It is an international standard specifying requirements for a food safety management system and demonstrates an organization's commitment to food safety. It provides means to demonstrate that an organization is taking the necessary steps to control food safety hazards.
The food safety hazards can occur at any stage in the food chain, it becomes essential on the part of all those in the food supply chain that they exercise adequate controls in manufacturing / processing, handling , packing and distribution of food products.
Food Hazards are of greater concern and may be present in the food at the point of consumption. Therefore a combined effort to reduce / mitigate these hazards by all parties through the food chain is essential. Safe Food is the need of the hour.
The standard stresses on the communication along the food chain 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 supplies 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 also essential to ensure effective interactive communication throughout the chain in order to deliver safe food products to the final consumer.
ISO 22000:2005 applies to all organizations, regardless of their size, that impact the food chain. This includes ingredient suppliers, equipment manufacturers, package suppliers, service providers, farmers, food processors, and catering and retailing organizations.
The standard has three parts:
1. Good manufacturing practices (GMP) or pre-requisite programs requirements
2. HACCP principles
3. Management system requirements
ISO 22000 has been aligned with ISO 9001 in order to enhance the compatibility of the two standards and 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 assists in organizing the knowledge required to establish an effective combination of control measures.
ISO 22000 requires that hazards that may be associated with the type of process and facilities used, are identified and assessed and provides the means to determine the strategy to be used to ensure hazard control by combining the prerequisite programmes and the HACCP plan.