1. Make sure you’re current on the latest regulatory requirements so that your food plant programs are compliant before the regulations are enforced.
The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) has certainly changed the food safety climate in recent years and has impacted both domestic and foreign food companies. While many FSMA requirements immediately took effect in 2011, such as bi-annual facility registration, others required rulemaking and have staggered effective dates. One of the most significant effective dates is almost upon us. The effective date for compliance to the Hazard Analysis and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Human Food Rule for facilities is as follows:
- Very small business (<$1,000,000 USD annual revenue) September 17, 2018
- Small business (<500 FTE) September 17, 2017
- All other September 17, 2016
AIB’s professional staff have been reviewing and interpreting the latest updates coming from the FDA as they roll out and have created a suite of training tools to help you comply. The FSMA: Pathway to Compliance seminar is offered at different locations throughout the year to give you practical advice for updating your food safety and food defense programs.
2. Put your on-floor food safety practices through the test to see if they’ll pass a third-party inspection.
Many facilities are gearing up for their busiest production time of the year and might be surprised to learn that this is actually a great time of year to see how their on-floor practices line up with their written programs. Seasonal employees new to your operation, high production demands, and changing regulatory and customer requirements…wow, that’s a lot to keep up with! We agree – which is why we think it’s the perfect time to add a training inspection to the madness to make sure your programs are running according to plan. Don’t wait until your slowest time of year to conduct a training inspection. Do it now so that you can ensure that your employees are following written programs and procedures by the book even under high levels of stress.
If you’re planning to add a GMP Inspection to your current audit/inspection lineup and are not quite confident that your facility is 100% prepared to meet the new requirements in AIB’s 2017 Consolidated Standards for Inspection, a GMP Training Inspection is an excellent starting point. This service is perfect for anyone new to food safety audits and inspections. An AIB food safety professional will conduct the exercise at your plant just as they would during an actual inspection, but instead of receiving a score or recognition document, you’ll get helpful, professional advice about what improvements you can make to enhance your food safety program and prepare for an actual audit. Another non-scored service option that focuses on inspection rather than paperwork to identify and resolve food safety issues is AIB’s Inspection Only. During this non-scored inspection, one of our food safety professionals will spend 100% of the visit on the floor identifying risks and suggesting opportunities for improvement and corrective action.
3. Invest in your most promising personnel to develop future leaders within your organization.
Did you know that it actually costs more to hire new employees to manage your food safety programs than it does to invest training dollars in developing your existing workforce? Show your most dedicated up-and-comers how committed you are to helping them climb their career ladders by investing a couple hundred dollars into continuing their education. What’s even sweeter? You don’t have to pay a dime for travel expenses or sacrifice your employees’ valuable time in the plant.
AIB International offers a number of distance learning products and in-plant training geared toward helping your staff add new skills to their repertoires. Coming in at a price tag of around $500 or less, our online courses, distance learning products, and webinars are the perfect solution to affordable training from the convenience of home. Some of our most popular options include:
- HACCP Online
- Food Defense Coordinator Online
- Microbiology and Food Safety Webinar ONLY $199!
- Food Safety & Sanitation Distance Learning Course
Don’t let your remaining 2016 training budget go to waste. Even the most meager budgets can still be allocated in a way that will benefit your bottom line – delivering a safe, quality product to consumers. Start investing today!