In 2006 Food Safety Legislation was extended to make it a legal requirement for every registered food business to have in place a Food safety management system based on the principles of Hazard Analysis (HACCP). The FSA developed the original SFBB pack to help small businesses (SME’s) comply with this legislation.
Sally Trice our food safety consultant was closely involved with the initial roll-out and training of SFBB for local authorities in North Hampshire. She has been following the development of the system and has been discussing its use on the many courses she runs for Food Allergy Aware.
Sally stated “There is no doubt that SFBB has helped to simplify the HACCP process for many food businesses and it has become the recommended system for SME’s to comply with the law. The pack, if completed correctly could form part of a due diligence defence if the business was ever taken to court.”
The SFBB Pack has recently been updated to offer guidance on the safe methods on ‘Managing Food Allergens’ with the aim that the pack will help food businesses meet the new requirements under the EU regulation 1169/2011 and give a better understanding of their obligations regarding allergens in the food they produce and serve.
Sally advises all businesses currently using the SFBB resource for their Food Safety Management System to visit the FSA website and take a look at the updated pack. It is all available to download and there are free tools, templates and training resources which can help the business to raise staff awareness.
Remember that all records should be accurate, verifiable and up to date. The ‘Food Safety Management System’ should be kept on site at all times and staff should be aware of their responsibilities regarding the communication of allergen information to customers.
Here are some top tips offered by Chun Han Chan from the FSA to help businesses deal with allergen dietary requests.
- When someone asks if a food contains a particular allergen make sure the info you provide is correct – always check the ingredients with your chef/kitchen team and never guess.
- If you are selling foods with allergens in them, list them and make sure information is up to date.
- When cooking, make sure you know what’s in the ingredients, are you changing the recipe or any ingredients you use?
- If there are changes to allergen information for the dishes provided ensure your staff know of these and are trained to deliver this information to your customers.
- Think about cooking oils, marinades, dressings, toppings, sauces and garnishes – are you adding any allergens?
- If you are making food for someone with an allergy, food intolerance of coeliac disease, use fresh ingredients, clean work surfaces, wash your hands before preparing the food.
Top tips to help as recommended by Chun Han Chan of the FSA: Courtesy of Quickbites magazine
Link to allergies section click here