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#1 PegK

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Posted 18 January 2020 - 01:54 AM

Hello Everyone,

 

This is my first post.  I finally broke the ice!  I have had many questions before, but researching thru the archives usually answered them. 

Thank you for sharing your knowledge!

 

Background info: I started a new job as QA for a facility that produces pasteurized dairy products. 40-60 employees (as production dictates), that are in need of a positive food safety culture .  QA, personnel, procedures, and expectations seem to have changed every few years. Production is growing faster than food safety.  (Wondering what I signed on for, but I see it as a challenge)

 

Going thru past records many of the same issues I am witnessing now, have previously been documented by regulators, auditors, and FDA.  There seems to have been training videos for staff; everyone signs off, documented training is forwarded to satisfy the debit, and every year, same issues, same debits.    

 

So, apparently the training was either not effective, or not enforced. Seeing the culture there, I can visualize them watching the video, signing the log-in sheet and walking right back into production doing the same old, same old.

 

The owner rules (pushes) production on a fear level. Yelling at them, threatening their jobs. 

That's not how I roll (he doesn't intimidate me, I'm too old to put up with it), so he is my first challenge. 

1st rule... NO ONE goes into production without proper attire.  Uniform or lab coat, boots, and hair nets.  This was for him.  Start at the top!

 

I'm incorporating equipment and procedure changes for ease, speed, and a more thorough job on some of the manual labor tasks, eg. COP wash tank and rinse stations for equipment.   More hand sinks at "convenient" locations.  Pumping whey out thru enclosed system instead of flooding the floor.  The drains can't handle the volume of whey, which adds a layer of fluid for production workers to walk thru; the whey aerosols off their boots onto neighboring equipment, and degrades the concrete floor.  

 

They want to work toward SQF certification to meet customer expectations, so this is my leverage to implement positive changes.  

 

I need staff to "buy-in" because they want to produce a better product:

 

I've implemented weekly 15-20 min group meetings.  Right now, I am only making verbal corrections to pockets of employees as issues are addressed within production. The issues I witness will form the topics for the weekly group meetings.  I just have to make it engaging enough that they understand the potential consequences and hopefully the changes will stick.  

 

Topic this week : Aerosol  from hose nozzles, high pressure spray on equipment and floors, foot traffic

 

Anyone have interesting "pictures" to help communicate the hazzards of cross-contamination from over-spray?

 

The comment from the production is... "It's all pasteurized", and they assume it's invincible. 

   

What has worked in your experience?  What are some good IFSQN posts, web links, videos, power points.... anything, everything!   Words of wisdom to help me form interesting or interactive training sessions.

 

To me, exposed product is like an open petri-dish, but they wouldn't make the connection  (Huh... maybe putting out a petri dish would show them, or letting them put the dish somewhere, with their name on it,  then group meet and "show and tell" the results? How long would I leave the dishes exposed? Incubate or leave at room temp? Suggestions please)

 

What are some good mental images, or other interactive projects I can present, to help them understand how easy it is to cross-contaminate product or food contact surfaces?  How microbes love dairy products as much as we do.  Anything to help me tie it all together in 15 minutes!

 

Thanks

PK

 



#2 SQFconsultant

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Posted 18 January 2020 - 05:29 AM

Welcome PegK.

 

I read the couple of sections and thought immediately you might be working at a company we attempted to assist on getting into SQF.

 

They were ok to spend the money on the engagement for development - but not on actually implementing, because of ownership issues where food safety took back burner.

 

The whey flooding the floor as a tip off that you might be at the company that we tried our best to assist.

 

Regardless of location, I understand what you up against - challenging indeed, that is however the fun of it.

 

Best to you.


Warm regards,

 

 

Glenn Oster

Glenn Oster Consulting, LLC

 

 

 

SQF System Development & Implementation Consultants

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#3 PegK

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Posted 18 January 2020 - 01:44 PM

They have the makings of a decent food safety plan, but are not following it.  Management backing will be a hurdle. (Do what you have to do QA, just don't slow production)

 

I'm coming from a plant that had a strong food safety culture, to one that has none.  I'm going to learn a lot from this new job!

 

What type of training sessions do larger facilities have?  Daily meetings, Weekly, Monthly?  

 

How do you get information to all staff?  One big group in-between production runs, or repeat the training to smaller groups?

 

Train the managers and they train their staff?







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: aerosol, overspray, employee behavior, open product, hose, water pressure, contamination, cheese production, food safety culture, Training

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