You've been extremely helpful thus far, and I just wanted to extend a question in hopes someone here will be able to assist me.
I guess I'm in an odd position. I'm great at technical, IT, and related problems. I ended up partially involved in the food safety side due to helping our HACCP officer with document generation. He isn't great on the PC side, so I did proof reading and generated some of the more interesting flow charts, etc.
Now, as a result of this I'm often asked to make COAs, data sheets, and product specifications. My only problem is I'm not entirely sure how these documents differ from one another? If a customer requests a COA, how is that COA meant to differ from a product spec? Can anyone enlighten me? I've asked the HACCP officer, but he actually isn't quite sure himself.
I've attached a "template" of what I've been using as our product specification sheet. We don't really have a lab to run any kind of tests. I often see some COAs describe moisture tests, etc. Would we be required to get third party to test this, or possibly even buy our own equipment? I've currently just shown that we do some visual inspection. A sample of all produced product is also tested internally in our own test bakery (we produce premix), so perhaps I could list feedback from the test bakery on our COA?
I'm also curious regarding ingredient declaration. I'm putting this on our product labels and product specs. I'm trying to improve how we do this, mainly, I thought one method might be to include the E numbers. I.e. Calcium Carbonate (E300) instead of simply putting Calcium Carbonate. Does this ACTUALLY provide any benefit or am I wasting my time going through the extra effort?
Lastly, regarding declaring ingredients I often run into a problem of my bosses wanting to maintain a blend of openness and confidentiality. Rather than declare the exact enzymes used, for instance, we will simply state "Enzymes". Is this acceptable? If so, how do you determine which ingredients you HAVE to declare and which can be kept "secret" under a general banner like "Flavourants" or "Enzymes"? Is there a set rule?
(Sorry for the stupid questions, guys. I sadly have no background in food technology and I would just like to know I'm somewhere on the right track with these things)