Seven Principles of HACCP Details

The importance of HACCP principles is to ensure that consumers get safe products. HACCP controls the potential hazards in food production and ensures that contaminants (chemical, microbiological, and physical) are eliminated through technology, science, hygiene, and human controls.

Principle 1 - Conduct a Hazard Analysis

This systematic approach to ensure food safety by avoiding hazards starts with conducting a hazard analysis. This is done by determining the potential hazards and control measures that need to be taken.

Principle 2 - Identify the Critical Control Points

Science, technology, hygiene, and human controls eliminate hazards and ensure food safety. To do this, you have to identify the critical control points (CCPs). These are the steps or stages of food production in which employees can apply control.

Principle 3 - Establish Critical Limits

Hazards are to be reduced to acceptable limits or actions taken to ensure their elimination or prevention. The critical limits need to be established. A critical limit is a minimum or maximum value to which an employee must control the hazard.

Principle 4 - Monitor Critical Control Points

The Food Safety and Inspection Services (FSIS) requires that the HACCP plan include monitoring procedures and frequencies. Monitoring of the Critical Control Points is essential in ensuring that the hazards stay within acceptable limits.

Principle 5 - Establish Corrective Action

There are situations in which the hazards may be outside the expected limits. In such cases, employees should take corrective measures. The HACCP plan identifies corrective actions to be done if the critical limit is not met.

Principle 6 - Verification

The verification principle requires that validation of the HACCP plan is effectively done. Employees should meet the aim of eliminating, reducing, or preventing biological, physical, and chemical hazards.

Principle 7 - Recordkeeping

Documentation and recordkeeping of documents are also required for HACCP. Different documents should be created and kept in the HACCP plan, including the hazard analysis and documents in which various records are captured. These records include handling processing deviations and monitoring critical control points, critical limits, and verification activities.

Example of Seven Principles of HACCP

The seven principles of HACCP are applied by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in different sectors. Food safety management guided by these principles is conducted on food outlets, fish and fishery products, meat and poultry products, fresh-cut produce, school food and services, and juice and nectar products. The standard designed to help augment HACCP on issues related to food safety is ISO 22000.

In 1994, there was a proposal to use HACCP in water management. HACCP principles have since been applied and formed the basis of the Water Safety Plan (WSP). Through this, steps are taken to control infectious diseases in the water.