ISO 22000: 2018 was a “really big step forward” as it meant, for the first time, senior management had to engage in setting the level of risk that a particular food operation wanted to run, said Dr Roy Kirby, global food safety director for Mondelēz.
Kirby, who is also a board member of the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), was giving the keynote address to the sixth European Hygienic Engineering & Design Group (EHEDG) World Congress in London on 22 November.
Incorporate hygienic design
EHEDG is working on a joint project to incorporate hygienic design into GFSI’s prerequisite programme for food safety certification schemes.
Under the revised ISO 22000, introduced in 2005, a firm’s appetite for food safety risk had to be clearly specified, usually as part of its enterprise risk management plans, which assess the effectiveness of existing risk mitigation, Kirby said. “You then end up with a residual level of risk and decide whether you need additional measures or not.”
The new standard also makes continuous improvement central to food safety management policies.
However, he noted that the level of consumer protection offered in different markets is set by regulators in those countries. He used the example of differences in levels of acceptable listeria contamination risk between the US and Europe.
Kirby also revealed GFSI was working on a new version for benchmarking audits to be published in two years’ time. This would incorporate elements of ISO 22000: 2018 and address the increasing number of food safety incidents arising from certified food companies, he added.