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Is It mandatory to have date in food safety policy

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#1 carine


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Posted 21 June 2019 - 04:16 AM

Hi all, 


As above mentioned, is it mandatory to have date in food safety policy?  

#2 Tony-C


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Posted 21 June 2019 - 04:37 AM

Hi Carine,


Typically, it does not need to be dated but does need to be current, so you might need supporting documentation to prove it is current such as management review records.


BRC Guidance

The policy statement is only a summary and can usually be expressed in a single page. Although it does not need to be dated, it must be current and should therefore be updated when significant policies or senior management change.


The SQF Code doesn’t have any requirements for it to be dated. SQF Guidance advises the review is needed though: The policy statement must be reviewed at least annually by senior management. This review is normally done when the review of the SQF System is undertaken.


For ISO 22000 & the FSSC 22000 Scheme

5.2 Policy 5.2.1 Establishing the food safety policy - does not require the policy to be dated.


GFSI Requirements for Benchmarked Standards

A clear, concise and documented food safety policy statement shall be in place, as well as measurable objectives specifying the extent of the organization’s commitment to meet the food safety needs.


My personal preference is to date it. This serves as a reminder where there are requirements to review at a minimum annually.


Kind regards,



#3 GMO


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Posted 21 June 2019 - 10:23 AM

I suppose whenever there is a question like this I'd try and be devil's advocate (or "the auditor" if you prefer).  If you don't date your policy, how can you prove when it was last reviewed?  Presumably you train or brief your staff in this policy.  How do you know whether the policy has been changed since their last training if you don't date it?  How can you prove to the auditor that it's not the same policy which was put in place 20 years ago and has never been looked at again without a date?


I think not dating it therefore would get you into all kinds of pickle with an auditor so it's not worth the hassle in my opinion.  Once you date it, you can decide a suitable interval for review.  Many factories do it yearly but I don't think any standard mandates that.  A good opportunity though could be during your management review of quality which is conducted as a minimum annually for many standards.

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#4 The Food Scientist

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 02:00 PM

Well you do need proof it's being reviewed and validated every year, right? 

Everything in food is science. The only subjective part is when you eat it. - Alton Brown.

#5 SQFconsultant



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Posted 21 June 2019 - 03:42 PM

I agree with GMO.


While there might not be a rule for "mandatory" dating - I've never seen documents that were not dated 80% of the time and 20% of the time dated in register of documents.


Sometimes there might not be a REQUIREMENT but the Auditor will expect CS.

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