use remains within limits given in relevant specifications. Non-potable water shall have a separate supply system that is labelled and not connected to the potable water system. Take measures to prevent non-potable water refluxing into the potable system. It is recommended that water that can come into contact with the product should flow through pipes that can be disinfected. Boiler chemicals, if used, shall be either approved food additives which meet relevant additive specifications; or additives which have been approved by the relevant regulatory authority as safe for use in water intended for human consumption. Boiler chemicals shall be stored in a separate, secure (locked or otherwise access-controlled) area when not in immediate use. The organization shall establish requirements for filtration, humidity (RH%) and microbiology of air used as an ingredient or for direct product contact. Where temperature and/or humidity are deemed critical by the organization, a control system shall be put in place and monitored. Ventilation (natural or mechanical) shall be provided to remove excess or unwanted steam, dust and odours, and to facilitate drying after wet cleaning. Room air supply quality shall be controlled to minimize risk from airborne microbiological contamination. Protocols for air quality monitoring and control shall be established in areas where products which support the growth or survival of microorganisms are exposed. Ventilation systems shall be designed and constructed such that air does not flow from contaminated or raw areas to clean areas. Specified air pressure differentials shall be maintained. Systems shall be accessible for cleaning, filter changing and maintenance. Exterior air intake ports shall be examined periodically for physical integrity. Compressed air, carbon dioxide, nitrogen and other gas systems used in manufacturing and/or filling shall be constructed and maintained so as to prevent contamination. Gases intended for direct or incidental product contact (including those used for transporting, blowing or drying materials, products or equipment) shall be from a source approved for food contact use, filtered to remove dust, oil and water. Where oil is used for compressors and there is potential for the air to come into contact with the product, the oil used shall be food grade. Use of oil free compressors is recommended. Requirements for filtration, humidity (RH%) and microbiology shall be specified. Filtration of the air should be as close to the point of use as is practicable. The lighting provided (natural or artificial) shall allow personnel to operate in a hygienic manner. The intensity of the lighting should be appropriate to the nature of the operation. Light fixtures shall be protected to ensure that materials, product or equipment are not contaminated in the case of breakages.

 Waste disposal

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Systems to be in place to ensure that waste materials are identified, collected, removed and disposed of in a manner which prevents contamination of products or production areas. Containers for waste and inedible or hazardous substances shall be clearly identified for their intended purpose, located in a designated area, constructed of impervious material which can be readily cleaned and sanitized, closed when not in immediate use, and locked where the waste may pose a risk to the product. Containers for waste and inedible or hazardous substances. Provision shall be made for the segregation, storage and removal of waste. Accumulation of waste shall not be allowed in food-handling or storage areas. Removal frequencies shall be managed to avoid accumulations, with a minimum daily removal. Labelled materials, products or printed packaging designated as waste shall be disfigured or destroyed to ensure that trademarks cannot be reused. Removal and destruction shall be carried out by approved disposal contractors. The organization shall retain records of destruction. Drains shall be designed, constructed and located so that the risk of contamination of materials or products is avoided. Drains shall have capacity sufficient to remove expected flow loads. Drains shall not pass over processing lines. Drainage direction shall not flow from a contaminated area to a clean area.

 Equipment suitability, cleaning and maintenance

Food contact equipment shall be designed and constructed to facilitate cleaning, disinfection and maintenance. Contact surfaces shall not affect, or be affected by, the intended product or cleaning system. Food contact equipment shall be constructed of durable materials able to resist repeated cleaning as general requirements. Equipment shall be able to meet established principles of hygienic design, including, smooth, accessible, cleanable surfaces, self draining in wet process areas, use of materials compatible with intended products and cleaning or flushing agents, framework not penetrated by holes or nuts and bolts. Piping and ductwork shall be cleanable, drainable, and with no dead ends. Equipment shall be designed to minimize contact between the operator’s hands and the products. Product contact surfaces shall be constructed from materials designed for food use. They shall be impermeable and rust or corrosion free. Equipment used for thermal processes shall be able to meet the temperature gradient and holding conditions given in relevant product specifications. Equipment shall provide for the monitoring and control of the temperature. Wet and dry cleaning programmes shall be documented to ensure that all plant, utensils and equipment are cleaned at defined frequencies. The programmes shall specify what is to be cleaned (including drains), the responsibility, and the method of cleaning (e.g. CIP, COP), the use of dedicated cleaning tools, removal or disassembly requirements and methods for verifying the effectiveness of the cleaning. A preventive maintenance programme shall be in place. The preventive maintenance programme shall include all devices used to monitor and/or control food safety hazards. Examples of such devices include screens and filters (including air filters), magnets, metal detectors and X-ray detectors. Corrective maintenance shall be carried out in such a way that production on adjoining lines or equipment is not at risk of contamination. Maintenance requests which impact product safety shall be given priority. Temporary fixes shall not put product safety at risk. A request for replacement by a permanent repair shall be included in the maintenance schedule. Lubricants and heat transfer fluids shall be food grade where there is a risk of direct or indirect contact with the product. The procedure for releasing maintained equipment back to production shall include clean up, sanitizing, where specified in process sanitation procedures, and pre-use inspection. Local area PRP requirements shall apply to maintenance areas and maintenance activities in process areas. Maintenance personnel shall be trained in the product hazards associated with their activities.

 Management of purchased materials

Purchasing of materials which impact food safety shall be controlled to ensure that the suppliers used have the capability to meet the specified requirements. The conformance of incoming materials to specify purchase requirements shall be verified comes as general requirements. There shall be a defined process for the selection, approval and monitoring of suppliers. The process used shall be justified by hazard assessment, including the potential risk to the final product, and shall include: assessment of the supplier’s ability to meet quality and food safety expectations, requirements and specifications; description of how suppliers are assessed; Examples of a description of how suppliers are assessed include: audit of the supplying site prior to accepting materials for production; appropriate third party certification, monitoring the performance of the supplier to assure continued approval status. Monitoring includes conformity with material or product specifications, fulfilment of COA requirements, satisfactory audit outcomes. Delivery vehicles shall be checked prior to, and during, unloading to verify that the quality and safety of the material has been maintained during transit (e.g. integrity of seals, freedom from infestation, existence of temperature records). Materials shall be inspected, tested or covered by COA to verify conformity with specified requirements prior to acceptance or use. The method of verification shall be documented. The inspection frequency and scope can be based on the hazard presented by the material and the risk assessment of the specific suppliers. Materials which do not conform to relevant specifications shall be handled under a documented procedure which ensures they are prevented from unintended use. Access points to bulk material receiving lines shall be identified, capped and locked. Discharge into such systems shall take place only after approval and verification of the material to be received are the Incoming material requirements (raw/ingredients/packaging)

Measures for prevention of cross-contamination

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Programmes shall be in place to prevent, control and detect contamination. Measures to prevent physical, allergen and microbiological contamination shall be included. Areas where potential for microbiological cross-contamination exists (airborne or from traffic patterns) shall be identified and a segregation (zoning) plan implemented. A hazard assessment shall be carried out to determine potential contamination sources, susceptibility of the product and control measures suitable for these areas as; separation of raw from finished or ready to eat (RTE) products, structural segregation — physical barriers, walls or separate buildings, access controls with requirements to change into required workwear, traffic patterns or equipment segregation — people, materials, equipment and tools (including use of dedicated tools), air pressure differentials. Allergens present in the product, either by design or by potential manufacturing cross-contact, shall be declared. The declaration shall be on the label for consumer products, and on the label or the accompanying documentation for products intended for further processing. Products shall be protected from unintended allergen cross-contact by cleaning and line change-over practices and/or product sequencing. Manufacturing cross-contact can arise from either; traces of product from the previous production run which cannot be adequately cleaned from the product line due to technical limitations; or when contact is likely to occur, in the normal manufacturing process, with products or ingredients that are produced on separate lines, or in the same or adjacent processing areas. Rework containing allergen(s) shall be used only; in products which contain the same allergen(s) by design; or through a process which is demonstrated to remove or destroy the allergenic material. Employees handling food should receive specific training in allergen awareness and associated manufacturing practices. Where brittle materials are used, periodic inspection requirements and defined procedures in case of breakage shall be put in place. Brittle materials, such as glass and hard plastic components in equipment, should be avoided where possible. Glass breakage records shall be maintained. Based on hazard assessment, measures shall be put in place to prevent, control or detect potential contamination. Physical contamination Examples of such measures include; adequate covers over equipment or containers for exposed materials or products, use of screens, magnets, sieves or filters, use of detection or rejection devices such as metal detectors or X-ray, Sources of potential contamination include wooden pallets and tools, rubber seals, and personal protective clothing and equipment.

Cleaning and sanitizing

Cleaning and sanitizing programmes shall be established to ensure that the food-processing equipment and environment are maintained in a hygienic condition. Programmes shall be monitored for continuing suitability and effectiveness. Facilities and equipment shall be maintained in a condition which facilitates wet or dry cleaning and/or sanitation. Cleaning and sanitizing agents and chemicals shall be clearly identified, food grade, stored separately and used only in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. Tools and equipment shall be of hygienic design and maintained in a condition which does not present a potential source of extraneous matter. Cleaning and sanitizing agents and tools. Cleaning and sanitizing programmes shall be established and validated by the organization to ensure that all parts of the establishment and equipment are cleaned and/or sanitized to a defined schedule, including the cleaning of cleaning equipment. Cleaning and/or sanitizing programmes shall specify at a minimum, areas, items of equipment and utensils to be cleaned and/or sanitized; responsibility for the tasks specified; cleaning/sanitizing method and frequency; monitoring and verification arrangements; post-clean inspections; pre start-up inspections. CIP systems shall be separated from active product lines. Parameters for CIP systems shall be defined and monitored (including type, concentration, contact time and temperature of any chemicals used). Cleaning and sanitation programmes shall be monitored at frequencies specified by the organization to ensure their continuing suitability and effectiveness.

Pest control

Hygiene, cleaning, incoming materials inspection and monitoring procedures shall be implemented to avoid creating an environment conducive to pest activity. The establishment shall have a nominated person to manage pest control activities and/or deal with appointed expert contractors. Pest management programmes shall be documented and shall identify target pests, and address plans, methods, schedules, control procedures and, where necessary, training requirements. Programmes shall include a list of chemicals which are approved for use in specified areas of the establishment.

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Buildings shall be maintained in good repair. Holes, drains and other potential pest access points shall be sealed. External doors, windows or ventilation openings shall be designed to minimize the potential for entry of pests. Storage practices shall be designed to minimize the availability of food and water to pests. Material found to be infested shall be handled in such a way as to prevent contamination of other materials, products or the establishment. Potential pest harbourage (e.g. burrows, undergrowth, stored items) shall be removed. Where outside space is used for storage, stored items shall be protected from weather or pest damage (e.g. bird droppings). Harbourage and infestations. Pest-monitoring programmes shall include the placing of detectors and traps in key locations to identify pest activity. A map of detectors and traps shall be maintained. Detectors and traps shall be designed and located so as to prevent potential contamination of materials, products or facilities. Detectors and traps shall be of robust, tamper-resistant construction. They shall be appropriate for the target pest. The detectors and traps shall be inspected at a frequency intended to identify new pest activity. The results of inspections shall be analysed to identify trends. Eradication measures shall be put in place immediately after evidence of infestation is reported. Pesticide use and application shall be restricted to trained operatives and shall be controlled to avoid product safety hazards. Records of pesticide use shall be maintained to show the type, quantity and concentrations used; where, when and how applied, and the target pest.

Personnel hygiene and employee facilities

Requirements for personal hygiene and behaviours proportional to the hazard posed to the process area or product shall be established and documented. All personnel, visitors and contractors shall be required to comply with the documented requirements. Personnel hygiene facilities shall be available to ensure that the degree of personal hygiene required by the organization can be maintained. The facilities shall be located close to the points where hygiene requirements apply and shall be clearly designated. Establishments shall; provide adequate numbers, locations and means of hygienically washing, drying and, where required, sanitizing hands (including wash-basins, supply of hot and cold or temperature controlled water, and soap and/or sanitizer); have sinks designated for hand washing, whose taps should not be hand operated, separate from sinks for food use and equipment-cleaning stations; provide an adequate number of toilets of appropriate hygienic design, each with hand-washing, drying and, where required, sanitizing facilities; have employee hygiene facilities that do not open directly on to production, packing or storage areas; have adequate changing facilities for personnel; have changing facilities sited to enable personnel handling food to move to the production area in such a way that risk to the cleanliness of their workwear is minimized. Staff canteens and designated areas for food storage and consumption shall be situated so that the potential for cross-contamination of production areas is minimized. Staff canteens shall be managed to ensure hygienic storage of ingredients and preparation, storage and serving of prepared foods. Storage conditions and storage, cooking and holding temperatures, and time limitations, shall be specified. Employees’ own food shall be stored and consumed in designated areas only. Personnel who work in, or enter into, areas where exposed products and/or materials are handled shall wear work clothing that is fit for purpose, clean and in good condition (e.g. free from rips, tears or fraying material). Clothing mandated for food protection or hygiene purposes shall not be used for any other purpose. Workwear shall not have buttons. Workwear shall not have outside pockets above waist level. Zips or press stud fastenings are acceptable. Workwear shall be laundered to standards and at intervals suitable for the intended use of the garments. Workwear shall provide adequate coverage to ensure that hair, perspiration, etc. cannot contaminate the product. Hair, beards, and moustaches shall be protected (i.e. completely enclosed) by restraints unless hazard analysis indicates otherwise. Where gloves are used for product contact, they shall be clean and in good condition. Use of latex gloves should be avoided where possible. Shoes for use in processing areas shall be fully enclosed and made from non-absorbent materials. Personal protective equipment, where required, shall be designed to prevent product contamination and maintained in hygienic condition. Workwear and protective clothing Subject to legal restrictions in the country of operation, employees shall undergo a medical examination prior to employment in food contact operations (including site catering), unless documented hazard or medical assessment indicates otherwise. Additional medical examinations, where permitted, shall be carried out at intervals defined by the organization. Where permitted by law, employees shall be required to report the following conditions to management for possible exclusion from food-handling areas: jaundice, diarrhoea, vomiting, and fever, sore throat with fever, visibly infected skin lesions (boils, cuts or sores) and discharges from the ear, eye or nose. People known or suspected to be infected with, or carrying, a disease or illness transmissible through food shall be prevented from handling food or materials which come into contact with food. In food-handling areas, personnel with wounds or burns shall be required to cover them with specified dressings. Any lost dressing shall be reported to supervision immediately. Dressings should be brightly coloured and metal detectable where appropriate. Personnel in food production areas shall be required to wash and, where required, sanitize hands; before starting any food-handling activities; immediately after using the toilet or blowing the nose; immediately after handling any potentially contaminated material. Personnel shall be required to refrain from sneezing or coughing over materials or products. Spitting (expectorating) shall be prohibited. Fingernails shall be kept clean and trimmed. A documented policy shall describe the behaviours required of personnel in processing, packing and storage areas. The policy shall at a minimum cover; permissibility of smoking, eating, chewing in designated areas only; control measures to minimize hazards presented by permitted jewellery, such as that worn by personnel in processing and storage areas, taking into account religious, ethnic, medical and cultural imperatives; permissibility of personal items, such as smoking materials and medicines, in designated areas only; prohibition of the use of nail polish, false nails and false eyelashes; prohibition of carrying of writing implements behind the ears; maintenance of personal lockers so that they are kept free from rubbish and soiled clothing; prohibition of storage of product contact tools and equipment in personal lockers.


Rework shall be stored, handled and used in such a way that product safety, quality, traceability and regulatory compliance are maintained. Stored rework shall be protected from exposure to microbiological, chemical or extraneous matter contamination. Segregation requirements for rework (e.g. allergen) shall be documented and met. Rework shall be clearly identified and/or labelled to allow traceability. Traceability records for rework shall be maintained. The rework classification or the reason for rework designation shall be recorded (e.g. product name, production date, shift, line of origin, shelf-life). Where rework is incorporated into a product as an “in-process” step, the acceptable quantity, type and conditions of rework use shall be specified. The process step and method of addition, including any necessary pre-processing stages, shall be defined. Where rework activities involve removing a product from filled or wrapped packages, controls shall be put in place to ensure the removal and segregation of packaging materials and to avoid contamination of the product with extraneous matter.

Product recall procedures

Systems shall be in place to ensure that products failing to meet required food safety standards can be identified, located and removed from all necessary points of the supply chain. A list of key contacts in the event of a recall shall be maintained. Where products are withdrawn due to immediate health hazards, the safety of other products produced under the same conditions shall be evaluated. The need for public warnings shall be considered.


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Materials and products shall be stored in clean, dry, well-ventilated spaces protected from dust, condensation, fumes, odours or other sources of contamination. Effective control of warehousing temperature, humidity and other environmental conditions shall be provided where required by product or storage specifications. It is recommended that where products are stacked, consideration is given to measures necessary to protect the lower layers. Waste materials and chemicals (cleaning products, lubricants, and pesticides) shall be stored separately. A separate area or other means of segregating materials identified as non-conforming shall be provided. Specified stock rotation systems (FIFO/FEFO) shall be observed. Gasoline- or diesel-powered fork-lift trucks shall not be used in food ingredient or product storage areas. Vehicles, conveyances, and containers shall be maintained in a state of repair, cleanliness, and condition consistent with requirements given in relevant specifications. Vehicles, conveyances, and containers shall provide protection against damage or contamination of the product. Control of temperature and humidity shall be applied and recorded where required by the organization. Where the same vehicles, conveyances, and containers are used for food and non-food products, cleaning shall be carried out between loads. Bulk containers shall be dedicated to food use only. Where required by the organization, bulk containers shall be dedicated to a specified material.

Product information and consumer awareness

Information shall be presented to consumers in such a way as to enable them to understand its importance and make informed choices. Information may be provided by labelling or other means, such as company websites and advertisements, and may include storage, preparation and serving instructions applicable to the product.

 Food defence, biovigilance, and bioterrorism

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Each establishment shall assess the hazard to products posed by potential acts of sabotage, vandalism or terrorism and shall put in place proportional protective measures. Potentially sensitive areas within the establishment shall be identified, mapped, and subjected to access control. Where feasible, access should be physically restricted by use of locks, electronic card key or alternative systems. 

These are the basic requirements of PRP try these at your facility today.

Failure Mode and Effects Analysis why it is so real…

Though we plan projects/ improvements/ developments up to perfection, because of the practical nature of the 6Ms (Man, Machine, Material, Method, Measurement, Mother Nature), No matter how much effort goes into making sure something works as intended 100% of the time, things can/ will/ may go wrong. Project team can sit around and wait for something to go wrong, or we can anticipate problems before they happen and reduce the risk of failure – that is what an FMEA is. Same as the HACCP, Environmental Impact Assessments, H&S Risk Assessments, Social Assessments, and Energy Assessment, FMEA identifies and evaluates potential failures and their effects, so it is a proactive tool that guides a team through a series of steps and delivers a comprehensive analysis of potential failures and their corresponding effects. Also in the later stages of the FMEA, these are prioritized based on a Risk Priority (RP) that is a function of the severity of the failure, the likelihood of it occurring and the ability to detect it before it happens.

Basic example for FMEA Criteria

When an organization starts using FMEAs, they are typically done on existing products or processes. However, they are most powerful when used on new products or processes. They will have their biggest impact by addressing unexpected problems before they occur. Detail orientation and the capacity of the involvers to do imagine possible failures, and risks are the basics of FMEA, which is a team activity; ineffective when done by just one person. The rich input needed for FMEAs depend on the knowledge of multi-disciplinary team, from different scopes, so less details as input will yield uncertain output. Because FMEA is a tool to identify and prioritize the risks associated with potential failures and effects of those failures, team can work to mitigate the most serious risks. As improvements are made, the failures and effects addressed need to be reassessed to make sure the level of risk has been lowered to an acceptable level. Potential failures and their associated effects are usually rated on three scales; Severity, Occurrence and Detection. Accurate rankings on each of these scales relies on the team understanding and being able to relate to these ranking scales. Sometimes this scale can expand as Impact Severity, Possibility of Occurrence, and Detection, Legal Compliances, and also the Quantity of faults may occur. Usually SSGB guys are developing criteria for FEMA, and SSBB do evaluate the suitability and the depth of details. SSYB are involving in documentation parts and data collection usually. Based on the resources sometimes highest qualified SSGB person may do the criteria evaluation.  Organization specific meaningful ranking scales make the FMEA easier and faster to use and the resulting evaluations will be more accurate. Customized ranking scales need to be developed before the first FMEA is conducted. Do an FMEA to satisfy auditors and stick it in the drawer until your next audit and you have just wasted a rich source of information that can make your products and processes more robust. In addition to using the FMEA to identify the most pressing improvement opportunities they should also be revisited when changes have been made to see if new, unacceptably high risks have been introduced. FMEAs can also serve as the basis of a Control Plan. Control Plan provides specific instructions on how each component is to measured and monitored.

So FMEA can benifict your organization by improve product/process reliability and quality, Increase customer satisfaction, Early identification and elimination of potential product/process failure modes, Prioritize product/process deficiencies, Capture engineering/organization knowledge, Emphasizes problem prevention. Try this handy management tool for your organizational developments too.

Consultation and participation of workers (ISO 45001:2018)

Involving respective subordinates for the improvement of a system is a key factor for the success of it. This involvement ensures clear lines of communication, consultation and participation of workers with sufficient allocation of time and resources. ISO 45001, the latest standard scheme for occupational health & safety, a grand upgrade of previous OHSAS 18001:2007 considers this aspect under the clause no 5.4 due to the criticality of the requirement.

 Organization to ensure consultation and participation of workers include contractors and other interested parties appropriateness as persons carrying out work under the organization’s control, where relevant. Though management and executive personal involves in the planning, identification, and risk mitigation proceedings usually, the true involvers; the  workers contributing to the OH&S management system and is a vital requirement of productive OH&S management as it enables the decision making process streamlined and detail oriented.

For the effective involvement of the worker level persons, provide adequate training and resources, clear – understandable and relevant information about the OH&S management system, while respond to worker suggestions, encourage consultation with non-managerial workers relating to a range of OH&S issues, activities and decisions, Top management’s mind set on OH&S oriented operations, is important.

NQA Suggested methods of promoting consultation and participation of workers as follows:

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  1.  Involving workers for accidents investigation
  2. Allow workers to Identify, and suggest elimination methods of hazards (risk assessments)
  3. Periodic meetings with senior leadership to discuss processes including OH&S issues
  4. Safety committee meetings with worker representatives
  5. Development of training Tool Box Talks and presentations (This may include training tools for workers outside of your organization such as visiting contractors)
  6. Development of Safe Systems of Work and Work Instructions
  7. Cross communication between sites within the organization
  8. Near miss reporting schemes with follow up actions including root cause analysis
  1. Site tours
  2. Open door policy to talk to an H&S or HR representative
  3. OH&S suggestion boxes
  4. Communication – Notice boards, newsletters, email, blogs, health promotion campaigns

Once a selection of methods of consultation and participation of workers has been chosen, consider documenting the methodologies within a process. This will enable the organization to periodically check the process within your audit programme to ensure any identified requirements have been fulfilled.

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