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3 Steps to Prepare for Unannounced Food Safety Audits


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#1 Lassi @ Safefood 360°

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 10:30 AM

Hi guys,

 

Here's a recent blog that our CEO George Howlett wrote about preparing for unannounced audits.

 

Essentially, the blog argues that preparing for unannounced audits starts with three steps:

  1. Informing senior management
  2. Reviewing your current food safety management system
  3. Leveraging technology

 

What do you think about this advice? Would you add something to this list? And above all - have you been hit by an unannounced audit?

 

Lassi


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#2 Snookie

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 03:50 PM

Coming from a pharmaceutical environment where audits were frequent, constant and never announced, it comes down to living audit ready.  Everyone and that means everyone has know that and live it as well. It has be to ingrained and as reliable as breathing.  In the end it is easier than forgetting it for most of year and then putting a ton of work into getting ready. 

 

Your system will also get stronger as when you are on top of the what is really going on, it forces you to make the changes to be more efficient and effective. 


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#3 George @ Safefood 360°

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 11:45 PM

Hi Snookie - It's interesting that you say it is easier operating under a culture of being audit ready as opposed to putting in significant work before an audit. I think this is where the food industry will go in the near future. It may seem obvious, but keeping the system up to date day by day is always easier.

 

Thanks for the insight.

 

George



#4 fgjuadi

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 02:33 AM

Coming from a pharmaceutical environment where audits were frequent, constant and never announced, it comes down to living audit ready.  Everyone and that means everyone has know that and live it as well. It has be to ingrained and as reliable as breathing.  In the end it is easier than forgetting it for most of year and then putting a ton of work into getting ready. 

 

Your system will also get stronger as when you are on top of the what is really going on, it forces you to make the changes to be more efficient and effective. 

I couldn't agree more - there are no Plant Manager Rules, no Audit rules, no "My Name" rules.   How can I expect employees to take me seriously when I need to teach them something important?   "Make sure you check the metal detector when the auditor is around"  "Make sure you wash your hands if you see an auditor"  :eek_yello:

 

To make sure we're audit ready I'm more into constant, street style mama shaming - I like to point out that uncovered ingredients are  "nasty" or "gross" to the staff and ask if their Mom would be proud they did that or if they woudl let their Mom or kids eat that food.

 

I save "unappealing" and "entering a strange moral ground" for management, and dating temporary repairs and walking by them and making a face gets my machanic moving. 

 

Also if I see something open/uncovered I walk up to it, wait for the operator, pretend a Marylin Monroe sneeze, then cover it. 

 

When I see an open machine guard open I just stop them and close it, but I really want to take some of the industrial red food coloring and throw a mock emerengency Suspyria style. 


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#5 Lassi @ Safefood 360°

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 10:52 AM

Coming from a pharmaceutical environment where audits were frequent, constant and never announced, it comes down to living audit ready.  Everyone and that means everyone has know that and live it as well. It has be to ingrained and as reliable as breathing.  In the end it is easier than forgetting it for most of year and then putting a ton of work into getting ready. 

 

Your system will also get stronger as when you are on top of the what is really going on, it forces you to make the changes to be more efficient and effective. 

 

I know. It's interesting how different requirements simply produce a different culture. At a first glance, adapting to unannounced audits might seem like an impossible task, but once you make some changes to your management system the new culture becomes the new norm and you won't even remember how it was before that. You need to put some energy and effort into getting the organization to follow the new rules in the first place, but maintaining higher audit readiness doesn't mean that you have to spend more energy all the time,

 

audit-readiness.png


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#6 Snookie

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 03:29 PM

I couldn't agree more - there are no Plant Manager Rules, no Audit rules, no "My Name" rules.   How can I expect employees to take me seriously when I need to teach them something important?   "Make sure you check the metal detector when the auditor is around"  "Make sure you wash your hands if you see an auditor"  :eek_yello:

 

It is important to note that experienced auditors can generally tell when an employees action are the result of nervousness or that it is not a routine event and is done for their benefit. 

 

Living audit ready is the same concept as airplanes and rockets.  It takes massive amounts of fuel to get the craft airborne.  But once at the right altitude, the fuel usage drops dramatically.  So get the facility in the air at the right altitude and keep it there.  In the long run its safer and easier. 

 

Magenta I had to laugh when you talked about the red dye.  Employees were not getting some important food safety concepts in a facility I was at.  Nothing was working not training, not disciplinary action, so during a training session I had a audio loop of people vomiting running in the background.  After a few minutes, a few people were getting a bit gray and green and asked if I could turn it off.  I told them that when they did not follow the rules this was what would happen to the people eating our food and our customers would not just be able to turn it off.  it was amazing how compliance soared after that.  Drastic I know, but it worked. 


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#7 cazyncymru

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 03:54 PM

Magenta, you crease me! I have an image of Marilyn Monroe walking around my factory, but somehow I don't think my operators would notice her sneezing!

 

:roflmao:

 

PS can we have a Marilyn emoticon???


Edited by cazyncymru, 13 March 2014 - 03:54 PM.


#8 Snookie

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 09:12 PM

 

PS can we have a Marilyn emoticon???

 

I agree  :biggrin:


Edited by Snookie, 13 March 2014 - 09:15 PM.

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