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Activities to include in a Food Safety Culture program

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Posted 14 August 2023 - 02:01 PM

Hi All,


Please can somebody suggest any activities i could include in our food safety culture program ? We have done survey, no issues identified, survey from customers also came back with no issues. Training for employees is currently in our plan as well as discussion about FSC in weekly meetings. 


Does anybody have any ideas what else to include ? Its difficult subject for A&B. We do not handle any product on site.


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Posted 16 August 2023 - 01:10 AM

I am in the same boat. Food safety topics discussed at toolbox meetings, food safety training for all staff at induction. We've done annual surveys to benchmark staff awareness and it was at a high level.


This year I took a course on food safety culture, which I am leaning on as a new bullet point (the course was not helpful, I was hoping it would give me some ideas).


It's the only part of the standard I struggle with.


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Posted 17 August 2023 - 04:37 AM

My bad habit had me check on the definitions of culture written by social-scientists. They guide me to another dimension different from GFSI's. It remains a big confusion.



Edited by beautiophile, 17 August 2023 - 04:39 AM.

Kara S.

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Posted 17 August 2023 - 03:08 PM

Kind regards, 



Food & Beverage Industry Consultant

IFSQN Business ListingLinkedIn  |  Webpage




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Posted 17 August 2023 - 03:25 PM

What are your concerns with this?  My experience is that as an auditor sees your facility, talks to your staff and leadership and such, and that is how they determine a true food safety culture.  It's in the practices and the talk of the members of your facility.


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Posted 05 September 2023 - 02:03 PM



- Non quality/technical to carry out internal audits on the prerequisites or HACCP ,

- senior management to participate in some activities such as new product development assessment or a taste panel,

- Non quality/technical to collate data about food safety and present it to the company      

Quality and Safety go together, do not try to separate them!


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Posted 05 September 2023 - 02:59 PM

I'd just make a few small comments.


It is important to remember that as auditors we cannot audit your food safety culture. What we can audit is your action plan and any reviews. Culture is day to day, it is not something we can review in a single day audit.


Ensuring your staff complete a questionnaire is an activity, so make sure that is documented as an activity on your action plan. Not only is it a defined activity, but it can also feed into the "review of the effectiveness of completed activities". Remember to make sure the survey is completely anonymous and some good questions to ask include "If a friend or family member needed a job, would you recommend they work here"? 


Your action plan does not need to be war and peace. If you a small agent and broker it would be perfectly reasonable to have 3 actions, those being the completion of the staff survey, the food safety training for all staff on induction and a discussion in weekly meetings.


A few other examples of objectives you could set:

  • All staff to be involved in the setting of company objectives (clause 1.1.3) via an all company team meeting.
  • Additional training implemented for sales staff to be able to carry out internal audits is a really good idea (as Konstantinos said above)
  • Additional staff to receive role specific BRCGS training.

Don't feel like your action plan only needs to run on a year by year basis. It is perfectly reasonable to have a plan with some activities that lasts 3 years or 5 years.


Final comment, just because your staff survey showed their were no issues, doesn't mean there are no issues or that your food safety culture is as good as it could be. Like with internal audits where a site finds nothing wrong every year and yet there are issues we find during the audit, those types of questionnaires tend to get challenged to determine how effective they really were. So you may decide that an action is to review and update your staff survey with additional questions or clarifications in wording.

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