If you are involved in packaging the various goods you produce, you have a few crucial considerations. It’s essential to do everything right and make sure you follow the requirements – or you can increase your risk when it comes to contamination, which can result in illness and even prosecution. Your process for food packaging needs to be as thorough as possible, and it also has to adhere to specific regulations, which means you need to have a good knowledge of what is required in the industry, plus have the proper equipment and skills. There are also other essential factors you should think about with the packaging of food and beverage products – so here’s what you should know.
The necessary accreditations
If you handle raw or bare products, you need a certification that shows meticulous hygiene and safety procedures. When you choose a contract packing firm to help you with your food or beverage packing requirements, they need to follow the strictest processes and procedures to protect your product and reduce the risk of a product recall, as confirmed by Cannonpacking.co.uk/contract-packing/.
You also need to have proper insurance coverage that can help you in case of any problems with recall, but if you are relying on a contract packer, they also need to ensure that they have a good insurance policy in place.
If you are dealing with raw food to be sold in shops and supermarkets, you need a BRCGS accreditation, which the Global Food Safety Initiative recognises for consumer and brand protection. With this, food product manufacturers can fulfil their obligations under the law to protect end consumers. When you decide to work with a contract packer, make it a point to visit their facility. The UK follows legislation regarding materials that come in contact with food, so ask your contract packer if they can provide you with a declaration of compliance as well.
Protocols for hygiene
As soon as the food arrives at the packaging premises up to the completion of packaging, your products need to be stored in a hygienic and clean environment. The environment should be regularly cleaned so there is no risk of cross-contamination. You can also avoid the risk of cross-contamination in other ways, like checking the delivery, ensuring proper storage, rotating stocks effectively, and having well-trained, skilled staff. You would also need to have appropriate controls for various processes, such as cooling or cooking, and ensure that you follow factory cleaning and hygiene standards.
Those who deal with the packaging of your food or beverage should follow stringent procedures regarding hand sanitation, protective gear and clothing, and proper footwear. For example, those handling food should wear gloves and hairnets.
Know your options for packaging
The use of the proper materials can extend the shelf life of your products and decrease food wastage. However, packaging has to protect your food products from the environment and other external factors. In addition, your packaging should ensure the food’s safety whilst in transit.
Different kinds of plastic are used for food packaging, including polyester, polypropylene, and PET. PVC isn’t recommended because it can contain hazardous or harmful ingredients. Aluminium is often safe, but it may react with acidic food products, such as tomatoes and fruits.