To keep yourselves and your customers safe, it is vital that you and your team have HACCP training so that you are safely following your HACCP plan.
Juice HACCP & seafood HACCP training - why is it needed?
As we have gone through in previous articles, any food business must have a Hazard Analysis Critical Control ...
As we have gone through in previous articles, any food business must have a Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) plan built around the 7 principles of HACCP in order to run their business. HACCP training helps to ensure that your team understands their roles and responsibilities concerning food health and safety. Although there is a vast amount of online training you can find for HACCP training, you should be aware that some industry types require specialized HACCP plans, and thus, you should also select a training specific to this type. This article will go through two of the main examples of specific HACCP training that you might need to do; seafood and juice. These are two largely different industries, but both pose different particular risks to your clients and have their own HACCP processes and training to ensure your customers are safe.
As always, if you are unsure of whether or not you need a specific HACCP plan or if a general HACCP plan or training will suffice, you should contact your local food regulatory authority, who will let you know!
Your team needs to have HACCP training if you are working in the seafood industry. As seafood poses such a high risk of foodborne illnesses, you must ensure that any seafood handled by your company is safe when being processed. Here are some examples of seafood products:
- Fish (freshwater, saltwater, farmed, and wild)
- Smoked fish
- Shrimp, crab, and lobster
- Eel, squid, and octopus
- Fish oil
- Shellfish (mussels, clams, oysters, and scallops)
- Canned tuna, crab, sardines, mackerel, anchovies, etc
- Sea urchin
- Fish sauce
- Turtle, frog, alligator, and shark
Why does seafood have its own HACCP process?
Seafood HACCP regulation was introduced due to the specific threats to food health and safety posed by seafood as opposed to other food products. For example, one part of your HACCP plan and HACCP training will be testing the water that your seafood is coming from. If the water is too toxic, your seafood is no longer safe to be processed and sold.
Seafood is susceptible to a range of contaminants, and therefore a seafood HACCP training is a must for your team if you are working in the seafood industry. The FDA provides a huge amount of information on the hazards of fish and fishery products, free for you to read before choosing your HACCP training provider.
What are the risks associated with seafood?
The main food safety risk associated with seafood is foodborne illnesses caused by microorganisms or naturally occurring toxins. Most illnesses originating from seafood are usually related to improper harvesting, handling, storage, or preparation. This is one of the reasons that a specific HACCP plan and HACCP training must be implemented when working with seafood.
Another significant risk related to seafood is that many seafood products are consumed raw or partially cooked. These are the most likely to cause foodborne illnesses and must be stored, prepared, and sold in the safest way possible.
Are there exemptions from the seafood HACCP regulation?
There are some exemptions from the seafood HACCP regulation. Retail establishments, fishing vessels, transporters who do not process the seafood, and practices on the harvest vessel to prepare seafood specifically for storage onboard are not required to operate under a HACCP system. Hazards associated with the harvest and transportation of seafood are required to be evaluated by the receiver. If you are unsure whether or not you must follow seafood HACCP regulation, contact your local regulatory authority for more information.
Juice is another area that requires a specific HACCP plan and specific HACCP training. This is due to several foodborne illness outbreaks in the 1990s caused by juices in the United States. As juices are usually prepared using raw fruits and vegetables, they are susceptible to many different potential hazards, particularly biological hazards.
Why does juice have its own HACCP process?
Juice has its own HACCP regulation as there is such a high possibility for the juice to become contaminated or dangerous at different stages of the production process. For example, if there are animals close to fruit growing, their manure or feces will also be present and can easily cause pathogens in the food - then used to produce the juice. Another example of how it can easily become contaminated is if you have an orchard on land that was previously used for an industry that used lead. The lead will still be present in the soil and will contaminate the produce. Part of your juice HACCP process will be to check the ground where the fruit or vegetable is growing, as well as the water nearby.
Another point to remember is that although many foodborne illnesses have come from juices with high acidity, there is also a risk of illnesses being caused by low-acidity juices such as carrot juice. Essentially no matter what type of juice you are producing, you will need to follow your juice HACCP plan to ensure your customer’s safety. The variety of possibilities for your juice to become contaminated is why you must ensure you provide your team with juice HACCP training.
Are there exemptions from juice HACCP regulation?
There are several exemptions from juice HACCP regulation. For example, retail providers are not required to process juice under a HACCP system, although they must label the products warning customers of potential dangers.
Ingredients other than juice that come from fruit and vegetables such as citrus oil are not subject to the juice HACCP regulation. The juice HACCP regulation applies only to juice sold either as juice or for use as an ingredient in beverages and not to any other fruit or vegetable product. This also means that you are also exempt if you are using juice as an ingredient in something like candy. If you are unsure of whether or not you are exempt from juice HACCP regulation, reach out to your local regulatory authority for more information.
Read more about the difference between a HACCP certification course and a HACCP training course.