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EmmE

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 05:17 AM

Hello Everyone,

As I am relatively new to Food Safety and Quality Management, can anyone suggested some short term courses of education?

I have no prior background nor experience with FSQM but have been assigned the task of acheiving BRC Certification. I am the first person in the company to hold this position, as there were'nt any quality procedures in place prior. The extent of my experience has been researching and developing programs based off 3rd party auditing criteria and Google. Failed the first audit to lack of documentation, passed the 3 subsequent audits.

I have learned tons from reading through standard expectations, but would like to obtain a deeper knowledge base as I am sure my current knowledge is just barely the scratching the surface. As I cannot afford the luxury of going off to earn a degree, I would like to participate in short term educational courses to get me where I need to be. I would really like to bring the company up to where it should be and maybe stay in this line of work, advancing to bigger and better things.

Thanks in advance, I appreciate all replies.



Charles.C

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 05:55 AM

Dear EmmE,

I guess, as usual, it all depends. A little info might be helpful -

What is yr current technical background ?
(eg are you now familiar with things like HACCP ?)

as there were'nt any quality procedures in place prior.


!! What types of food does yr company make ? Hopefully not RTE :smile:

What type of audit did you already pass ?

Do you hv a budget > zero ?

One obvious answer to yr BRC commment is to use a consultant but that (and perhaps the degree of involvement) depends on things like the previous queries.

Rgds / Charles.C

Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


EmmE

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 11:21 PM

Charles,

Yes, unfortunately RTE. The company did have some basic food handling practices, but not one stitch of documentation, written policies or formal training. It was basically our manager coming up to us and telling us we should not be doing that (I say Us, because I came from the production crew). I now have several programs and policies in place but feel like there is something I am missing, I am driven to do more.

I have completed an introductory HACCP course and have educational materials from a local University which I have studied. The only other course/seminar I have attended was on Environmental Monitoring. The audits I have passed are Product Safety, Quality and Food Defense against the standards and guidelines of current Good Manufacturing Practices, Codes/NACMF HACCP and Best Industry Practices. I also have a decent knowledge of Labeling and Nutritional Guidelines, including manual computation of nutritional and ingredient information based on specs.

I have a budget of $0. So any education courses will come out of my own pocket. This is partially why I'm debating whether to stay in this field or not. I don't know if it is financially worth it (I currently get peanuts, production members are earning more than I). I don't know if I will be able to compete with others who have degrees in this field. I do however enjoy this field and would like to remain in this line of work.



Charles.C

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 02:39 AM

Dear EmmE,

I’m not in the USA so my local knowledge is unfortunately nil but in general, one choice is presumably between on-line courses (free or otherwise) and other varieties. Any directly useful options may depend on yr current industry (??), for example in the seafood business there is a recognised on-line course (not free) which results (I think) in a usfda recognised qualification as a HACCP “exponent”.

As far as BRC is specifically concerned, I forgot to ask if you hv a copy of the standard (?). Assuming yes, you will observe that the “theoretical” content is primarily derived from (a) GMP, (b) (Codex) HACCP, © ISO 9001, (d) other items perceived as particularly relating to the retail business (occasionally UK oriented perhaps).
From yr post I daresay you can do (a,b) OK since I presume you hv already generated (validated / verified / audited) HACCP plans for yr products, © can, if necessary, be done from self-learning on the net + yr actual process procedures, eg one presentation could be via Quality Manual / Quality Procedures Manual, ISO structured Management System (all as appropriate to the requirements of BRC standard), (d) will probably again depend on what you are actually doing. If you want an example of BRC oriented HACCP / various GMP etc procedures, try the downloadable zip hygiene package which Simon uploaded to the Document Section.

Hopefully people in the USA (or wherever) may know more about courses than me. Anybody ???

Rgds / Charles.C


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


EmmE

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Posted 01 July 2010 - 08:59 AM

Thanks Charles,

I do have a copy of the BRC standard and will look for the Hygiene Policy you suggested. FTR, i am in confections (chocolate).



Charles.C

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Posted 01 July 2010 - 09:10 PM

Dear EmmE,

this is the link -

http://www.ifsqn.com...indpost__p__220

There are quite a lot of other interesting items in the "Document Exchange" section.

Rgds / Charles.C


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


Cathy

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 12:41 AM

What type of food do you produce? Is it FSIS or FDA regulatesd? There are some free webinars and podcasts you can use. Check the government websites for FSIS and FDA. Also check the websites of some of the certification bodies - I think Eagle Registrations has some free information and TUV Sud / TUV America has some on food safety and recallas as well.


Cathy Crawford, HACCP Consulting Group
http://haccpcg.com/

GMO

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 01:34 PM

Lol, it looks like confectioners in the states are no better then on food safety??? Posted Image

Seriously, on pay, if it's anything like the UK, you have to be better qualified and get paid less than production. I am constantly complained to about this from my staff.

To acheive BRC, ideally I'd get to Level 3 (intermediate) HACCP or the US equivalent and Level 4 Food Hygiene or the US equivalent. I'm not sure if you have these qualifications though. In the UK they would cost around £500 and £1000 to get the two respectively and you probably could do them by distance learning.

However, that said, if there is no training budget to ensure you have the knowledge to implement BRC as a FSQMS, then your company will surely get a major non conformance immediately due to lack of management commitment!



Zeeshan

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 12:42 PM

Hello Everyone,

As I am relatively new to Food Safety and Quality Management, can anyone suggested some short term courses of education?

I have no prior background nor experience with FSQM but have been assigned the task of acheiving BRC Certification. I am the first person in the company to hold this position, as there were'nt any quality procedures in place prior. The extent of my experience has been researching and developing programs based off 3rd party auditing criteria and Google. Failed the first audit to lack of documentation, passed the 3 subsequent audits.

I have learned tons from reading through standard expectations, but would like to obtain a deeper knowledge base as I am sure my current knowledge is just barely the scratching the surface. As I cannot afford the luxury of going off to earn a degree, I would like to participate in short term educational courses to get me where I need to be. I would really like to bring the company up to where it should be and maybe stay in this line of work, advancing to bigger and better things.

Thanks in advance, I appreciate all replies.


Dear EmmE

Food industry is a dynamic sector of business which will, in my opinion, will boost up in near future, so if you have entered in this industry you should think to be attached with it and make your qualification as per demand of this industry. I personally recommend you to go for valuable courses like FSMS Lead Auditor or BRC Lead Auditor. I know these are very expensive but there is no comparison for these. These certification courses not only stamped the authenticity on your knowledge and experience but also elevate your competency and skills related to management systems, HACCP and other areas.

BTW, while surfing on the net I came across with some short online training courses as under. I have not tried any of them except registring to demo on high speed training website.

http://highspeedtraining.co.uk/
http://www.texasfood...tification.com/
http://www.servsafe.com/
http://www.retailfoodalliance.com/
https://www.aibonlin...ine/FoodSafety/

Regards:
M.Zeehsan


EmmE

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Posted 08 September 2010 - 07:28 PM

Thanks for all the input!






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