Food Industry Safety & Security

Food Industry Safety & Security

By Implementing robust food defense plans, stakeholders safeguards the integrity and safety of the food supply chain.

The food industry may not often come to mind immediately when one thinks about process safety and security. However, food defense is important for preventing intentional contamination, ensuring public health, upholding consumer confidence, complying with regulations, and sustaining economic stability in the food industry. By implementing robust food defense measures, stakeholders can safeguard the integrity and safety of the food supply chain. Distinct from food safety, food defense focuses on measures aimed at preventing intentional contamination of food products by malicious agents, as opposed to unintentional contaminants commonly found in the food supply such as E. coli, Salmonella, and Listeria. 

Food Safety Modernization Act

Process safety and security are critically important in the food industry, particularly considering regulations like the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). The FSMA, enacted in 2011 with the final rule being signed in 2016, represents a shift in the approach to food safety regulation in the United States. It places greater emphasis on prevention rather than reaction, requiring food manufacturers to implement comprehensive food safety plans, including measures to address intentional adulteration. Compliance with FSMA regulations is mandatory for covered facilities as any disruption to production due to safety or security issues can have far-reaching consequences. These could include supply chain disruptions or shortages of key ingredients or products.  

Plans to meet FSMA requirements are developed as part of an organization’s security plan. The plans establish requirements to prevent or significantly minimize acts on the food supply chain intended to cause large-scale public harm by requiring facilities to address vulnerable processes in their operations. Rule requirements include personnel training and a written Food Defense Plan.

Food Defense Plan Requirements

  • Security Vulnerability Assessment 
  • Mitigation Strategies 
  • Procedures for Food Defense Monitoring 
  • Food Defense Corrective Action Procedures 
  • Food Defense Verification Procedures 
  • Recordkeeping & Documentation 

By proactively managing safety and security risks, companies can minimize the likelihood of disruptions and ensure the uninterrupted flow of goods to market. 

Through our tailored consulting services, including risk assessments and regulatory compliance reviews, AcuTech assists clients in developing customized food defense plans. Our consultants aid in ensuring alignment with regulatory requirements and the mitigation of potential risks. From comprehensive risk assessments and regulatory compliance reviews to crisis management planning and employee training programs, our team provides the expertise and guidance necessary to enhance process safety and security.  

  • Food Defense Plan Development, Review, and Enhancement (utilizing FDA Food Defense Builder 2.0) 
  • Site Audits & Assessments 
  • Security Risk Assessments 
  • Physical and Cyber Security Assessments 
  • Determining and Developing Mitigation Strategies 
  • Crisis Management Planning 
  • Incident Response Support 
  • Training
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