FSSC 22000 and why you should check if your supplier is accredited

As part of our commitment to continuous improvement, Viking Food Solutions recently upgraded our food safety certification to the FSSC 22000 Standard.


But why should our customers care about this? And why should businesses within the food industry consider safety certifications a priority?


Why Does Food Safety Matter?


Operating in the food and beverage industry has serious inherent risks. Selling unsafe food to your customers is one of the greatest nightmares most businesses in our industry can face.


Not only can the potential damage it causes your customer be serious, it can also have an equally devasting impact on your business.

Being sued for providing below-standard food is only one of the potential repercussions you could face. Giving only passing attention to this vital area of your business is a dangerous mindset.


For a business that deals in food, there are few more vital areas of risk management than making absolutely sure that both you and your supply chain can be relied upon to provide safe, regulated and consistent products.


But How does Certification Help?


Why is it necessary to have a certification in food safety to manage this challenge, instead of just relying on common sense and basic hygiene practices?


Well, the key, most vital element of food safety programs like FSSC 22000 is lowering risk to the end consumer. This is done by introducing specific, tested, and proved procedures, checks and balances to try and eliminate any possibility of contamination, allergens, food fraud or other common issues.


It also helps ensure traceability and put procedures in place to fix a problem quickly and effectively should it arise.


While a business without such certification will likely still do their best to ensure food safety, without the globally approved rigorous programs, controls, and audits in place it is hard to feel the same peace of mind that a company is doing everything in their power to remove risk to your customers.


What is FSSC 22000 and Why is it Important?


Receiving the FSSC 22000 Certification acknowledges that a business has reached their food safety standard. It can be applied to businesses across the food and beverage industry – from packaging suppliers to food manufacturers, to food additive and bio-culture creators.


It utilises elements of the HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) system, as well as regulating food defence, traceability and hygiene.


The most important thing about the FSSC 22000 Standard is that it is GFSI Certified. The GFSI is an international body that regulates food safety systems globally. Any standard accepted by them demonstrates that the scheme meets the highest standards globally leading to international food industry acceptance.


It automatically allows businesses to be once certified, accepted everywhere. This makes international exports and import processes a lot easier, as you can feel assured knowing the same food safety standard is applicable around the globe.


Why should you check your supplier is accredited?


For the sake of your customers, and for your own business risk management, it should be a matter of great importance that all of your relevant suppliers have food safety programs. It allows you to rely on them more fully, and gives reassurance that if an issue arises you have a clear way to deal with it.


If possible, and especially if you deal internationally, it is best that your suppliers have GSFI-Certified food safety programs, as these provide the extra level of coverage and confidence a business needs to operate efficiently in the food and beverage industry.