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USDA esitab sel aastal standardid USA kasvatatud orgaaniliste mereandide kohta

USDA esitab sel aastal standardid USA kasvatatud orgaaniliste mereandide kohta


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Vesiviljelustööstus, nagu on teada mereandide kasvatamine, peab üle vaatama, kuidas toime tulla mahepõllumajandusliku mereande pakkumisega.

Mereande, nagu lõhe, tilapia, krevetid, austrid ja karbid, käsitletaks põllumajandusstandardite kohaselt.

Ameerika Ühendriikide põllumajandusministeerium on lõpuks valmis kehtestama standardid Ameerika Ühendriikides kasvatatud mahepõllumajanduslikele mereandidele, sealhulgas „lõhe, tilapia, säga, krevetid ja molluskid, näiteks rannakarbid, austrid ja karbid”, teatab The Associated Press.

Standardid tehakse ettepanek käesoleva aasta lõpus, kuigi kõige varem jõuavad orgaanilised mereannid toidupoodidesse kahe aasta pärast, kui nii USDA kui ka Ameerika mereandide ettevõtted töötavad kiiresti. Uued suunised aitaksid USA -l paremini konkureerida odavama impordiga ning mahepõllumajanduslike mereandide kõrgemad hinnad tuleksid jaemüüjatele kasuks.

Seni on mahetoiduained importinud mahetooteid Euroopa Liidust ja Kanadast. Mahepoodidest ostjad „kalduvad kõrgema sissetuleku ja hariduse poole, mis muudab nad äärmiselt soovitavaks,“ ütles Wegmansi mereandide müügi asepresident Dave Wagner. Praegu pakub Wegmans Norrast ja mujalt imporditud orgaanilisi mereande.

Merekaitsjad ja mereandide tootjad pole kindlad, kas USDA standardid õnnestuvad - ja mõned on väitnud, et kuigi kala võib olla säästvalt hangitud, ei saa seda pidada mahepõllumajanduslikuks, kui selle toit ei ole samuti 100 % mahepõllumajanduslik. Sellisel juhul võib põllumajandustootjatel tekkida vajadus mahekala söötmiseks mahekala kasvatada, mis võib kiiresti muutuda vastuvõetamatuks.

"Sa ei saa võluvitsaga vehkida ja oodata mahepõllumajandusliku tarneahela ilmumist," ütles Hawaii kalakasvataja Neil Sims AP -le.


Hüdropoontooteid võib märgistada mahepõllumajanduslikuks, ütleb USDA nõuandekogu

Mida “organic ” teie jaoks tähendab? Tõenäoliselt on enamiku tarbijate peamine komponent see, et mahepõllumajanduslike toodete kasvatamiseks ei kasutata pestitsiide. Kuid USDA nõuded mahepõllumajanduse sertifitseerimisele lähevad kaugemale kahjurite ja haiguste tõrjest: reeglid kehtivad ka selliste asjade kohta nagu kasutatav maa ja külvikord. Selle tulemusena tõstatab hüdropoonika ja muud kõrgtehnoloogilised siseruumides kasvatamise küsimused huvitava küsimuse: kas tootmine võib olla “organic ”, kui selle kasvatamiseks kasutatud meetod ei tundu üldse loomulik?

Riiklik mahepõllumajandusstandardite nõukogu, 15-liikmeline föderaalne nõuandekogu, mis aitab dikteerida USDA poliitikat kõigi orgaaniliste asjade osas, on seda küsimust juba mõnda aega kaalunud. Tegelikult soovitas paneel 2010. aastal, et mullata kasvatamisel ei lubata mahepõllumajanduslikku hüljest teenida, soovitust, mida USDA otsustas sel ajal mitte järgida. Kuid sel nädalal hääletas kavandatud keeld kasutada mahepõllumajanduses hüdropoonilisi meetodeid kõige õhemate marginaalidega, 8–7, saates ühtsema sõnumi USDA ja NOSB positsiooni kohta.

Arutelu keskmes ei ole ’tervishoiu ”, mille pärast paljud tarbijad mahetooteid ostes muretsevad. Selle asemel on traditsioonilised mahepõllumajandustootjad mures looduslike põllumajandustavade laiema tähtsuse pärast keskkonnale. Riikliku orgaanilise koalitsiooni tegevdirektor Abby Youngblood ütles NPR -le, et üleujutuste avamine orgaanilisele hüdropoonikale on vastuolus mahepõllumajanduse aluspõhimõtetega, mille eesmärk on tõepoolest mulla tervis ja mulla taastamine. ”

Kuid Jessie Gunn, ettevõtte Wholesum Harvest esindaja, kes kasvatab köögivilju kõrgtehnoloogilistes kasvuhoonetes, väitis, et hüdropoonikal on oma eelised. “Võime kasvatada oma tomateid orgaaniliselt 3–5 galloni veega ühe naela toodangu kohta, erinevalt tomatite kasvatamisest avamaal, kus saab kasutada kõikjal 26–37 gallonit vett, ” selgitas ta. “I tähendab, mis on mahepõllumajanduse tegelik olemus? ”

Ja see on muidugi suur küsimus: erinevatel rühmadel, erinevatel ettevõtetel ja erinevatel üksikisikutel on mahetoodete ootuste osas erinevad prioriteedid. Ja kuigi mahepõllumajanduslikel kaupadel on oma eelised keskkonnale, muutuvad need ka teel suureks äriks. Mõlemal pool ja mõnes mõttes semantikaga seotud arutelul on kaalul palju kõiki osapooli –. Ja vähemalt üks mahepõllumajandustootja Dave Chapman ütles Washington Postile, et sõnastuse muutmine võib olla traditsiooniline mahepõllumajandus ja#x2019 järgmine samm. “Küsimus on selles, kas loobume riiklikust maheprogrammist ja leiame uue viisi enda tuvastamiseks? ” Chapman. “It ’ on ehtne küsimus. Ma ei tea. ”


USDA uus silt tuvastab selgelt mahepõllumajandusliku toidu

20. detsember 2000 (Washington) - Umbes 18 kuu pärast saavad mahepõllumajanduslikud toidud märgise "USDA Organic", mis sarnaneb USDA märgisega, mis nüüd ilmub munadele ja lihale.

Föderaalsed reguleerivad asutused avaldasid kolmapäeval esimesed riiklikud standardid mahepõllumajandusliku toidu kasvatamiseks, tootmiseks ja märgistamiseks. Reeglid piiravad kümne aasta pikkust arutelu selle üle, mis määratleb mahepõllumajandusliku ja mittemahepõllumajandusliku toidu. Eeskirjad asendavad kõik olemasolevad riiklikud standardid, mis reguleerivad mahepõllumajandust.

Nüüd saavad tarbijad, kes soovivad osta mahetoitu, "teha seda enesekindlalt, teades täpselt, mida nad ostavad," ütles põllumajandusminister Dan Glickman kolmapäeval pressikonverentsil.

Uute föderaalsete standardite kohaselt, mis jõustuvad umbes 18 kuu pärast, sertifitseerivad USDA esindajad toidud, mis sisaldavad vähemalt 95% mahepõllumajanduslikult kasvatatud koostisosi, "orgaanilisteks". Toidud, mille sisu on üle 70% mahepõllumajanduslik, märgistatakse kui "sisaldavad orgaanilisi koostisosi".

Toidu koostisosi ei tohi mahepõllumajanduslikult töödelda kiirgusega ega kasvatada reoveesette abil. Toit ei tohi sisaldada ka geneetiliselt muundatud koostisosi. Ja kariloomade osas keelavad reeglid kasutada antibiootikume või hormoone, mida tavaliselt kasutatakse kasvu edendamiseks.

Jätkub

Kuid standardid lubavad kasutada teatud looduslikke pestitsiide ja muid toodetud aineid. USDA selgitab, et agentuur püüdis igal juhul valitseda, lähtudes tarbijate eelistustest.

Agentuur ütleb aga, et standardeid ei töötatud välja ohutuse, kvaliteedi ega toitumise seisukohalt parema toote loomiseks. Tegelikult loodi USDA sõnul märgis lihtsalt selleks, et tugevdada nii kodu- kui ka välismaist usaldust USA mahetoiduainetööstuse vastu.

"Lubage mul ühes asjas selge olla. Mahemärgis on turundusvahend. See ei ole avaldus toiduohutuse kohta. Samuti ei ole" mahe "väärtushinnang toitumise või kvaliteedi kohta," ütles Glickman.

Uutele standarditele vastavatel toitudel on pitser USDA Organic.

Mahekaubanduse assotsiatsiooni (OTA) teatel diskvalifitseerivad reeglid teatud hulga niinimetatud mahetooteid, mis üritavad praegu ligi 8 miljardi dollari aastas turult kasu saada. "Mõnda neist toodetest, mida müüakse mahepõllumajanduslikult, ei märgita enam mahepõllumajanduslikuks," ütles OTA tegevdirektor Katherine DiMatteo varasemas intervjuus.

Jätkub

"Esmakordselt kehtivad kõik Ameerika Ühendriikides turustatavate mahetoodete jaoks ühtsed standardid ja märgistus. Enam ei teki küsimusi selle kohta, mida tähendab" mahepõllumajanduslik "ja kas protsess on sertifitseeritud," lisas DiMatteo kolmapäeval ettevalmistatud avaldus.

Siiski ei leia kõik, et USDA uus silt oleks nii isuäratav. Traditsioonilised toidutootjad ja biotehnoloogia tööstus on kulutanud palju aega, raha ja vaeva selle uue märgistuse loomise vastu, sest kardavad, et tarbijad peavad märgist kvaliteedimärgiks.

USDA etikett toetab neid, kes soovivad halvustada toiduaineid, mis on saadud muudest tõendatult ohututest tootmismeetoditest, näiteks geenitehnoloogiast, selgitas Biotehnoloogia Tööstuse Organisatsioon varasemas avalduses.

Sellegipoolest näitavad reeglid, et ameeriklastel on tõesti valikuvõimalus, väidab maailma toiduainete, jookide ja tarbekaupade tootjate ühendus Grocery Manufacturers of America (GMA).

"Me lihtsalt tahame, et USDA jälgiks nüüd tarbijate reaktsiooni, et tagada, et märgistus ei eksita," ütleb GMA pressiesindaja Peter Clearly WebMD -le. "Toetame standardite kehtestamist mahepõllumajanduslikuks, kuid oleme mures, et tarbijad võivad märgistust heakskiiduna näha," selgitab ta.

Jätkub

Reeglid, mille USDA pidi välja töötama 1990. aasta kongressiseadusega, esitati esmakordselt 1997. aastal. USDA võttis selle ettepaneku tagasi pärast seda, kui oli saanud sadu tuhandeid avalikke kommentaare, kritiseerides peamiselt kavandatavat märgist ja USDA mahetoidu määratlust.

Lõplikud reeglid on nüüd Glickmani üks viimaseid tegevusi USDA juhina. Glickman ütles hiljutisel kohtumisel esinedes, et lõplikud reeglid tähendavad tulise arutelu lõppu, mis aitas tähistada tema kuut ametiaastat.


NOAA kalanduse videogalerii

NOAA kalanduse mereandide kontrolliprogramm tagab, et teie mereannid on ohutud, tervislikud ja tervislikud


Tee edule

Mahetoidu restorani äriplaanis on palju jaotisi, sealhulgas turundus- ja finantsplaanid, tegevuskava ja personaliplaan. Kui dokument on peaaegu valmis, on aeg kirjutada kokkuvõte. See on ühe või kahe lehekülje kokkuvõte ülejäänud dokumendis sisalduvast. Kuigi see on kirjutatud viimasena, on see esimene sissejuhatus, mida lugeja ettevõtja kavatsuste juurde jõuab. See selgitab lühidalt paljusid dokumente, mis on ülejäänud dokumendis täielikult välja töötatud.

  • Põhiteave – Sissejuhatavas lõigus esitatakse söögikoha nimi ja selle üldine asukoht. Ettevõtja saab ühe või kahe lausega selgitada, et serveerib teatud toite. Kui see on tõsi, on oluline mainida, et pakutakse muud tüüpi valikuid, nagu etnilised retseptid, taimetoitlased või gluteenivabad retseptid. Lugeja ahvatlemiseks lisage lühikirjeldus, miks ettevõtja otsustas seda tüüpi menüüteema ja kust koostisosad pärinevad.
  • Atmosfäär - ühes või kahes lõigus selgitage mahetoidu restorani äriplaani õhkkonda või õhkkonda. Kas see on rõõmsameelne, perekondlikus stiilis koht, maalähedane söögikoht või uhke šikk söögikoht, kus pakutakse tööd töötavatele spetsialistidele? Kas õhkkond on juhuslik või ametlik? Mis on kaunistamise teema? Millised värvid valiti? Kas seal on putkasid või laudu või mõlemat? Värvige pilt sõnadega, et lugejal oleks selge ettekujutus söögikoha väljanägemisest.
  • Personal – Kes on kokk ja mis on tema eriala? Kas on vaja ootajat, kassapidajat, nõudepesuvett ja bussipoisse või tüdrukuid? Kas omanik juhib peamiselt mahetoidu restorani äriplaani või teeb ta süüa, ootab laudu või tervitab külalisi?
  • Kliendid - joonistage ka pilt sõnadega, millist tüüpi kliente oodatakse söögikohta külastama. See on lõik, kus ettevõtja saab kirjeldada sihitud turusegmente, näiteks tervisliku vananemise protsessist huvitatud beebibuumi või keskkonnateadlikke aastatuhandeid. Esitage konkreetne statistika erinevate turusegmentide kohta.
  • Juhtimine - tutvustage võtmejuhte, kes vastutavad restorani edu eest. Nende hulka kuuluvad sellised inimesed nagu omanik, peadirektor, raamatupidaja, kokk ja abikokad jt. Kirjutage iga inimese kohta lause või kaks, kirjeldades kohustusi ja aastatepikkust kogemust.
  • Lisateave - lisage söögikoha kohta lugejat või investorit erutav teave. Mis aitab söögikoha rahalisele edule kõige rohkem kaasa? Mahetoidu restorani äriplaani edutegurid hõlmavad tõenäoliselt erakordset klienditeenindust, maitsvaid ja loomingulisi retsepte, kutsuvat õhkkonda ja laia valikut menüüvalikuid. Paljud söögikohad pakuvad tänapäeval ka seotud ja ahvatlevaid funktsioone, näiteks „rohelisi” tavasid, nagu keskkonnakaitse toetamine, vee- ja energiasäästlike seadmete paigaldamine, põllumeestele komposti pakkumine jne.
  • Muud tuluallikad-Igasuguste söögikohtade kasvatamiseks müüvad mõned restoranid pakendatud kaupu veebis või peavad kingituste poodi või väikest turgu. Need on vaid mõned viisid ettevõtte laiendamiseks väljaspool söögikoha seinu.
  • Finantsteave – Ühes lõigus esitage lugejale põhiline finantsteave, näiteks käivitamiskulud, esimese aasta müük ja kulud ning millal eeldatakse, et ettevõte on kasumlik. Samuti, kui esitatud teave on kirjutatud investorite ligimeelitamiseks, näitab viimane lõik, kui palju raha on vaja. Mõnes dokumendis lisatakse diagramm, mis näitab visuaalselt esimese paari aasta finantsteavet. Mida lihtsam on lugejatel finantsplaanist aru saada, seda lihtsam on investoreid meelitada.

Ebaõnnestumise vältimine

Kvaliteetne maherestoranide äriplaan vastab täielikult potentsiaalsete investorite küsimustele. Plaani põhjalikkus on kriitilise tähtsusega, sest dokument on nagu edukale viitavate suunaviitade kogum. Ohio osariigi ülikooli uuringu kohaselt kukub aasta jooksul läbi umbes 60 protsenti restoranidest. Nad ebaõnnestuvad mitmel põhjusel:

  • Kogenematu juhtimine
  • Raske leida ja hoida kvalifitseeritud inimesi, kes suudavad pakkuda suurepärast klienditeenindust
  • Raamatupidamisoskuste puudumine ei tooda otsuste tegemiseks täpset statistikat ja teavet
  • Halb menüüvalik või halb koostisosade kvaliteet

Tööstuse väljakutsed

Äriplaani potentsiaalsed investorid on tõenäoliselt väga teadlikud tööstuse ees seisvatest väljakutsetest, seega on oluline käsitleda kõiki neist, mis võivad käivitamist mõjutada. Näiteks ütleb OTA, et sobivaid toiduaineid on endiselt vähe. Maherestoranide äriplaan peaks sisaldama arutelu selle üle, kuidas ettevõte tagab talle juurdepääsu õigetele koostisosadele. Patroonidele ei meeldi menüüst üksuste valimine, et kuulda: "See pole täna saadaval." Suusõnaline negatiivne reklaam kahjustab peagi võimet meelitada ligi uusi kliente ja pidevalt kasvada. Oluline on lisada menüüsse kohanemisvõime, et ühe või mitme koostisosa puudus ei kahjustaks müüki.

Menüüelementide hinnakujundus on keeruline ka seetõttu, et varud on kitsad ja sageli tuleb tellida värskeid puu- ja köögivilju või muid koostisosi kaugelt tarnijalt. Ilm on ka tegur. Seda tüüpi toidud on ka spetsialiseeritud põllumajandustehnikate tõttu kallimad kui toidud, mis sisaldavad lisaaineid või mida töödeldakse - mõnikord kaks korda rohkem.

Teine väljakutse on vajadus paigaldada spetsiaalne varustus, mis tagab, et toidukorra kõik aspektid on kemikaalideta. Näiteks toodab enamik ühisveevärke kemikaalidega täidetud vett. Seetõttu tuleb mahetoidu restorani äriplaanis paigaldada kõrgeima kvaliteediga kaubanduslik vee filtreerimissüsteem. See suurendab vajaliku stardikapitali summat.


USDA esitab sel aastal standardid USA kasvatatud orgaaniliste mereandide kohta - retseptid

2008. aasta kevade seisuga ei ole USA põllumajandusministeerium (USDA) veel alustanud Ameerika Ühendriikides kala mahepõllumajanduslikuks tunnistamist. Teiste riikide agentuurid (näiteks Kanadas Briti Columbia sertifitseeritud maheliidud) sertifitseerivad kala mahepõllumajanduslikuks ja osa neist kaladest müüakse USA -s ning neil on seaduslik mahepitser. Kuigi mahepõllumajanduslik kalakasvatus on jätkuvalt vaidluste ja segaduse valdkond, toetan ma neid sertifitseerimisprotsesse ja julgustan teid kaaluma mahepõllumajanduslikult kasvatatud kala võimalikku lisamist oma tervislikumasse toitumisviisi. Kuna ligikaudu 80% kogu USA -s müüdavast kalast on imporditud teistest riikidest, on riigi eri osades praegu saadaval mitmeid mahepõllumajanduslikult kasvatatud kala võimalusi (kuid pole veel nii laialdaselt kättesaadavad kui paljud teised mahetoidud).

Eeldan, et USDA riiklik mahepõllumajandusstandardite nõukogu võtab lähitulevikus vastu oma vesiviljeluse töörühma soovitused ja hakkab kasvatatud kala USA -s mahepõllumajanduslikuks sertifitseerima, kui kala vastab määratletud mahepõllumajanduslikele suunistele. See samm võimaldab kuvada USDA rohelise mahepõllumajandusliku logo tehistingimustes kasvatatud kaladele, mis vastavad mahepõllumajanduse standarditele tervise ja keskkonna osas. Soovitan teil need kalad osta, kui need saadaval on!

Kuna peaaegu kõik mahepõllumajanduslikult märgistatud kalad on tehistingimustes kasvatatud kalad, siis kuidas on loodusest püütud kaladega? Praegu ei paista, et USDA lubaks oma orgaanilise logo kuvamist metsikult püütud kaladele. Sellegipoolest usun, et saate osta metsikult püütud kala, mis on nii tervislik kui ka keskkonna seisukohalt ohutu.

Loodusest püütud kalade puhul on oluline geograafia. Erinevad kalad ujuvad erinevates kohalikes vetes ja need veed on saasteainete poolest väga erinevad. Oleme põhjalikult uurinud USA keskkonnakaitseagentuuri (EPA) viimast aruannet elavhõbeda sisalduse kohta erinevates kalades ja selle aruande põhjal tuvastanud teie parimad ja halvimad valikud looduslikult püütud kalade osas. Teie parimad metsikult püütud valikud on Vaikse ookeani äärest California, Oregoni ja Washingtoni rannikualadelt püütud Alaska lõhe ja Lääneranniku lõhe. Vaikse ookeani kammkarbid, krevetid, austrid, karbid, rannakarbid, heeringas ja anšoovis on ka nende majanduspartnerluslepingu andmete põhjal head valikud. Soovitan kaaluda neid looduslikult püütud kalu oma tervislikuma toitumisviisi lisamiseks mitu korda nädalas.

Spektri teises otsas on metsikult püütud kalad, mida soovitame vältida nende EPA kõrge elavhõbedahinnangu tõttu. Looduslikult püütud kalade nimekiri, mida tuleb vältida, peaks sisaldama: mõõkkala, kahlakala, marliini, haid, harilikku tuuni ja kuningmakrelli.

Mahestandardite ja vesiviljeluse kohta lisateabe saamiseks soovitan teil külastada järgmisi ressursse:


Orgaaniline kogukond, USDA ja hommik pärast

18. november 2009. Meie eelmine ülevaade mahepõllumajanduse ajaloost süvenes rohujuuretasandi kogukonna föderaalse tunnustamise kohtusse ja selle suhte täiustumiseni mahepõllumajandusliku toidu tootmise seadusega (OFPA) 1990. aastal. Tänane arutelu jätkub hommik ja reservatsioonid - tundus tänaseni ja kas onu Samiga suhtlemine osutus nii soodsaks kui loodeti. Arvestades USDA ülalt-alla lähenemisviisi otsuste tegemisel ja orgaanilise kogukonna pühendumist üksmeelele, on nende kahe tervislik mäng alati olnud keeruline ettepanek. Suhet muudab veelgi keerulisemaks asjaolu, et kuigi OFPA annab mahepõllumajanduslikule kogukonnale mahepõllumajanduse määratluse ja praktika üle märkimisväärse mõju, tagab see ka selle, et USDA säilitab lõpuks ülekaalu. Lõpliku vastutuse mahepõllumajanduse eest üleandmine USDA -le on andnud mahepõllumajandusringkondade taotletud järjepidevuse, usaldusväärsuse ja tunnustuse. Need tulud on aga tulnud kahekümneaastase turbulentsi arvelt partneriga, kes on aeg -ajalt ükskõiksusele ja kapriissusele kalduv.

Ärgem astugem endast ette, sest USDA ei võtnud pärast OFPA vastuvõtmist enne 1997. aasta detsembrit mahepõllumajandusega seotud sisulisi meetmeid (ma mainisin midagi ükskõiksusest, kas pole?). Oluline on arvestada mahepõllumajanduse selle ajavahemiku jooksul toimunud sisemiste muutustega, eriti tootmise, töötlemise ja turustamise sektori olulise konsolideerimisega. 1960ndate ja 70ndate aastate jooksul kaubanduslikult kättesaadavaks saanud esimese identifitseeritud ja seejärel sertifitseeritud mahepõllumajandustoodete laine puhul oli sildi nime taga olev maine edu lahutamatu osa. Lootustandvad ettevõtted, nagu Walnut Acres, Arrowhead Mills ja Eden Foods, said täisteratooteid, riisi ja muid põhitooteid turule, sest neid juhtinud inimesi tunnustati mahepõllumajanduse juhtivate praktikute ja pooldajatena. See protsess kordus 1980ndatel kiiresti riknevate toodete ning konserveeritud ja külmutatud toitude puhul, kuna alustavad ettevõtmised nagu Pavichi viinamarjad, maheorg, Cascadian Farms ja Muir Glen pälvisid väärtusliku tarbijate usalduse. Paljudele nendest mahepõllumajanduse teerajajatele oli juba ammu öeldud, et nad ei saa kunagi toitu kasvatada ilma põllumajanduskemikaale kasutamata ja nüüd tarnivad nad sellist toitu siseriiklikele turgudele! Ühendus rohujuure tasandi tootjate ja töötlejatega, kes olid eesrindlikud partnerid süsteemiga silmitsi seismisel, oli oluline osa kaubamärgist, mis kindlustas mahepõllumajanduslikult toodetud toiduainete jaoks 1990. aastaks märkimisväärse ja kasvava turuosa.

Kaks põhjust, miks süsteemist sai (ja jääb) süsteemiks, on selle võime ära kasutada uusi tarbijatrende ja reageerida agressiivselt konkurentsile. Need jõud käivitasid mahepõllumajandustoodete tootmise, töötlemise, turustamise ja turustamise dramaatilise koondumise isegi siis, kui üldine turg kasvas 1990ndatel kiiresti. Tavapärane toiduettevõte ei kavatsenud sel perioodil mahepõllumajandusettevõtteid võita ega nendega ühineda, eeldades, et need on palju praktilisem äristrateegia. Nende taktika hõlmas hulgimüüki, näiteks Dean Foodsi poolt Horizon Dairy ostmist 1998. aastal ning Cascadian Farms'i ja Muir Gleni ostmist General Millsi poolt aasta hiljem. Teise lähenemisviisi korral astusid suured tavatootjad-eriti värskete toodete turule-mahetootmisse ja kasutasid oma sügavaid taskuid veteranide konkurentide kõrvaldamiseks. Näiteks said hulgimüügitoodete ostjad kogu riigis California põllumajandusettevõtte hiiglaselt püsiva pakkumise Pavichi maheviinamarjade müümiseks ühe dollari kohta karbi kohta, mille tulemuseks oli viimase pankrot. Ettevõtete põllumajandusettevõtete kasvav kontroll mahepõllumajanduslike turgude üle langes kokku kõrgelt töödeldud sertifitseeritud toiduainete, nagu suupisted, „kuumuta ja söö”, ning kondiitritoodete, mis on uuesti määratletud kui tervislik toit, nimega sojapiim. Pidage meeles, et nende kõrge marginaaliga pseudotoitude turu kasv sõltus sellest, et ignoreeriti OFPA keeldu sünteetiliste koostisosade kasutamisest töödeldud toitudes, milles kõige sertifitseerivad ained, NOSB ja USDA olid võrdselt kaasosalised.

Selle kasvu ja mitmekesistamise tulemusena jõudis 1990ndate orgaaniline kogukond suure telgi metafoorini. Liikumise käivitanud traditsioonilised põllumehed ja maapealsed uustulnukad olid hästi esindatud, nagu ka kogenud kasvatajapõhised sertifitseerimisagendid, kes olid üles kasvanud nende teenindamiseks. Nende organisatsioonide kõrgeimad olid California sertifitseeritud mahepõllumajandustootjad, Oregon Tilth ja Kirde mahepõllumajanduse ja aiandusühenduse osariigi peatükid. Kuid need loomingulised tüübid leidsid endale palju uusi ettevõtteid, mis olid korporatiivsed toiduainete töötlejad ja turundajad (eriti Whole Foods) ning nii riiklikud kui ka eraõiguslikud sertifitseerimisagendid tulid nii eakaaslaste kui ka konkurentidena. Mittetulunduslikud tarbija- ja keskkonnaühendused, sealhulgas tarbijate liit, Ameerika Ühendriikide humaanne selts ja keskkonna töörühm, panustasid aktiivselt ka rohujuuretasandi korraldamisse ja Washingtoni propageerimisse. Kuna mahepõllumajanduslike toodete aastane kasv ulatus 90ndate keskpaigaks pidevalt 20 protsendini, oli nende liitude aluseks olevaid vastuolusid-näiteks töötlejad ja jaemüüjad ajalooliselt tootjatega ja mittetulundusühingutega harva ühinenud-hõlpsasti mööda vaadata. Võlakirjad nende uute kaaslaste vahel tsingiti põhjalikult 21. detsembril 1997, kui USDA avalikustas oma esimese ettepaneku riiklike mahestandardite kohta ja kõik mahepõllumajandusringkonnad põrutasid nähtavale.

Enne USDA mahestandardite esialgse ettepaneku vaatamist vaatame üle, kuidas nad oma otsustele jõudsid. Vastavalt OFPA nõuetele nimetas põllumajandussekretär Edward Madigan 1992. aastal NOSB -i liikmed, sealhulgas mitu mahepõllumajanduslikku võitlejat, sealhulgas esimees Michael Sligh, Michigani veiselihatootja Merrill Clark ja Cascadian Farms'i asutaja Gene Kahn. NOSB kohtus regulaarselt, töötas usinalt ja esitas 1995. aasta lõpuks sekretärile üksikasjaliku ülevaate mahestandardite kehtestamiseks ja USDA sertifitseerimisagentide akrediteerimise haldamiseks. NOSB soovitatud standardite ja menetluste eelnõud olid valitsevate sertifitseerimistavade sünteesi keskeltläbi. Need hõlmasid loomulikele põhimõtetele tuginevaid põhinõudeid põllukultuuride ja loomakasvatuse jaoks, tootjate ja sertifitseerimisagentide vahelist andmis- ja võtmisruumi, et kokku leppida eripärades, ning kitsast toetust sünteetilistele materjalidele nii tootmisel kui ka töötlemisel. Töötades väikese eelarvega, nägi USDA riiklik maheprogramm (NOP) NOSB -ga sammu, kuigi palkas targalt mahestandardite veteraniekspert Grace Gershuny, et tõlkida orgaaniline kõne föderaalseks reguleerivaks keeleks. Pärast seda, kui NOSB oma töö lõpetas, töötas NOP kaks aastat välja põhjaliku eelnõu, mis sisaldas üksikasjalikku kirjeldust kontekstist, milles erinevaid küsimusi tuli kaaluda. Sel perioodil küsis NOP ka föderaalsete eakaaslaste, sealhulgas EPA ja FDA, kes kasutasid seadusjärgset volitust mahepõllumajandusstandardite põhielementide üle, nagu pestitsiidide ja toidu lisaainete reguleerimine.

Nagu varem mainitud, on raske üle hinnata, kui halvasti reageeris mahepõllumajandusringkond USDA esimesele välja pakutud reeglile mahepõllumajandusstandardite kohta, mis avaldati 21. detsembril 1997. „Reedetud”, „Ilmastav moonutus”, „Kirjutas Monsanto”… tundus olevat kriitika ägedusel pole piire. Miski ei seo inimesi nagu ühise vaenlase omamine ja polnud kedagi, keda orgaaniline kogukond (endiselt suures osas hunnik kõrvalisi inimesi) vaenlasena kergemini tajuks kui USDA. Konkreetselt nägi mahepõllumajanduslik kogukond põllukultuuride ja loomakasvatuse standardeid aktsepteeritud tava kahvatu jäljendajana ning täis kompromisse ja lünki. Kogukond esitas ka vastuväiteid sertifitseerimisagentide-mahepõllumajanduse kauaaegsete kaastähtede-draakonlikele piirangutele, kelle ees seisis föderaalse diktaadi pöial. Mõelge, mida Rachel Carson selle kohta ütleks! Võimalik, et kavandatava reegli kõige sütitavam aspekt oli kaalutlus, millega ta pööras karistuse geenitehnoloogia, reoveesette ja kiiritamise kasutamise eest mahetootmises - see läks mõeldamatult kaugemale kahvatust. USDA ettepaneku avaliku tagasilükkamise põhjused hakkasid ilmnema umbes 24 tundi pärast selle avaldamist ja umbes 275 000 negatiivset kommentaari, millest enam kui 100 000 ainulaadset avaldust ja mitte kirja. Huvitavas ajaloolises joonealuses märkuses saaks NOP sisemise USDA auhinna selle tõhususe eest selle kommentaaride mäe vastuvõtmisel ja avalikkusele elektrooniliselt kättesaadavaks tegemisel - see oli murranguline edu Interneti kasutamisel föderaalse eeskirjade koostamisel.

Washingtoni kõige olulisem poliitiline kaup on kate või võime öelda, et tegite õigesti, olenemata sellest, kui halvasti teie ettevõtmine osutus. Kui 275 000 inimest teda välja kutsuks, poleks põllumajandusminister Dan Glickmanile mingit katet ja tema kiituseks tuleb öelda, et ta ei üritanud mõne leidmiseks rabeleda. Sekretär Glickman tunnistas, et USDA ebaõnnestus halvasti ja ta kohustas osakonda enne Clintoni administratsiooni lõppu õigesti tegema. Oma esimese sammuga osakonna usalduse taastamiseks määras ta põllumajandusettevõtte turundusteenistuse administraatoriks tohutult lugupeetud Kathleen Merrigani, kelle ülesanne oli töö õigesti teha. NOSB kutsuti uuesti kokku ja hakati kohtuma kolm korda aastas ning noorendatud NOP -i voolas märkimisväärseid uusi ressursse. (Teie autor sattus NOP -i positsiooni „uute ressursside” kava alla.)

Inimeste hääli oli tõepoolest kuulda võetud ja meie järgmises peatükis uurime, kui problemaatiline on saada seda, mida te oma valitsuselt küsite!

Mark Keating on töötanud looduslike, säästvate, mahepõllumajanduslike ja kohalike toiduainete liikumises alates 1982. aastast. Tema töökogemus hõlmab kaubanduslikku toitlustamist, talutööjõudu, jaemüüki ja turundust, osariigi ja föderaalteenistust, mittetulundusühinguid ja akadeemilisi ringkondi. USDA -s aastatel 1999–2004 aitas Mark koostada põllukultuuride ja loomakasvatuse riiklikke mahestandardeid ning töötas kaks aastat põllumajandustootjate turgude arendamise ja edendamise nimel. Püüdmatu usklik, et looduslikult kasvatatud ja kohapeal levitatud toit pakub parimat võimalust inimeste tervisele ja planeetide ellujäämisele, elab Mark koos oma naise ja nende tütrega Kentucky Bluegrassis.


Juhend mahetoidu ostmiseks: toidumärgiste lugemine

Miks osta orgaanilist? Lühike vastus on see, et mahepõllumajanduslik toit võib olla teie tervisele ja keskkonnale parem valik, kuna see ei ole pestitsiidide, antibiootikumide ja hormoonidega kokku puutunud ega geneetiliselt muundatud taime- või loomaliikidest. Probleem muutub aga pisut keerulisemaks, kui rändate supermarketite vahekäikudes ja hakkate lugema toidumärgiseid. Vaatame.

Köögiviljad ja puuviljad

Orgaaniliste köögiviljade ja puuviljade ostmine on lihtsaim viis vähendada kokkupuudet pestitsiidide, antibiootikumide jääkide ja geneetiliselt muundatud toiduga. Keskkonnatöörühma uuringust leiti vastsündinute nabaväädiverest keskmiselt 200 tööstuskemikaali ja saasteainet, millest mõned on pestitsiidid, mis võisid ema toiduga sattuda vereringesse. Täiskasvanute tase ületas 275 saasteainet. Hea uudis on see, et kui lapsed söövad mahepõllundustooteid, langeb nende pestitsiididega kokkupuutumise tase tunduvalt alla selle, mida keskkonnakaitseagentuur (EPA) peab Washingtoni ülikooli teadlaste sõnul tühiseks.

Õnneks on Ameerika Ühendriikidel riiklik mahestandardite programm, mida haldab USA põllumajandusministeerium (USDA). Kui ostate USDA sertifikaadiga mahetoitu, teate, et see on toodetud ilma enamikku naftast saadud pestitsiide, sünteetilistest koostisosadest valmistatud väetisi ega reoveesetteid kasutamata. Organic regulations also prohibit bioengineered species and irradiation. Before a product is labeled “USDA-certified organic,” a third-party, government-approved certifier inspects the farm for compliance. Companies that handle or process organic food for the supermarket are also certified.

Look for the USDA green-and-white “certified organic” symbol on organic fresh, frozen and canned fruits and vegetables. Also note the fresh-produce stickers: Organic produce always starts with a number 9, followed by the price code. Labels on genetically modified produce, which is not organic, begin with a number 8, followed by the price code.

Poultry and Eggs

The poultry and egg industries have dozens of terms that make their brands appear similar to organic even when they’re not. Words that may appear on labels include “free roaming,” “free range,” “cage free,” “no antibiotics,” “no pesticides,” “vegetarian fed” and “hormone free.” (Hormones are never allowed in the poultry, egg and pork industries—organic or not.)

To be certified organic, poultry or eggs must meet all the above criteria—and be raised using certified organic farming methods. One of the most significant differences between pseudo-organic brands and certified organic is the use of antibiotics on the bird, which may contribute to human antibiotic resistance.

Organic meats are from free-ranging animals that have been raised eating organically grown grass or feed and that have not been treated with antibiotics or hormones that speed up the animal’s growth. Organic livestock rules also prohibit the use of animal byproducts in feed, which has been a primary contributor to bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), or mad cow disease.

The word “natural” on a meat label might mean that hormones, antibiotics, pesticides or other synthetic ingredients never were administered. The USDA definition of “natural” is somewhat diluted it simply means the finished product has been minimally processed and contains no artificial ingredients. The primary difference between “natural” meat (not a USDA classification) and certified organic meat is the feed. Though naturally raised livestock are customarily fed a vegetarian diet, the feed may have been grown with pesticides.

Numerous reports have raised questions regarding fish safety. Elevated levels of such contaminants as dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have been found in farmed salmon, and mercury is high in large ocean fish. The USDA has not yet approved organic seafood certification standards, so there’s nothing to prevent a company from selling its product as organic—as long as the official USDA organic seal is not used. (A proposal for organic seafood certification is currently under review.)

Some states, such as Florida, have their own USDA organic seafood certification process, but there’s been resistance to this practice. California recently banned the sale of any organically labeled seafood until state or federal standards are established. For now, remember that U.S. shrimp, wild salmon, crab, tilapia and farmed catfish contain the lowest mercury levels. Also, better aquaculture practices are emerging, such as feeding shrimp and tilapia a vegetarian diet and maintaining clean habitats for farm-raised mollusks.

As many as 30 percent of conventional dairy farmers use hormones (rBGH) to stimulate milk production, according to Monsanto, an rBGH manufacturer. This places extraordinary stress on the cows, causing infections that require more antibiotics. Organic dairy rules prohibit these practices and require that cows receive vegetarian, organic feed and pasture-grazing time. As organic dairy farms try to keep up with high demand, many are under attack for cutting corners on pasturing time. Discussions are under way to address the issue.

Organic Packaged Foods

Packaged foods may be categorized into three organic classifications: 100 percent organic 95 percent organic with the remaining 5 percent from approved foods and substances or 70 percent organic with the remaining ingredients also from an approved list. Only the first two classes may use the USDA’s green and white organic-certification symbol. Packaged foods in the 70 percent–organic category may carry a “made with organic ingredients” label along with a list of those that are organically grown.


HACCP Principles & Application Guidelines

The National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF) is an advisory committee chartered under the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and comprised of participants from the USDA (Food Safety and Inspection Service), Department of Health and Human Services (U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) the Department of Commerce (National Marine Fisheries Service), the Department of Defense (Office of the Army Surgeon General), academia, industry and state employees. NACMCF provides guidance and recommendations to the Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of Health and Human Services regarding the microbiological safety of foods.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Describe the food and its distribution

Describe the intended use and consumers of the food

Develop a flow diagram which describes the process

Conduct a hazard analysis (Principle 1)

Determine critical control points (CCPs) (Principle 2)

Establish critical limits (Principle 3)

Establish monitoring procedures (Principle 4)

Establish corrective actions (Principle 5)

Establish verification procedures (Principle 6)

Establish record-keeping and documentation procedures (Principle 7)

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (Committee) reconvened a Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) Working Group in 1995. The primary goal was to review the Committee's November 1992 HACCP document, comparing it to current HACCP guidance prepared by the Codex Committee on Food Hygiene. Based upon its review, the Committee made the HACCP principles more concise revised and added definitions included sections on prerequisite programs, education and training, and implementation and maintenance of the HACCP plan revised and provided a more detailed explanation of the application of HACCP principles and provided an additional decision tree for identifying critical control points (CCPs).

The Committee again endorses HACCP as an effective and rational means of assuring food safety from harvest to consumption. Preventing problems from occurring is the paramount goal underlying any HACCP system. Seven basic principles are employed in the development of HACCP plans that meet the stated goal. These principles include hazard analysis, CCP identification, establishing critical limits, monitoring procedures, corrective actions, verification procedures, and record-keeping and documentation. Under such systems, if a deviation occurs indicating that control has been lost, the deviation is detected and appropriate steps are taken to reestablish control in a timely manner to assure that potentially hazardous products do not reach the consumer.

In the application of HACCP, the use of microbiological testing is seldom an effective means of monitoring CCPs because of the time required to obtain results. In most instances, monitoring of CCPs can best be accomplished through the use of physical and chemical tests, and through visual observations. Microbiological criteria do, however, play a role in verifying that the overall HACCP system is working.

The Committee believes that the HACCP principles should be standardized to provide uniformity in training and applying the HACCP system by industry and government. In accordance with the National Academy of Sciences recommendation, the HACCP system must be developed by each food establishment and tailored to its individual product, processing and distribution conditions.

In keeping with the Committee's charge to provide recommendations to its sponsoring agencies regarding microbiological food safety issues, this document focuses on this area. The Committee recognizes that in order to assure food safety, properly designed HACCP systems must also consider chemical and physical hazards in addition to other biological hazards.

For a successful HACCP program to be properly implemented, management must be committed to a HACCP approach. A commitment by management will indicate an awareness of the benefits and costs of HACCP and include education and training of employees. Benefits, in addition to enhanced assurance of food safety, are better use of resources and timely response to problems.

The Committee designed this document to guide the food industry and advise its sponsoring agencies in the implementation of HACCP systems.

MÕISTED

CCP Decision Tree: A sequence of questions to assist in determining whether a control point is a CCP.

Control: (a) To manage the conditions of an operation to maintain compliance with established criteria. (b) The state where correct procedures are being followed and criteria are being met.

Control Measure: Any action or activity that can be used to prevent, eliminate or reduce a significant hazard.

Control Point: Any step at which biological, chemical, or physical factors can be controlled.

Corrective Action: Procedures followed when a deviation occurs.

Criterion: A requirement on which a judgement or decision can be based.

Critical Control Point: A step at which control can be applied and is essential to prevent or eliminate a food safety hazard or reduce it to an acceptable level.

Critical Limit: A maximum and/or minimum value to which a biological, chemical or physical parameter must be controlled at a CCP to prevent, eliminate or reduce to an acceptable level the occurrence of a food safety hazard.

Deviation: Failure to meet a critical limit.

HACCP: A systematic approach to the identification, evaluation, and control of food safety hazards.

HACCP Plan: The written document which is based upon the principles of HACCP and which delineates the procedures to be followed.

HACCP System: The result of the implementation of the HACCP Plan.

HACCP Team: The group of people who are responsible for developing, implementing and maintaining the HACCP system.

Hazard: A biological, chemical, or physical agent that is reasonably likely to cause illness or injury in the absence of its control.

Hazard Analysis: The process of collecting and evaluating information on hazards associated with the food under consideration to decide which are significant and must be addressed in the HACCP plan.

Monitor: To conduct a planned sequence of observations or measurements to assess whether a CCP is under control and to produce an accurate record for future use in verification.

Prerequisite Programs: Procedures, including Good Manufacturing Practices, that address operational conditions providing the foundation for the HACCP system.

Severity: The seriousness of the effect(s) of a hazard.

Step: A point, procedure, operation or stage in the food system from primary production to final consumption.

Validation: That element of verification focused on collecting and evaluating scientific and technical information to determine if the HACCP plan, when properly implemented, will effectively control the hazards.Verification: Those activities, other than monitoring, that determine the validity of the HACCP plan and that the system is operating according to the plan.

HACCP PRINCIPLES

HACCP is a systematic approach to the identification, evaluation, and control of food safety hazards based on the following seven principles:

Principle 1: Conduct a hazard analysis.

Principle 2: Determine the critical control points (CCPs).

Principle 3: Establish critical limits.

Principle 4: Establish monitoring procedures.

Principle 5: Establish corrective actions.

Principle 6: Establish verification procedures.

Principle 7: Establish record-keeping and documentation procedures.

GUIDELINES FOR APPLICATION OF HACCP PRINCIPLES

Sissejuhatus

HACCP is a management system in which food safety is addressed through the analysis and control of biological, chemical, and physical hazards from raw material production, procurement and handling, to manufacturing, distribution and consumption of the finished product. For successful implementation of a HACCP plan, management must be strongly committed to the HACCP concept. A firm commitment to HACCP by top management provides company employees with a sense of the importance of producing safe food.

HACCP is designed for use in all segments of the food industry from growing, harvesting, processing, manufacturing, distributing, and merchandising to preparing food for consumption. Prerequisite programs such as current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMPs) are an essential foundation for the development and implementation of successful HACCP plans. Food safety systems based on the HACCP principles have been successfully applied in food processing plants, retail food stores, and food service operations. The seven principles of HACCP have been universally accepted by government agencies, trade associations and the food industry around the world.

The following guidelines will facilitate the development and implementation of effective HACCP plans. While the specific application of HACCP to manufacturing facilities is emphasized here, these guidelines should be applied as appropriate to each segment of the food industry under consideration.

Prerequisite Programs

The production of safe food products requires that the HACCP system be built upon a solid foundation of prerequisite programs. Examples of common prerequisite programs are listed in Appendix A. Each segment of the food industry must provide the conditions necessary to protect food while it is under their control. This has traditionally been accomplished through the application of cGMPs. These conditions and practices are now considered to be prerequisite to the development and implementation of effective HACCP plans. Prerequisite programs provide the basic environmental and operating conditions that are necessary for the production of safe, wholesome food. Many of the conditions and practices are specified in federal, state and local regulations and guidelines (e.g., cGMPs and Food Code). The Codex Alimentarius General Principles of Food Hygiene describe the basic conditions and practices expected for foods intended for international trade. In addition to the requirements specified in regulations, industry often adopts policies and procedures that are specific to their operations. Many of these are proprietary. While prerequisite programs may impact upon the safety of a food, they also are concerned with ensuring that foods are wholesome and suitable for consumption (Appendix A). HACCP plans are narrower in scope, being limited to ensuring food is safe to consume.

The existence and effectiveness of prerequisite programs should be assessed during the design and implementation of each HACCP plan. All prerequisite programs should be documented and regularly audited. Prerequisite programs are established and managed separately from the HACCP plan. Certain aspects, however, of a prerequisite program may be incorporated into a HACCP plan. For example, many establishments have preventive maintenance procedures for processing equipment to avoid unexpected equipment failure and loss of production. During the development of a HACCP plan, the HACCP team may decide that the routine maintenance and calibration of an oven should be included in the plan as an activity of verification. This would further ensure that all the food in the oven is cooked to the minimum internal temperature that is necessary for food safety.

Education and Training

The success of a HACCP system depends on educating and training management and employees in the importance of their role in producing safe foods. This should also include information the control of foodborne hazards related to all stages of the food chain. It is important to recognize that employees must first understand what HACCP is and then learn the skills necessary to make it function properly. Specific training activities should include working instructions and procedures that outline the tasks of employees monitoring each CCP.

Management must provide adequate time for thorough education and training. Personnel must be given the materials and equipment necessary to perform these tasks. Effective training is an important prerequisite to successful implementation of a HACCP plan.

Developing a HACCP Plan

The format of HACCP plans will vary. In many cases the plans will be product and process specific. However, some plans may use a unit operations approach. Generic HACCP plans can serve as useful guides in the development of process and product HACCP plans however, it is essential that the unique conditions within each facility be considered during the development of all components of the HACCP plan.

In the development of a HACCP plan, five preliminary tasks need to be accomplished before the application of the HACCP principles to a specific product and process. The five preliminary tasks are given in Figure 1.

Figure 1. Preliminary Tasks in the Development of the HACCP Plan

Assemble the HACCP Team

The first task in developing a HACCP plan is to assemble a HACCP team consisting of individuals who have specific knowledge and expertise appropriate to the product and process. It is the team's responsibility to develop the HACCP plan. The team should be multi disciplinary and include individuals from areas such as engineering, production, sanitation, quality assurance, and food microbiology. The team should also include local personnel who are involved in the operation as they are more familiar with the variability and limitations of the operation. In addition, this fosters a sense of ownership among those who must implement the plan. The HACCP team may need assistance from outside experts who are knowledgeable in the potential biological, chemical and/or physical hazards associated with the product and the process. However, a plan which is developed totally by outside sources may be erroneous, incomplete, and lacking in support at the local level.

Due to the technical nature of the information required for hazard analysis, it is recommended that experts who are knowledgeable in the food process should either participate in or verify the completeness of the hazard analysis and the HACCP plan. Such individuals should have the knowledge and experience to correctly: (a) conduct a hazard analysis (b) identify potential hazards (c) identify hazards which must be controlled (d) recommend controls, critical limits, and procedures for monitoring and verification (e) recommend appropriate corrective actions when a deviation occurs (f) recommend research related to the HACCP plan if important information is not known and (g) validate the HACCP plan.

Describe the food and its distribution

The HACCP team first describes the food. This consists of a general description of the food, ingredients, and processing methods. The method of distribution should be described along with information on whether the food is to be distributed frozen, refrigerated, or at ambient temperature.

Describe the intended use and consumers of the food

Describe the normal expected use of the food. The intended consumers may be the general public or a particular segment of the population (e.g., infants, immunocompromised individuals, the elderly, etc.).

Develop a flow diagram which describes the process

The purpose of a flow diagram is to provide a clear, simple outline of the steps involved in the process. The scope of the flow diagram must cover all the steps in the process which are directly under the control of the establishment. In addition, the flow diagram can include steps in the food chain which are before and after the processing that occurs in the establishment. The flow diagram need not be as complex as engineering drawings. A block type flow diagram is sufficiently descriptive (see Appendix B). Also, a simple schematic of the facility is often useful in understanding and evaluating product and process flow.

Verify the flow diagram

The HACCP team should perform an on-site review of the operation to verify the accuracy and completeness of the flow diagram. Modifications should be made to the flow diagram as necessary and documented.

After these five preliminary tasks have been completed, the seven principles of HACCP are applied.

Conduct a hazard analysis (Principle 1)

After addressing the preliminary tasks discussed above, the HACCP team conducts a hazard analysis and identifies appropriate control measures. The purpose of the hazard analysis is to develop a list of hazards which are of such significance that they are reasonably likely to cause injury or illness if not effectively controlled. Hazards that are not reasonably likely to occur would not require further consideration within a HACCP plan. It is important to consider in the hazard analysis the ingredients and raw materials, each step in the process, product storage and distribution, and final preparation and use by the consumer. When conducting a hazard analysis, safety concerns must be differentiated from quality concerns. A hazard is defined as a biological, chemical or physical agent that is reasonably likely to cause illness or injury in the absence of its control. Thus, the word hazard as used in this document is limited to safety.

A thorough hazard analysis is the key to preparing an effective HACCP plan. If the hazard analysis is not done correctly and the hazards warranting control within the HACCP system are not identified, the plan will not be effective regardless of how well it is followed.

The hazard analysis and identification of associated control measures accomplish three objectives: Those hazards and associated control measures are identified. The analysis may identify needed modifications to a process or product so that product safety is further assured or improved. The analysis provides a basis for determining CCPs in Principle 2.

The process of conducting a hazard analysis involves two stages. The first, hazard identification, can be regarded as a brain storming session. During this stage, the HACCP team reviews the ingredients used in the product, the activities conducted at each step in the process and the equipment used, the final product and its method of storage and distribution, and the intended use and consumers of the product. Based on this review, the team develops a list of potential biological, chemical or physical hazards which may be introduced, increased, or controlled at each step in the production process. Appendix C lists examples of questions that may be helpful to consider when identifying potential hazards. Hazard identification focuses on developing a list of potential hazards associated with each process step under direct control of the food operation. A knowledge of any adverse health-related events historically associated with the product will be of value in this exercise.

After the list of potential hazards is assembled, stage two, the hazard evaluation, is conducted. In stage two of the hazard analysis, the HACCP team decides which potential hazards must be addressed in the HACCP plan. During this stage, each potential hazard is evaluated based on the severity of the potential hazard and its likely occurrence. Severity is the seriousness of the consequences of exposure to the hazard. Considerations of severity (e.g., impact of sequelae, and magnitude and duration of illness or injury) can be helpful in understanding the public health impact of the hazard. Consideration of the likely occurrence is usually based upon a combination of experience, epidemiological data, and information in the technical literature. When conducting the hazard evaluation, it is helpful to consider the likelihood of exposure and severity of the potential consequences if the hazard is not properly controlled. In addition, consideration should be given to the effects of short term as well as long term exposure to the potential hazard. Such considerations do not include common dietary choices which lie outside of HACCP. During the evaluation of each potential hazard, the food, its method of preparation, transportation, storage and persons likely to consume the product should be considered to determine how each of these factors may influence the likely occurrence and severity of the hazard being controlled. The team must consider the influence of likely procedures for food preparation and storage and whether the intended consumers are susceptible to a potential hazard. However, there may be differences of opinion, even among experts, as to the likely occurrence and severity of a hazard. The HACCP team may have to rely upon the opinion of experts who assist in the development of the HACCP plan.

Hazards identified in one operation or facility may not be significant in another operation producing the same or a similar product. For example, due to differences in equipment and/or an effective maintenance program, the probability of metal contamination may be significant in one facility but not in another. A summary of the HACCP team deliberations and the rationale developed during the hazard analysis should be kept for future reference. This information will be useful during future reviews and updates of the hazard analysis and the HACCP plan.

Appendix D gives three examples of using a logic sequence in conducting a hazard analysis. While these examples relate to biological hazards, chemical and physical hazards are equally important to consider. Appendix D is for illustration purposes to further explain the stages of hazard analysis for identifying hazards. Hazard identification and evaluation as outlined in Appendix D may eventually be assisted by biological risk assessments as they become available. While the process and output of a risk assessment (NACMCF, 1997) (1) is significantly different from a hazard analysis, the identification of hazards of concern and the hazard evaluation may be facilitated by information from risk assessments. Thus, as risk assessments addressing specific hazards or control factors become available, the HACCP team should take these into consideration.

Upon completion of the hazard analysis, the hazards associated with each step in the production of the food should be listed along with any measure(s) that are used to control the hazard(s). The term control measure is used because not all hazards can be prevented, but virtually all can be controlled. More than one control measure may be required for a specific hazard. On the other hand, more than one hazard may be addressed by a specific control measure (e.g. pasteurization of milk).

For example, if a HACCP team were to conduct a hazard analysis for the production of frozen cooked beef patties (Appendices B and D), enteric pathogens (e.g., Salmonella and verotoxin-producing Escherichia coli) in the raw meat would be identified as hazards. Cooking is a control measure which can be used to eliminate these hazards. The following is an excerpt from a hazard analysis summary table for this product.

Hazard to be addressed in plan?
Y/N

Enteric pathogens:
e.g., Salmonella,
verotoxigenic-E. coli

enteric pathogens have been associated with outbreaks of foodborne illness from undercooked ground beef

The hazard analysis summary could be presented in several different ways. One format is a table such as the one given above. Another could be a narrative summary of the HACCP team's hazard analysis considerations and a summary table listing only the hazards and associated control measures.

Determine critical control points (CCPs) (Principle 2)

A critical control point is defined as a step at which control can be applied and is essential to prevent or eliminate a food safety hazard or reduce it to an acceptable level. The potential hazards that are reasonably likely to cause illness or injury in the absence of their control must be addressed in determining CCPs.

Complete and accurate identification of CCPs is fundamental to controlling food safety hazards. The information developed during the hazard analysis is essential for the HACCP team in identifying which steps in the process are CCPs. One strategy to facilitate the identification of each CCP is the use of a CCP decision tree (Examples of decision trees are given in Appendices E and F). Although application of the CCP decision tree can be useful in determining if a particular step is a CCP for a previously identified hazard, it is merely a tool and not a mandatory element of HACCP. A CCP decision tree is not a substitute for expert knowledge.

Critical control points are located at any step where hazards can be either prevented, eliminated, or reduced to acceptable levels. Examples of CCPs may include: thermal processing, chilling, testing ingredients for chemical residues, product formulation control, and testing product for metal contaminants. CCPs must be carefully developed and documented. In addition, they must be used only for purposes of product safety. For example, a specified heat process, at a given time and temperature designed to destroy a specific microbiological pathogen, could be a CCP. Likewise, refrigeration of a precooked food to prevent hazardous microorganisms from multiplying, or the adjustment of a food to a pH necessary to prevent toxin formation could also be CCPs. Different facilities preparing similar food items can differ in the hazards identified and the steps which are CCPs. This can be due to differences in each facility's layout, equipment, selection of ingredients, processes employed, etc.

Establish critical limits (Principle 3)

A critical limit is a maximum and/or minimum value to which a biological, chemical or physical parameter must be controlled at a CCP to prevent, eliminate or reduce to an acceptable level the occurrence of a food safety hazard. A critical limit is used to distinguish between safe and unsafe operating conditions at a CCP. Critical limits should not be confused with operational limits which are established for reasons other than food safety.

Each CCP will have one or more control measures to assure that the identified hazards are prevented, eliminated or reduced to acceptable levels. Each control measure has one or more associated critical limits. Critical limits may be based upon factors such as: temperature, time, physical dimensions, humidity, moisture level, water activity (aw), pH, titratable acidity, salt concentration, available chlorine, viscosity, preservatives, or sensory information such as aroma and visual appearance. Critical limits must be scientifically based. For each CCP, there is at least one criterion for food safety that is to be met. An example of a criterion is a specific lethality of a cooking process such as a 5D reduction in Salmonella. The critical limits and criteria for food safety may be derived from sources such as regulatory standards and guidelines, literature surveys, experimental results, and experts.

An example is the cooking of beef patties (Appendix B). The process should be designed to ensure the production of a safe product. The hazard analysis for cooked meat patties identified enteric pathogens (e.g., verotoxigenic E. coli such as E. coli O157:H7, and salmonellae) as significant biological hazards. Furthermore, cooking is the step in the process at which control can be applied to reduce the enteric pathogens to an acceptable level. To ensure that an acceptable level is consistently achieved, accurate information is needed on the probable number of the pathogens in the raw patties, their heat resistance, the factors that influence the heating of the patties, and the area of the patty which heats the slowest. Collectively, this information forms the scientific basis for the critical limits that are established. Some of the factors that may affect the thermal destruction of enteric pathogens are listed in the following table. In this example, the HACCP team concluded that a thermal process equivalent to 155° F for 16 seconds would be necessary to assure the safety of this product. To ensure that this time and temperature are attained, the HACCP team for one facility determined that it would be necessary to establish critical limits for the oven temperature and humidity, belt speed (time in oven), patty thickness and composition (e.g., all beef, beef and other ingredients). Control of these factors enables the facility to produce a wide variety of cooked patties, all of which will be processed to a minimum internal temperature of 155° F for 16 seconds. In another facility, the HACCP team may conclude that the best approach is to use the internal patty temperature of 155° F and hold for 16 seconds as critical limits. In this second facility the internal temperature and hold time of the patties are monitored at a frequency to ensure that the critical limits are constantly met as they exit the oven. The example given below applies to the first facility.

Oven temperature:___° F
Time rate of heating and cooling (belt speed in ft/min): ____ft/min
Patty thickness: ____in.
Patty composition: e.g. all beef
Oven humidity: ____% RH

Establish monitoring procedures (Principle 4)

Monitoring is a planned sequence of observations or measurements to assess whether a CCP is under control and to produce an accurate record for future use in verification. Monitoring serves three main purposes. First, monitoring is essential to food safety management in that it facilitates tracking of the operation. If monitoring indicates that there is a trend towards loss of control, then action can be taken to bring the process back into control before a deviation from a critical limit occurs. Second, monitoring is used to determine when there is loss of control and a deviation occurs at a CCP, i.e., exceeding or not meeting a critical limit. When a deviation occurs, an appropriate corrective action must be taken. Third, it provides written documentation for use in verification.

An unsafe food may result if a process is not properly controlled and a deviation occurs. Because of the potentially serious consequences of a critical limit deviation, monitoring procedures must be effective. Ideally, monitoring should be continuous, which is possible with many types of physical and chemical methods. For example, the temperature and time for the scheduled thermal process of low-acid canned foods is recorded continuously on temperature recording charts. If the temperature falls below the scheduled temperature or the time is insufficient, as recorded on the chart, the product from the retort is retained and the disposition determined as in Principle 5. Likewise, pH measurement may be performed continually in fluids or by testing each batch before processing. There are many ways to monitor critical limits on a continuous or batch basis and record the data on charts. Continuous monitoring is always preferred when feasible. Monitoring equipment must be carefully calibrated for accuracy.

Assignment of the responsibility for monitoring is an important consideration for each CCP. Specific assignments will depend on the number of CCPs and control measures and the complexity of monitoring. Personnel who monitor CCPs are often associated with production (e.g., line supervisors, selected line workers and maintenance personnel) and, as required, quality control personnel. Those individuals must be trained in the monitoring technique for which they are responsible, fully understand the purpose and importance of monitoring, be unbiased in monitoring and reporting, and accurately report the results of monitoring. In addition, employees should be trained in procedures to follow when there is a trend towards loss of control so that adjustments can be made in a timely manner to assure that the process remains under control. The person responsible for monitoring must also immediately report a process or product that does not meet critical limits.

All records and documents associated with CCP monitoring should be dated and signed or initialed by the person doing the monitoring.

When it is not possible to monitor a CCP on a continuous basis, it is necessary to establish a monitoring frequency and procedure that will be reliable enough to indicate that the CCP is under control. Statistically designed data collection or sampling systems lend themselves to this purpose.

Most monitoring procedures need to be rapid because they relate to on-line, "real-time" processes and there will not be time for lengthy analytical testing. Examples of monitoring activities include: visual observations and measurement of temperature, time, pH, and moisture level.

Microbiological tests are seldom effective for monitoring due to their time-consuming nature and problems with assuring detection of contaminants. Physical and chemical measurements are often preferred because they are rapid and usually more effective for assuring control of microbiological hazards. For example, the safety of pasteurized milk is based upon measurements of time and temperature of heating rather than testing the heated milk to assure the absence of surviving pathogens.

With certain foods, processes, ingredients, or imports, there may be no alternative to microbiological testing. However, it is important to recognize that a sampling protocol that is adequate to reliably detect low levels of pathogens is seldom possible because of the large number of samples needed. This sampling limitation could result in a false sense of security by those who use an inadequate sampling protocol. In addition, there are technical limitations in many laboratory procedures for detecting and quantitating pathogens and/or their toxins.

Establish corrective actions (Principle 5)

The HACCP system for food safety management is designed to identify health hazards and to establish strategies to prevent, eliminate, or reduce their occurrence. However, ideal circumstances do not always prevail and deviations from established processes may occur. An important purpose of corrective actions is to prevent foods which may be hazardous from reaching consumers. Where there is a deviation from established critical limits, corrective actions are necessary. Therefore, corrective actions should include the following elements: (a) determine and correct the cause of non-compliance (b) determine the disposition of non-compliant product and (c) record the corrective actions that have been taken. Specific corrective actions should be developed in advance for each CCP and included in the HACCP plan. As a minimum, the HACCP plan should specify what is done when a deviation occurs, who is responsible for implementing the corrective actions, and that a record will be developed and maintained of the actions taken. Individuals who have a thorough understanding of the process, product and HACCP plan should be assigned the responsibility for oversight of corrective actions. As appropriate, experts may be consulted to review the information available and to assist in determining disposition of non-compliant product.

Establish verification procedures (Principle 6)

Verification is defined as those activities, other than monitoring, that determine the validity of the HACCP plan and that the system is operating according to the plan. The NAS (1985) (2) pointed out that the major infusion of science in a HACCP system centers on proper identification of the hazards, critical control points, critical limits, and instituting proper verification procedures. These processes should take place during the development and implementation of the HACCP plans and maintenance of the HACCP system. An example of a verification schedule is given in Figure 2.

One aspect of verification is evaluating whether the facility's HACCP system is functioning according to the HACCP plan. An effective HACCP system requires little end-product testing, since sufficient validated safeguards are built in early in the process. Therefore, rather than relying on end-product testing, firms should rely on frequent reviews of their HACCP plan, verification that the HACCP plan is being correctly followed, and review of CCP monitoring and corrective action records.

Another important aspect of verification is the initial validation of the HACCP plan to determine that the plan is scientifically and technically sound, that all hazards have been identified and that if the HACCP plan is properly implemented these hazards will be effectively controlled. Information needed to validate the HACCP plan often include (1) expert advice and scientific studies and (2) in-plant observations, measurements, and evaluations. For example, validation of the cooking process for beef patties should include the scientific justification of the heating times and temperatures needed to obtain an appropriate destruction of pathogenic microorganisms (i.e., enteric pathogens) and studies to confirm that the conditions of cooking will deliver the required time and temperature to each beef patty.

Subsequent validations are performed and documented by a HACCP team or an independent expert as needed. For example, validations are conducted when there is an unexplained system failure a significant product, process or packaging change occurs or new hazards are recognized.

In addition, a periodic comprehensive verification of the HACCP system should be conducted by an unbiased, independent authority. Such authorities can be internal or external to the food operation. This should include a technical evaluation of the hazard analysis and each element of the HACCP plan as well as on-site review of all flow diagrams and appropriate records from operation of the plan. A comprehensive verification is independent of other verification procedures and must be performed to ensure that the HACCP plan is resulting in the control of the hazards. If the results of the comprehensive verification identifies deficiencies, the HACCP team modifies the HACCP plan as necessary.

Verification activities are carried out by individuals within a company, third party experts, and regulatory agencies. It is important that individuals doing verification have appropriate technical expertise to perform this function. The role of regulatory and industry in HACCP was further described by the NACMCF (1994) (3) .

Examples of verification activities are included as Appendix G.

Figure 2. Example of a Company Established HACCP Verification Schedule


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