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Packaging Supplier Documentation

Packaging Supplier Checklist

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thisusernameisnottaken

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Posted 16 September 2021 - 09:49 PM

hello - I spend all my time in the raw material/ingredient side of quality and food safety and often neglect packaging. I have been tasked with coming up with identifying the required supporting qualification documents for packaging (including primary packaging) as a quick checklist. Any examples of what other food and beverage companies require of their packaging suppliers from an onboarding standpoint would be awesome.  :helpplease:

 

Thank you!



Charles.C

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Posted 17 September 2021 - 02:03 AM

hello - I spend all my time in the raw material/ingredient side of quality and food safety and often neglect packaging. I have been tasked with coming up with identifying the required supporting qualification documents for packaging (including primary packaging) as a quick checklist. Any examples of what other food and beverage companies require of their packaging suppliers from an onboarding standpoint would be awesome.  :helpplease:

 

Thank you!

 

Hi tuint,

 

I'm unclear whether you are seeking a typical Packaging specification(s) or a Packaging Supplier approval program ?

 

if the former, can you be more specific as to the type of packaging ? eg Kraft board, PE bags, PS bags, glass bottles etc


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


Duncan

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Posted 17 September 2021 - 12:38 PM

Hi TUNINT,

 

I generally use the BRCGS Food Standard as a guide to these things, and it pretty much breaks this down into site approval for the supplier/manufacture sites and risk assessment of the material to cover risks including:

 

allergen contamination
foreign-body risks
microbiological contamination
chemical contamination
variety or species cross-contamination
substitution or fraud (see clause 5.4.2)
any risks associated with raw materials which are subject to legislative control.
 
You also haver to make sure any approved changes to raw materials including primary packaging are communicated to your goods-intake function - which is particularly important for pre-printed packaging.
 
As a couple of pointers, the most clearly defined risks to consider are chemical hazards defined by legislation. You can reference this source of EU legislation: Legislation (europa.eu)
In general, a migration analysis is a good way to demonstrate compliance here, but keep in mind that different categories of foods have different thresholds for migration based on fat or ethanol content - so you need to link this back to your HACCP to make sure you're drawing the right conclusions.
 
Similarly, when it comes to microbiological risks, you'll need to risk-assess contact packaging materials based on your product characteristics and the storage and handling conditions - so if you have a retail product presented in a plastic container that the consumer will ultimately cook the food in at home in the oven, your risk assessment would be different to a thaw-and-serve product presented in a paper bag, for example.
 
My personal experience is that packaging suppliers can react with confusion when confronted with these risk assessments because they don't always understand the relevance of questions over allergens etc. That said, you can come into risk assessment outcomes that you might not always anticipate - I once worked for a food manufacturer that produced gluten-free products packed into a plastic bag in cardboard carton format. The risk assessment of the cardboard cartons revealed that the adhesive used in the manufacture of the cardboard cartons was wheat starch - with gluten present. Further investigation showed that the possibility of migration of the gluten from the cardboard packaging was so remote that the gluten-free claim was still valid, but it's important to thoroughly investigate these things.

FOOD PORTAL - The web portal dedicated to the food industry - Home (food-portal.co.uk)

 

Food Portal provides a range of systems and tools for food manufacturers.


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