HACCP is an abbreviation for Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point. This food safety standard aims at incorporating preventative measures in the food production process to render it free from biological, chemical and physical hazards. In effect, HACCP food safety laws target overall food safety and hygiene as opposed to only end product inspection for contamination and hygiene lapses. HACCP food safety rules and regulations are applicable to all industries that are directly or indirectly related to the food or pharmaceutical industries including meat processors, fish processors, animal feed processors, farms, dairies, fisheries, bread and cereal manufacturers, beverage producers, canned and frozen food manufacturers, producers of prescription and non prescription drugs, and food service providers such as restaurants and hotels. Undoubtedly, the HACCP food safety rules and regulations have weighty benefits that cannot be ignored. These benefits include reduced complaints and a reduction in negative publicity, enhanced product traceability, improved raw material traceability, superior consumer and buyer confidence, a sustained consistency in internal reviews and inspection criteria and greater compliance with food laws.
A formal training course for the proper implementation of the HACCP food safety rules and regulations must be completed before HACCP food safety laws can be thoroughly and correctly followed. In the United States of America, the American Society of Quality (ASQ) offers a HACCP training course for individuals who want to become HACCP professionals. This HACCP training course is known as the Trained HACCP Auditor (CHA) exam. In the United Kingdom, a HACCP training course, accredited by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA), is offered by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH). The HACCP training qualification is titled as HACCP for Food Manufacturing.
The foundation for the HACCP food safety laws is provided in a set of seven principles formulated by the National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods. These seven principles are listed below: