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Need to develop a HACCP plan for Greek yogurt

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#1 ELV

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Posted 01 June 2016 - 11:13 PM

Hello community members,

 

I have a small family restaurant in Wisconsin and we've been making homemade Greek yogurt for 40+ years. Last week our health inspector informed me that we need to come up with an HACCP plan for our yogurt making process and we have until August to do so and get it approved, otherwise we will not be allowed to make our yogurt anymore. 

 

I have no experience with HACCP plans and don't even know where to begin. I've done some research online and haven't found much Wisconsin-specific information regarding what an HACCP plan really is and how to write one, or where to go to have one written. It's all quite overwhelming.

 

Can anyone give me some tips (in layman terms!) and help point me in the right direction? Thank you very much in advance for your help.

 

Erin V.



#2 Dr.Khan

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Posted 02 June 2016 - 01:46 AM

Hi ELV

 

you need a very simple HACCP plan. The plan usually consists of the following

 

1. Management Statement

2. HACCP Team

3. Scope - in your case it is just making & storage of Greek Type of yogurt from milk, 

4. Process Flow Diagram -writing down each step of the process in making yogurt

5. Hazards Analysis - list of things which can go wrong in each step

6. Hazard audit table - description of what you will do to control the identified hazards (things that can go wrong)

7. Validation schedule

8. Support programs 1. Cleaning schedule for the yogurt making area, equipment 2. calibration of thermometer if you use one. 3twice ayear conducting audit of the plan to review it that it is working ok etc

 

Kind regards

Dr. Humaid Khan

Managing Director

Halal International Services

Sydney Australia.

We work Globally



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#3 Charles.C

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Posted 02 June 2016 - 06:13 AM

Hello community members,

 

I have a small family restaurant in Wisconsin and we've been making homemade Greek yogurt for 40+ years. Last week our health inspector informed me that we need to come up with an HACCP plan for our yogurt making process and we have until August to do so and get it approved, otherwise we will not be allowed to make our yogurt anymore. 

 

I have no experience with HACCP plans and don't even know where to begin. I've done some research online and haven't found much Wisconsin-specific information regarding what an HACCP plan really is and how to write one, or where to go to have one written. It's all quite overwhelming.

 

Can anyone give me some tips (in layman terms!) and help point me in the right direction? Thank you very much in advance for your help.

 

Erin V.

 

Hi Erin,

 

It sounds like  yr yechnical background / support / resources may be "limited".

 

Haccp usually requires some technical background and a team effort although small teams may be auditorially acceptable depending on who this presentation is actually for (?).

 

The typical forum response to an opening post like yours is to recommend  a training course for haccp (no offence intended). Or a consultant. Or both.

 

 I have given a basic "generic" reply below  for yr product but the degree of detail  may depend on who is actually requesting yr haccp plan (?).

 

 

A model haccp plan (FSSC22000 standard) for yr product is described here (yr spec./process may not be exactly the same of course) -

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...o-22000-73-744/

 

the final (FSSC) haccp plan (see excel sheet  at 2nd link below) is available here -

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...ge-7#entry50651

 

The above excel presentation (ISO-type haccp) may be over-complex  if you only wish for a traditional  (eg Codex/NACMCF) haccp plan. An example of the latter is at Post 86 of same thread.

 

Detailed manuals for "how-to-do" traditional haccp are also freely available on this forum, eg - 

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...le/#entry101966


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


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#4 ELV

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 03:59 PM

Thank you for your input. I obviously cannot do this myself. It's all a foreign language to me. Do you know where I should begin looking for someone who can write the plan for me?

 

Are all small restaurants now required to do this? We make yogurt from store-bought milk that has already been pasteurized and only use it in dishes prepared in our restaurant. We do not distribute. 

 

Thanks,

 

Erin



#5 Charles.C

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 05:53 PM

Thank you for your input. I obviously cannot do this myself. It's all a foreign language to me. Do you know where I should begin looking for someone who can write the plan for me?

 

Are all small restaurants now required to do this? We make yogurt from store-bought milk that has already been pasteurized and only use it in dishes prepared in our restaurant. We do not distribute. 

 

Thanks,

 

Erin

 

Hi Erin,

 

I sympathise.

 

Unfortunately I'm not in USA so no idea about the local situation. My guess is a basic HACCP plan may suffice but presumably someone with HACCP knowledge will need to be involved. And maybe haccp-related forms also.

 

Hopefully some US posters here may be able to answer yr restaurant query. Please wait a little.

 

Anyone ?


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


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#6 Wowie

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 06:51 PM

I'm going through Wisconsin's Food Code ( http://docs.legis.wi...hs/110/196_.pdf) right now to see what I can find for you.

 

You can go to http://food.unl.edu/...ments-and-links to get a very basic understanding of what they are looking for, as well as some "model forms" you can use. 

 

Do you monitor the temperature, time, etc of the yogurt while making it?



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#7 ELV

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 07:27 PM

Thanks Wowie. Yes, we monitor all of that to make sure the product is consistent every time. 



#8 Wowie

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 08:54 PM

The documentation will be easy to walk you through if you are already performing the steps, and know why you're performing the steps.

 

Can you download and complete this form with some of my (not-so-helpful?) hints? It's just some preliminary information needed to get you started. The community will be able to help you get through this, so you don't lose your yogurt business.

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...fsqn-yogurtdoc/



#9 Charles.C

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 09:37 PM

Hi Wowie,

 

You're doing great ( :clap:)  but shouldn't there be a fermentation step in there somewhere ?

 

Or is that too high-tech ?  :smile:


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#10 Wowie

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Posted 08 June 2016 - 12:28 PM

Hi Wowie,

 

You're doing great ( :clap:)  but shouldn't there be a fermentation step in there somewhere ?

 

Or is that too high-tech ?  :smile:

 

 

Yep! That was just a "Here's the basic set up" for them to get started. I didn't even think about it!



#11 Tony-C

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Posted 09 June 2016 - 05:34 AM

Hi Erin,

 

I'm sure we can help here.

 

Usually key items in yogurt manufacture are:

ingredient quality/safety

pasteurization to kill pathogens

filtration to remove foreign bodies

achieving a low pH (high acidity) within a certain timescale to prevent the growth of pathogens

hygiene of personnel/equipment to prevent contamination of the product

 

 

Please provide a 'process flow' - the steps to making the yogurt. Also a list of ingredients and the stages they are added and confirm the packaging or what you are filling the finished yogurt into.

 

Kind regards,

 

Tony



#12 ELV

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Posted 09 June 2016 - 04:18 PM

The documentation will be easy to walk you through if you are already performing the steps, and know why you're performing the steps.

 

Can you download this form with some of my (not-so-helpful?) hints? It's just some preliminary information needed to get you started. The community will be able to help you get through this, so you don't lose your yogurt business.

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...fsqn-yogurtdoc/

I've tried downloading this, but unfortunately I don't have the permissions to do so since I'm new on this forum. Would you mind forwarding it to my xxxxxx? 

I can't thank you, and this whole community, enough for being so willing to help me out. 


Edited by Charles.C, 09 June 2016 - 04:21 PM.
apologies but emails are spam magnets


#13 Charles.C

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Posted 09 June 2016 - 04:27 PM

I've tried downloading this, but unfortunately I don't have the permissions to do so since I'm new on this forum. Would you mind forwarding it to my xxxxxx? 

I can't thank you, and this whole community, enough for being so willing to help me out. 

 

Hi Erin,

 

Sorry about hiccup.

 

I have sent a pm to Wowie.

 

Please wait a bit.


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#14 Tony-C

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Posted 09 June 2016 - 05:29 PM

I've tried downloading this, but unfortunately I don't have the permissions to do so since I'm new on this forum. Would you mind forwarding it to my xxxxxx? 

I can't thank you, and this whole community, enough for being so willing to help me out. 

 

 

Hi Erin,

 

Sorry about hiccup.

 

I have sent a pm to Wowie.

 

Please wait a bit.

 

I have sent the file to Erin via email. It is generic and I suggest that it is best to follow advice submitted on the forum so far as per my post previously

 

Kind regards,

 

Tony



#15 ELV

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Posted 09 June 2016 - 05:39 PM

Hi Erin,

 

I'm sure we can help here.

 

Usually key items in yogurt manufacture are:

ingredient quality/safety

pasteurization to kill pathogens

filtration to remove foreign bodies

achieving a low pH (high acidity) within a certain timescale to prevent the growth of pathogens

hygiene of personnel/equipment to prevent contamination of the product

 

 

Please provide a 'process flow' - the steps to making the yogurt. Also a list of ingredients and the stages they are added and confirm the packaging or what you are filling the finished yogurt into.

 

Kind regards,

 

tony

Hi Tony,

Thanks for your response. Here's our process:
 

1.       Receive 40-120 gallons milk 1x per week from distributor (depending on season – summer is very busy and winter is very slow for us)

2.       Check milk temp to make sure its below 41 degrees F

3.       Transfer milk to walk-in cooler


To make yogurt:

4.       Calibrate thermometer in ice/water slush

5.       Pour 40 gallons whole milk in yogurt kettle (our milk is already homogenized and pasteurized)

6.       Stir milk every few minutes until it reaches 190 degrees F

7.       Cool to 115 degrees F (our kettle uses cold water to cool the milk. This step usually takes about 1 hour)

8.       When at 115 degrees F, turn off cold water

9.       Pour 2.5 gallons milk into a 5 gallon bucket

10.   Slowly temper 2 quarts yogurt into 2.5 gallons of milk using stainless steel whisk (we use yogurt from the last batch, or store-bought yogurt as our “culture” for the new batch – if this won’t be approved or if there’s a better Greek yogurt culture, we can get a dry culture, etc.)

11.   Slowly pour 2.5 gallons of milk/culture mix back into yogurt kettle and stir well with drill (we use a drill with mixing rod attached to it)

12.   Place a spacer bucket in the kettle and close/lock kettle lid (we had a spacer bucket designed to sit in the kettle so after the yogurt ferments we can put ice in the spacer bucket in the middle of the yogurt to help it cool quicker)

13.   Let yogurt ferment in locked kettle undisturbed for 12-18 hours until yogurt forms (we need help with this step since we base the finished product on taste and texture rather than exact time, like it should be done – see notes below)

14.   Wash whisk, drill mixing rod, thermometer and 5 gallon bucket

15.   Once yogurt has formed, add ice to spacer bucket and turn on cold water

16.   Let yogurt cool in kettle for 2 hours

17.   Once cooled, pour yogurt into 4 five-gallon cotton bags

18.   Hook yogurt bags onto sides of large push cart container

19.   Put push cart container in walk-in cooler and let yogurt bags strain in cooler

20.   Wash yogurt kettle and spacer bucket, dry both, store spacer bucket in kettle and close/lock lid

21.   Pour strained yogurt into 1 large bin and squeeze excess yogurt out of bags

22.   Place bin in walk-in cooler

23.   Wash yogurt bags and hang to dry

24.   Empty excess whey from push cart container and wash

We were asked to develop a HACCP plan just for our Greek yogurt process, which involves the above steps.

Though we weren’t asked to develop a plan for the next step, from there we make tzatziki by adding cucumbers, oil, vinegar, lemon juice, salt and garlic to the yogurt. We put the sauce into 1/3 size 6.5 quart stainless steel pans, cover the pans with plastic wrap and write the date the sauce was made on the plastic wrap. Then the 1/3 size pans go back into the walk-in cooler (FIFO style) until we’re ready to use the product. We also portion a very small amount of Greek yogurt (before the sauce is made) into 16 ounce plastic containers with lids, which we sell very few of at the restaurant.

This is the process my parents brought from Greece when they immigrated and the process we’ve used for the past 40+ years in our restaurant. We’ve never had a health issue with it, but I don’t know that the health department will approve our process since the yogurt ferments for so long. Since I’m taking over the restaurant, I want to do things right. We’re more than willing to change our process so long as we can use the same equipment and we can still make a great product that tastes the same. For example, if someone knows the exact minimum amount of time it takes Greek yogurt to form and have the same semi-sour Greek yogurt flavor, I’d like to know so we can be more consistent, rather than waiting 12-18 hours and relying on an individual to determine whether or not it is finished based on taste and texture. Or if using a different culture or process will cause it to ferment quicker, we’ll go for it.

Please let me know your thoughts, and thank you so much for your help.



#16 ELV

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Posted 09 June 2016 - 11:02 PM

I just spoke with a yogurt cultures company. I'm going to buy a commercial cook and hold oven so we can hold the fermentation at 110 degrees for a set amount of time, which they said needs to be a minimum of 6 hours and a maximum of 18 hours (the longer we hold - up to 18 hours - the more sour flavor the yogurt will have, and Greek yogurt should be a little sour). I hope we'll be allowed to ferment the product for the full 18 hours, but I haven't been able to find any maximum fermentation time guidelines for the State of Wisconsin. I'm also going to purchase cultures from this company rather than buy yogurt from the store or use yogurt from our previous batch, so we'll get a more consistent product. 



#17 Tony-C

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 05:07 AM

I just spoke with a yogurt cultures company. I'm going to buy a commercial cook and hold oven so we can hold the fermentation at 110 degrees for a set amount of time, which they said needs to be a minimum of 6 hours and a maximum of 18 hours (the longer we hold - up to 18 hours - the more sour flavor the yogurt will have, and Greek yogurt should be a little sour). I hope we'll be allowed to ferment the product for the full 18 hours, but I haven't been able to find any maximum fermentation time guidelines for the State of Wisconsin. I'm also going to purchase cultures from this company rather than buy yogurt from the store or use yogurt from our previous batch, so we'll get a more consistent product. 

 

Hi Erin,

 

That is a good idea, a good strong culture will provide an acidic product and work quite quickly so reducing the risks associated with slow incubation.

 

I have drafted a process flow for you with an idea of hazards and typical controls:

 

Attached File  Greek Yoghurt Process Flow.xlsx   13.45KB   55 downloads

 

Kind regards,

 

Tony



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