Retail Food Safety Guide
Consumers, citizens and policymakers are making increasingly high food safety demands. Food retailers have a duty to tackle this topic, but this also presents an opportunity to find new ways of profiling themselves and creating brand differentiation.
Existing and proposed legislation, such as EU Regulation 1169/2011 on the provision of food information to consumers, is increasingly placing responsibility for food safety on retailers’ shoulders. Such regulations stipulate extensive declarations, seamless traceability and effective measures for avoiding product recalls. Fresh produce and products prepared in the backroom particularly allow retailers to demonstrate their ability to ensure greater food safety.
For consumers, it is very important to have access to detailed additional information about a product. Dietary plans, allergies and risk awareness all play a part in purchasing decisions. In search of a carefree shopping experience, consumers turn to retailers who continually improve their food safety levels. Retailers who credibly exemplify their food safety with effective measures are rewarded with loyal customers who trust their brand.
This guide takes you through the existing food safety standards and offers checklists and planning aids to help you adapt your processes. The focus is on weighing and prepacking-related measures which can contribute to greater food safety.
Monitoring Food Safety
When it comes to ensuring the safety of food products, traceability is an important instrument. Food retailers rely on documentation about internal and external processes in order to preclude risks.
Since 2005, EU Regulation 178/2002 has legally required all food products to be traceable. When receiving goods, food retailers check the full documentation of each and every product and pass on the mandatory information right up until the goods are sold. In the case of loose goods and products prepared in the backroom, such as bakery items or convenience products, the retailer is required to document the necessary stages of further processing and storage in order to contribute to better food safety.
In order to comply with the new EU Regulation on the provision of food information 1169/2011, even more information is required from the processing chain. In the future, more details will be passed on to consumers about fresh products in particular. The existing traceability framework will provide support for this task. Consumers will benefit from deeper insight into the products’ metadata.