FSSC Certification for Packaging

What is FSSC Certification for Packaging? Benefits of FSSC 22000 Certification

FSSC 22000 certification is a globally recognized standard that addresses food safety and quality for the food and feed packaging manufacturing sector. This article delves into the specifics of FSSC certification for packaging, its scope, benefits, certification process, and a comparison with BRC certification.

What Is FSSC Certification for Packaging?

FSSC 22000 (Food Safety System Certification) is an international standard for food safety management systems, recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI). FSSC 22000 certification for packaging specifically targets manufacturers of food and feed packaging materials, ensuring that they adhere to stringent food safety and quality management practices.

What Is FSSC Certification for Packaging?

Scope of FSSC 22000

FSSC 22000 encompasses a broad range of requirements to ensure comprehensive food safety management. The scope includes:

  • Food Safety Management System (FSMS): Based on ISO 22000 standards, ensuring that all food safety hazards are identified and controlled.
  • Prerequisite Programs (PRPs): According to ISO/TS 22002-4 for food packaging manufacturing, ensuring hygiene and safety in the production environment.
  • Additional FSSC Requirements: Including specifications for management of services, product labeling, and food defense to protect against intentional contamination.

Who Is Required to Comply With FSSC 22000?

FSSC 22000 applies to a wide range of organizations that manufacture or process products within the following categories:

Category

Description

A

Farming fish and seafood/raising animals for meat, egg, or honey production. 

C

  1. Products like meat, eggs, dairy, and fish.
  2. Fresh fruits, juices, nuts, grains, and pulses.
  3. Mixed plant and animal products like dumplings, ready-to-eat meals, sandwiches, lasagna, and pizza.
  4. Food products stored at room temperature, like drinking water, snacks, sugar, pasta, flour, bread, canned foods, and more.

D

Producing the following animal and pet food items: 

  • Feed from a single or mixed food source (for non-food and food-producing animals).
  • Pet food for other pets.

E

Providing catering services to consumers, such as restaurants, hotels, cafeterias, canteens, coffee shops, event catering, and food trucks.

F

Providing retail/wholesale goods for consumption.

G

Providing transport and storage services for perishable food/feed and ambient stable food/feed and packaging materials.

I

Producing food packaging materials. 

K

Producing biochemicals like vitamins, minerals, enzymes, bio-cultures, processing aids, flavorings, and food/feed additives.

Benefits of FSSC 22000 Certification to the Food and Feed Packaging Manufacturing Sector

FSSC 22000 certification offers numerous benefits for packaging manufacturers:

  • Enhanced Food Safety: Ensures that packaging materials are produced under stringent safety standards, reducing the risk of contamination.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Helps businesses comply with international food safety regulations and standards.
  • Market Access: Recognized globally, it opens doors to new markets and strengthens relationships with major food producers and retailers.
  • Brand Reputation: Demonstrates commitment to food safety and quality, enhancing brand reputation and consumer trust.
  • Operational Efficiency: Improves internal processes through systematic hazard analysis and control, leading to more efficient operations.
Benefits of FSSC 22000 Certification

Certification Process

The certification process for FSSC 22000 involves several key steps:

  1. Preparation: Organizations must implement the necessary food safety management systems and prerequisite programs in line with FSSC 22000 requirements.
  2. Application: Submit an application to an accredited certification body.
  3. Initial Audit: Consists of two stages. Stage 1 assesses documentation and preparedness, while Stage 2 involves an on-site audit to evaluate implementation and compliance.
  4. Certification Decision: Based on the audit findings, the certification body decides whether to grant certification.
  5. Surveillance Audits: Conducted annually to ensure ongoing compliance with FSSC 22000 standards.
  6. Recertification: Every three years, a comprehensive audit is conducted for recertification.

Which is Better: ISO or FSSC?

Difference Between ISO 2200 And FSSC Certification For Packaging

Parameters

ISO 22000

FSSC 22000

Scope and applicability

A generic food safety management standard, applies to all organizations in the food chain, regardless of size or sector.

A sector-specific scheme based on ISO 22000, tailored specifically as a guide for food manufacturers and processors.

Additional Requirements

No additional requirements are explicitly covered in ISO 22000.

Includes additional requirements, such as food defense, food fraud prevention, and allergen management

Certification Bodies

Can be certified by any accredited certification body.

Certification is only granted by certification bodies approved by the Foundation for Food Safety Certification

Recognition by GFSI

ISO 22000 is not automatically GFSI recognized but can be used to achieve GFSI recognition.

Recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative, sets global food safety standards benchmarks.

Sector-specific modules

Generic standard without specific industry modules.

Offers sector-specific modules that address the unique requirements of different food industry segments.

Ultimately, the decision between BRC and FSSC 22000 should be based on the specific requirements of the markets served and the operational preferences of the organization.

Should Choose ISO 22000 or FSSC 22000?

Choosing ISO 22000 or FSSC 22000 will depend on some factors including the specific needs and requirements of the organization: 

  • Scope and Industry: FSSC 22000 is more suitable for organizations involved solely in food manufacturing or processing. ISO 22000 is a great option for those with a broader range along the food chain. 
  • Additional Requirements: FSSC Certification for Packaging might be the preferred choice for  an organization requires specific other requirements, such as food defense and food fraud prevention.
  • Recognition and Market Access: FSSC 22000 is beneficial for organizations seeking recognition by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) or access to specific markets. 
  • Certification Body: One of the factors might influence the choice between the two standards is the availability of certification bodies approved by the Foundation for Food Safety Certification.

Conclusion

FSSC 22000 certification for packaging is a critical tool for ensuring the safety and quality of food and feed packaging materials. It provides a structured framework for managing food safety risks, enhancing operational efficiency, and gaining market access. By choosing FSSC 22000, packaging manufacturers can demonstrate their commitment to food safety and quality, ensuring they meet the stringent demands of the global food industry. Whether opting for FSSC 22000 or BRC certification, both offer valuable benefits and can significantly contribute to the reputation and success of a packaging business.

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