Module 1 – Introduction to HACCP

Definition of HACCP

Definition: HACCP is a systematic process of identifying and assessing hazards and risks associated with a food operation and defining the means of their control.

  • Hazards have the potential to cause harm and can be biological (e.g. bacteria), chemical (e.g. cleaners) or physical (e.g. glass fragments).

Evolution of HACCP

  • In the 1960’s the Pillsbury Corporation developed a food safety control system called “HACCP” (Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points).
  • This “zero defect” food system was developed at the request of NASA to prevent foodborne illness for the first manned space mission.
  •  Later, the HACCP concept was publicly presented at the first conference for food protection in 1971. 

Evolution of HACCP in Canada

  • Canada’s first mandatory food safety inspection program based on  HACCP principles was developed by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.
  • The system, called the Quality Management Program (QMP) became mandatory for Canadian fish and seafood exporting companies, in 1992.
  • In 1993, Agriculture Canada developed the Food Safety Enhancement Program (FSEP) for various commodity groups.
  • In 2005, this HACCP program became mandatory for federally registered meat processors which export out of province.
  • In 2015 food businesses conducting certain activities require a license to carry out certain activities. Some businesses will also require a Preventive Control Plan such as HACCP.  This is governed under the Safe Food for Canadians Act
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  • 1960’s:   Pillsbury develops HACCP concept for NASA and later adopts it as a company wide food protection system
  • 1971:   HACCP Concept presented for the first time in the US at a National Conference on Food Protection, where risk assessments were combined with critical control points
  • 1973:   A HACCP system was adopted for the Low-Acid canned Food Regulations following a botulism outbreak in canned soup.
  • 1983:   WHO Europe recommends HACCP
  • 1991/93:  Codex Alimentarius includes HACCP in Codes and issues HACCP guidelines
  • 1992:  Canada’s DFO mandates HACCP for seafood/fish exporting companies.
  • 1993-1995:  FAO and WHO consultations
  • 1993:  Canada develops FSEP HACCP system for agriculture based processors.
  • 1997:   Codex issues revised guidelines. FDA’s Seafood HACCP becomes mandatory.
  • 2005:   FSEP is mandatory for federal (Canadian) meat facilities.
  • 2015:  Safe Food for Canadians Regulations.