GMP stands for Good Manufacturing Practices, which are a set of guidelines designed to ensure the safety and hygiene of food production throughout the entire food chain. These guidelines establish requirements for management and handling actions, as well as the design and operation of establishments and processes related to food production.
Examples of GMP guidelines include the construction and layout of food premises, employee training, equipment maintenance, appropriate chemical use, effective pest control, waste identification and storage, implementation of traceability systems, and cleanliness of premises and equipment.
Regulations and standards
GMP has been developed by the Codex Alimentarius to protect consumers, and includes basic operational conditions and procedures that must be met by food companies. (Codex Alimentarius (europa.eu))
All EU countries are members of the Codex Alimentarius Commission. In 2003, the EU also joined, sharing competence with EU countries depending on the level of harmonisation of the respective legislation. Decision 2003/822/ECEN describes relevant working procedures and constitutes a legal basis for accession of the EU to Codex. The Directorate-General Health & Food Safety is the EU Codex contact point. And REGULATION (EC) No 852/2004 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 29 April 2004 on the hygiene of foodstuffs.
International Associates Limited also bases the audit on CAC/RCP 1-1969, General Principles of Food Hygiene. With respect to the HACCP elements of the process.
These General Principles lay a firm foundation for ensuring food hygiene and should be used in conjunction with each specific code of hygienic practice, where appropriate, and the guidelines on microbiological criteria. The document follows the food chain from primary production through to final consumption, highlighting the key hygiene controls at each stage. It recommends a HACCP-based approach wherever possible to enhance food safety as described in Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) System and Guidelines for its Application
In the UK The Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013 STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS 2013 No. 2996 FOOD, ENGLAND also apply.
Audits can be based on a one-off audit usually conducted annually
However International Associates have developed a Quality Management System QMS approach using a 3 year cycle of initial certification followed by 2 annual surveillance visits. This allows the verification of the system over the 3 years reducing the audit time and costs based on the internal controls by the company. (This approach is based on the ISO standard for GMP ISO 22716)