FOOD SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (FSMS)

The food safety management system means the adoption of good manufacturing practices, good hygienic practices, hazard analysis and critical control point and such other practices, as may be specified by regulations for the purpose of the food business. Section 16(2)c of the FSSA mandates one of the duties of FSSAI by stating that FSSAI shall frame mechanisms and guidelines for accreditation of certifications bodies engaged in certification of food safety management systems for food business.

Further, as per sec 44 of the FSSA, FSSAI may recognize any organizations or agency for the purposes of a food safety audit and checking the compliance with FSMS as required under the act and /or the regulations. The licensing authorities while reviewing applications for grant of a license under the provisions of the FSSA and / or the regulations ask for the attachment of the document regarding the FSMS plan whatever applicable. In the absence of such a plan, they may insist on a declaration stating that the food business shall be equipped with FSMS.

Keeping in view of the above, it is clear that any manufacturing unit producing food for human consumption must have FSMS in the unit. This will help to ensure production of safe food for human consumption. The ultimate goal is of generally having FSMS in place for food business. Therefore, the requirements of FSMS shall be applicable to the food chain starting right from the production of food to the final consumption of this food by the consumer.

The food chain thus can be contaminated at any point from farm to fork as demonstrated below:

  • Farms
  • Transport
  • Mill Slaughter food processor
  • Distribution wholesale stockiest
  • Retail Restaurant
  • Consumer

Requirement of an organization in the food chain as specified by the international standards organization

International standards Organizations (ISO) has also developed requirements of FSMS as documents ISO: 22000:2005. It specifies requirements of FSMS in the food chain of an organization to control food safety hazards so as to ensure that the food is safe at the time of its consumption. It can be applicable to any organization big or small to accomplish the ultimate goal i.e safety of food available to the consumer.

Key elements of the FSMS

  • Good practices/ pre requisite practices (PRP’s);

PRP’s or good practices comprise of eight principles of good hygienic practices (GHP) which are required to be followed by a food business at every step of the food chain: They are:

  • Primary production
  • Establishment
  • Control of operation
  • Maintenance and sanitation
  • Personal hygiene
  • Transportation
  • Product information and consumer awareness
  • Training
  • Contaminated water from polluted rivers of India
  • Hazard analysis critical controls points (HACCP)

A HACCP system helps in the identification of hazards and helps in the management of such hazards throughout the supply chain during the process of production.

  • Management elements/systems;
  • Food safety plan, policies, training, monitoring, supervision and reporting
  • Statutory and regulatory requirements; and
  • FMS is mandatory for food businesses. The mandatory requirement of FSMS for specific food business is enumerated in schedule 4 of the regulations.
  • Communication

Communication of information is important at every stage of the food chain and food production. The information received or available must be communicated to persons responsible for food safety at each point of the food production and at every stage of the food chain.

FAQ’s

  • What is meant by Food safety management systems (FSMS)?

The Food safety management systems (FSMS) is a network of interrelated elements that combine to ensure that foods does not cause adverse health effects to human beings. These elements include programmes, plans, polocies, procedures, practices, processes, goals, objectives, methods, controls, roles, responsibilities, relationships, documents, records and resources.

  • What are the key elements of FSMS and Get Online FSSAI Registration Service
  1. Good practices/ pre requisite practices (PRP’s);
  2. Hazard analysis critical controls points (HACCP)
  3. Management elements/systems;
  4. Statutory and regulatory requirements; and
  5. Communication
  • Which section of the FSSA describes FSMS?

Section 16 2 c provides for the mechanism for accreditation of certification bodies for food safety management systems and section 44 of FSSA provides for the recognition of an organization or agency for conducting food safety audits and checking compliance with the food safety management system, required under the regulations.

  • What is the purpose of FSMS?

The purpose of FSMS is to ensure the manufacture, storage, distribution and sale of safe food.