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Audit checklist template
Date of audit:
Table 1: Audit checklist
Area Compliant? CAR reference/Observations Crit
Min IMP 1.0 Pre-audit 1.1 At start or before the audit, establish if there have been any changes to the existing scope, including:
the Food safety plan
product types/variety extensions
new equipment/changes to processes
new raw material sources
If yes, note these details and then set up audit trails to review that these changes have been effectively implemented into the existing HACCP system when reviewing documents.
Add these questions and audit trails into Section 23 of this checklist. 2.0 Food safety responsibilities and resources 2.1 Is there at least one person identified as accountable and responsible for development, implementation and ongoing maintenance of the Food safety systems? (In Victoria – this is the Food safety supervisor).
Provide the name of that person:
2.2 Verify that:
the HACCP system (the Food safety plan) is developed, reviewed and managed by a multi-disciplinary team
key personnel identified as HACCP team members have adequate HACCP training and appropriate experience. Records sighted. 2.3 If the company does not have the appropriate expertise and has used external expertise to develop and review the HACCP system, it must:
show the credentials of the external consultant
re-confirm that day-to-day management remains the responsibility of the company. 3.0 Food safety policy 3.1 Food safety policy requires that:
company product safety policy is defined
the policy shall refer to the company’s intentions to:
meet its obligations to produce safe and legal products
to comply with food safety regulations
meet its obligations to customers.
company product safety policy is clearly communicated to employees and implemented. 3.2 Does the company have a quality policy or mission statement? 3.3 Is there a documented Quality system in place?
Does it include HACCP documentation? 3.4 Is the Quality system accredited and, if so, by whom? 3.5 Do the Hazard audit tables reflect the risks associated with the product? 3.6 Does the company have a documented Customer complaints handling procedure? 3.7 Does the company have a documented Recall procedure?
4.0 HACCP methodology and documentation 4.1 Has the Food safety plan been based on the Codex Alimentarius HACCP principles and is reference made to relevant legislation, codes of practice or guidelines?
Does the Food safety plan identify, monitor and manage physical, chemical or microbiological risks in products and processes?
(Victorian companies: does the company use an approved food safety plan template?) 4.2 Does the Food safety plan describe what processes are covered within the context of the paddock to plate through chain process? 4.3 Has a food safety plan been written to include all products and processes?
Total number of Food safety plans within audit scope:
Date of the Food safety plan(s): 4.4 Does the Food safety plan include an appropriate flow diagram of the process? 4.5 Check that the company has used HACCP principles to:
conduct a hazard analysis
determine the Critical control points (CCPs) by use of the Codex decision tree when determining CCPs
establish critical limits
establish a system to monitor control of the CCPs. Is the established frequency for monitoring each CCP sufficient to control the hazard?
establish the corrective action to be taken when monitoring indicates that a particular CCP is not under control
establish procedures of validation and verification to confirm that the HACCP system is working effectively, including auditing of the HACCP system
establish documentation concerning all procedures and records appropriate to these principles and their application
establish the records required to show ongoing conformance to CCP requirements. Also, check that there are records to show that effective corrective action occurred when there has been a non-conformance to these CCP requirements. 4.6 The HACCP study shall be based on an assessment of risk. In conducting the hazard analysis, wherever possible, the following shall be included:
the likely occurrence of hazards (physical, microbiological and chemical) and the severity of their adverse health effects
the qualitative and/or quantitative evaluation of the presence of hazards
the survival and multiplication of micro-organisms of concern. 4.7 Check that the company has included in its documentation some reference to its prerequisite programs which are there to support the HACCP system. For example, Good manufacturing practice (GMP), Quality assurance, Allergen control, etc. (See also later sections in checklist). 5.0 Product information/specifications 5.1 Does the Food safety plan reference a complete raw materials list?
Does each Food safety plan clearly describe the final product and its intended use?
This can often be in the form of appropriate specifications:
raw materials (including ingredients and packaging)
intermediate/semi-processed products (where appropriate)
recipes/formulations/batch sheets (where appropriate). 5.2 Are specifications regularly reviewed to ensure adequacy? 5.3 Are characteristics of the product adequately defined? Consider:
raw materials and additives used
description of traceability from raw materials to delivery
general product characteristics
specific food safety characteristics (composition, chemical, microbiological and physical characteristics)
specific requirements (relevant legislation, customer demands)
shelf life – evidence to support claim. 5.4 Are characteristics for use adequately defined? Consider:
target groups that the product(s) are intended for sale to (ie Immunodeficient populations, babies, preschoolers, pregnant women, patients, elderly people, diabetics, etc)
information on the label, including directions for use
whether Critical control points (CCPs) concerning the methods of storage and use have been checked
known improper use. 6.0 Process information 6.1 Flow diagrams
Are these periodically validated to ensure they include:
transfer and/or delay steps
immediate storage steps
subcontracted processes (on or off site)
reprocessing/recycling loops? 6.2 Layouts of the production process
Check these are documented to ensure consideration to:
regulatory layout requirements
the possibility of cross-contamination
air currents in high-care areas
pest control plans. 6.3 Critical control points (CCPs)
For each process step defined as a CCP, check that the documents define:
responsibility for the monitoring of this CCP
critical limit and what is its pass/fail criteria
frequency of the monitoring check
corrective action if outside of critical limit
what will constitute the record of the CCP check
responsibility, frequency and record of the verification check of the CCP record. 6.4 Corrective actions
Is there a documented procedure for recording food safety incidents and is it used to ensure appropriate correct action? Also, where applicable, does the procedure make provision for investigation and follow up to identify root causes to prevent likely recurrence?
Is there a customer complaint system which responds to and investigates the causes of non-conformance to prevent recurrence? Is feedback provided to the customer?
Does it trigger any withdrawal or recall procedures that may be necessary? 6.5 Non-conforming product
Identification and disposition of non-conforming product is undertaken in accordance with documented procedures and under the directive of an authorised person? For example, release, hold, rework and/or dump. 7.0 Verification 7.1 Check that a verification schedule exists, describing the range of verification activities. Check also that the schedule describes the activity, responsibility, frequency and records.
It should include some or all of the following:
verification of cleaning and sanitation
verification of CCP record compliance
verification of GMP policy compliance
verification of equipment accuracy. 7.2 Is there sufficient evidence of the implementation of the Verification schedule? 7.3 Is there evidence of internal audits conducted by personnel independent of the area being audited? 7.4 Is there evidence of management review processes to show periodic verification and analysis of at least:
customer and consumer complaints.
Where deviations from any of the above requirements have occurred, review that corrective actions have been taken in a timely manner and closed off appropriately. 7.5 There is a system for ensuring verification of the applicable regulations and/or food laws to ensure compliance to these obligations. 8.0 Validation 8.1 The company has data to substantiate the claims related to food safety and/or regulatory compliance, for example:
shelf life studies have been conducted to verify the product is safe according to its use-by date as claimed on the packaging
special product claims. For example, fat free, gluten free, Nutritional information panel, etc
special allergen statements (eg nut free)
preparation or storage instructions to customers for safe handling of the product. For example, heating instructions, statements like ‘consume within four days of opening’. 9.0 Traceability system 9.1 Does the traceability system enable identification of product lots and their batches of raw materials through to production and the distribution records? 9.2 Are traceability records maintained for a defined and sufficient period of time? (two years) 9.3 Is there a documented product withdrawal/recall procedure? 9.4 Is the system periodically tested by a mock recall at frequencies proscribed by customers or a company policy? (generally one to two times a year) 9.5 Set up a traceability exercise during the audit to verify its effectiveness. Time how long it takes. 9.6 Does the company have an approved supplier program? Prerequisite programs (PRPs)
Support programs are established, implemented and maintained across the entire production system and are to a level as deemed appropriate by the HACCP team. PRPs are to assist in controlling:
the likelihood of food safety hazards occurring
contamination of products including cross-contamination
maintaining food safety in product and process environment
They include but are not limited to the following: 10 Supply chain management 10.1 Has the Food safety plan identified which purchased and/or incoming materials could be a source of a significant food safety hazard?
Note: incoming materials requirements include: ingredients, raw materials, processing aids, seedlings, food contact packaging, secondary packaging materials, agricultural chemicals, cleaning chemicals, ice, water, etc. 10.2 Does the Raw material risk assessment drive the Incoming inspection and test plan? 10.3 Are all goods received and inspected as prescribed by the Inspection and test quality plan? 10.4 Is there a system for handling supplier related non-conformances? Do records show evidence of corrective actions when incidents occur? 10.5 Do procedures exist for approval and removal of suppliers from the Approved supplier system?
Does it also include approval of emergency alternative suppliers? 11 Allergen management 11.1 Allergen identification and control includes:
a current list of allergens present in all raw materials and finished product
policy to prevent cross-contamination of non-allergenic product, including: scheduling, rework, production runs, separate processes, etc
records kept for allergen use, type, product labelling. 11.2 What preventative measures are in place to provide allergen control between different product runs? 11.3 Are any of the following products produced, packaged or stored on the premises?
Products containing gluten? For example, wheat starch, rye, barley or triticale?
Egg products, nuts and nut products, sesame products, milk and milk products, soybean products? 11.4 Is testing carried out to detect residual allergens? 11.5 Are dust collection units installed?
Is there regular pneumatic back flushing of these units? 12 Design of production facilities 12.1 Are there adequate standards maintained to safeguard the product? Consider, as needed:
product flow (eg for raw and cooked foods)
building interior (eg lighting, floors, employee facilities)
building exterior (eg location, waste management)
utilities (eg water, air). 13 Employee hygiene policy 13.1 Are there hygiene and security policies and procedures?
Does the company communicate the hygiene requirements to all employees, visitors and contractors?
Check that records are maintained for details of visitor’s entry and departure into process area, as appropriate. 13.2 Are the following prohibited in processing areas?
jewellery – including earrings, bracelets and rings
nail polish and false fingernails
eating and drinking.
Are personal items stored outside the process areas? If not, is this justified on the basis of risk? 13.3 Check there are processes to manage staff:
washing hands policy, including the use of sanitiser and/or gloves
if they have an infectious diseases as prescribed by FSANZ FSS 3.2.2. 13.4 Are hand washing facilities located in toilets, amenities rooms and cleaning areas?
In areas where employees handle food?
Supplied with warm running water?
Antibacterial soap, paper towel and bin supplied? 13.5 Are good hygiene practices observed to be followed by employees?
Are hair covers provided and worn in processing and packaging areas? 13.6 Are employee uniforms supplied? Are employee uniforms laundered in house? Is consideration given to temperature of laundering water?
If employees supply their own clothing, is it clean and adequate for the tasks performed? 13.7 Are adequate, clean uniforms provided? (ie no top pockets, no buttons, uniforms not worn off site)
Are uniforms cleaned or laundered by an external laundry service? 13.8 Are hands washed? 13.9 Are gloves provided for operators and is there a procedure for the use and changing of the item? 13.10 Are there injury procedures for protection of employee wounds? 13.11 Is personnel movement restricted from raw to processed food areas, where applicable? 14 Factory hygiene policy: walk through 14.1 Exclusion of physical contaminant hazards in high-risk food processing areas.
Where they cannot be excluded, are there adequate control measures documented and implemented for: 14.2 glass 14.3 metal 14.4 bone 14.5 wood 14.6 rubber 14.7 plastics (soft) 14.8 plastics (hard) 14.9 other (eg insects) 14.10 Do customer complaint trends demonstrate that the hazards listed above are under sufficient control? If not, specify in what category it is not. 14.11 All packaging material that comes into contact with food products is made of material that doesn’t contaminate food? Packaging material specifications sighted stating packaging material is food grade. 14.12 During the packing process, is product protected from damage, including contamination? 14.13 Are packaging materials stored in appropriate conditions and clearly identified? 14.14 Is there in-line metal detection?
What checks are performed to ensure the detector is working properly?
How often are checks performed? 14.15 Is there any scalping in the process? 14.16 Are checks carried out on weighing devices?
What is the frequency of the calibration? 14.17 What other processes are carried out during the packing process? 14.18 Garbage is stored appropriately and bins are provided? 14.19 Are there devices to reduce contaminant hazards?
Has there been consideration to use of magnets, sieves, screens, metal detectors, X-ray machines and/or fine filters?
Where present, are devices positioned at appropriate locations to ensure maximum product protection?
How often are checks carried out? 14.20 Dropped product policy
Are there controls to ensure that product that is dropped on unsanitised or contaminated surface is discarded to eliminate contamination to product? 14.21 Are incoming goods deliveries checked? If so, what records are taken? 14.22 Are raw materials stored so as to prevent contamination? Are food products arriving for repacking stored under appropriate conditions and clearly identified? 14.23 Is the incoming goods receipt area maintained in a clean and hygienic manner?
Are floors, walls and ceilings maintained in good condition? 14.24 Is there adequate ventilation to remove fumes? 14.25 Vents are not located directly near exposed packaging? 14.26 Is there adequate lighting? (refer to AS1680 for recommendations) 14.27 Are premises maintained in a clean and hygienic manner? 14.28 Are floors in good condition and clean? 14.29 Are walls and ceilings sealed to prevent entry of dirt, dust and pests? Are they maintained in a clean condition? 14.30 Are pipes that pass through external openings sealed to prevent the entry of pests? 14.31 Can fittings and fixtures be easily cleaned? 14.32 Are packaging lines designed so as to prevent cross-contamination? 14.33 Wood and glass, paper and plastic off cuts minimised in manufacturing areas? No potential to contaminate packaging? 14.34 Is there adequate product traceability, date coding on inner and outer cartons? 14.35 Despatch area – is the final packed product stored and transported under appropriate conditions? 14.36 Is this area hygienic? 14.37 What end product testing is carried out?
Chemical? 15 Chemical control 15.1 Has the company conducted a food safety hazard assessment of the chemicals used? 15.2 Are food-grade lubricants used on food contact equipment? 15.3 Are non-food-grade chemicals stored and handled so as to minimise potential contamination? (eg paints, cleaners, detergents, diesel, battery fluids, inkjet thinners, etc?) 16 Pest control 16.1 Is there a program to minimise the entry of rodents, insects and birds in the manufacturing and warehousing areas? 16.2 Are there storage bait station maps identifying their type and location? 16.3 Is one of the technicians a registered pest controller? Is the contractor licensed for chemical applications where needed? Records sighted. 16.4 Electronic pest devices to trap insects are located correctly and do not scatter dead insects onto food? 16.5 Are the pest control chemicals approved for use in food plants? Are they stored correctly? 16.6 Are there points of possible ingress of pests? For example, are doors in the processing storage area closed or are there holes in the walls? Is there any evidence of infestation? 16.7 Is there regular removal of waste and rubbish to prevent harbourage? 17 Cleaning and sanitation 17.1 Are cleaning and sanitation requirements established, documented and implemented? This should include: responsibility, task to be performed, chemicals and equipment used. 17.2 Are there records to prove compliance to the Cleaning and sanitation schedule? 17.3 Who is responsible for cleaning? 17.4 Are cleaning chemicals fit for purpose and stored appropriately? 17.5 What types of chemicals are used?
What is the name of the supplier? 17.6 Is cleaning equipment stored in an hygienic manner?
Separate cleaning equipment used for amenities area? 17.7 Are there Material safety data sheets (MSDS) for all chemicals used on site? 17.8 Is there a system for verifying the effectiveness of the sanitation program? Consider, where appropriate:
environmental monitoring using rapid methods and/or microbiological swabbing
allergen validation, if required.
Are records of results and corrective actions maintained? 17.9 Is there evidence that corrective action occurs when incomplete or inadequate sanitation has been identified? 17.10 No evidence of dirt or debris in production areas? 17.11 Are walls, floors and ceilings clean? 18 Equipment maintenance and calibration 18.1 Do records show activities by maintenance personnel have added to the customer complaints? For example, has foreign matter been found in product, etc? 18.2 Are Food safety control points managed by breakdown maintenance? Are hygiene controls complied with when work occurs in high-risk hygiene areas? 18.3 Are Food safety control points managed by preventative maintenance programs? If yes, have these been done at the prescribed frequencies? 18.4 Are calibration procedures developed, documented and implemented to ensure that all parameters in the Food safety plan read accurately at the time of use?
Do they refer to:
frequency of calibration
criteria for degree of accuracy
methods for calibration checks and reference to recognised standards
method of identifying equipment when it is found to be out of calibration
when equipment is found to be out of calibration, the progress for assessment of impact on integrity
records of all calibration checks, of authorised calibration personnel and corrective actions as required? 19 Training 19.1 Have procedures been developed, documented and implemented to ensure activities, duties and functions that have an effect on the Food safety plan are undertaken by a suitably trained person? 19.2 Are there suitable induction processes for visitors, contractors and casuals?
Do records exist of these occurring? 19.3 How is training provided? In house or third party? Are records kept? 20 Transportation 20.1 Have procedures been developed and implemented to ensure activities related to storage and distribution of the food products are undertaken to a defined standard? 20.2 Are any parts of the transportation loops undertaken by outside contractors?
If yes, what controls exist to ensure standards are defined, understood and periodically verified? 21 Document control 21.1 Check that procedures exist for document control which ensure that systems are developed for:
approval and issuing of new documents
identifying general changes and changes to the revision status of documents
accessing documents at points of use
identifying and controlling the distribution of documents
preventing the use of obsolete documents. 22 Records 22.1 The company has a record filing system to ensure easy retrieval of the obligatory records and data. These are: 22.2 validation records to substantiate food safety characteristics of the product, including shelf life 22.3 detailed records by the HACCP teams with respect to the Risk assessments and also the establishment of the Critical control points (CCPs) 22.4 records of any subsequent HACCP reviews or introduced changes to the HACCP plans 22.5 expertise and training of employees involved in the HACCP team and CCP monitoring 22.6 CCP monitoring and reports (dated and signed) 22.7 records of CCP deviations and corrective actions 22.8 records of non-conformities and corrective actions including customer complaints, product withdrawals and recalls 22.9 records of traceability for use from raw material up to and including the delivery of products 22.10 audit reports and verification reports 22.11 management reviews 22.12 process and product evaluations and tests 23 Change control 23.1 Is there a system for identifying changed conditions to trigger a new review of HACCP systems? For example, new final products, new ingredients, changed suppliers and/or new equipment?
Are these changes assessed for their impact on the Food safety plan and its prerequisite programs? End of checklist
2 Food Safety Auditing Toolbox
Audit checklist template
Food Safety Auditing Toolbox 1
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ords of results and corrective actions maintained? 17.9 Is there evidence that corrective action occurs when incomplete or inadequate sanitation has been identified? 1