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On-farm food safety manuals updated for 2012


February 14, 2012
By Press release

Topics

February 13, 2012, Ottawa, Ont – The Canadian
Horticultural Council (CHC)’s CanadaGAP On-Farm Food Safety (OFFS) manuals have
been updated for 2012.

February 13, 2012, Ottawa, Ont – The Canadian
Horticultural Council (CHC)’s
CanadaGAP On-Farm Food Safety (OFFS) manuals have
been updated for 2012.

The
revised OFFS manuals have been reviewed and the changes approved by Canadian
Food Inspection Agency
. The documents are available as a free download on the
CanadaGAP website at www.canadagap.ca.

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Documents
summarizing commodity-specific differences and changes made from previous
versions of the manuals are available at
www.canadagap.ca/en/manuals/offs-manualdownloads.aspx.

Five
commodity-specific manuals (used by operations producing, packing and storing
field, orchard and vineyard-grown crops) have been consolidated into one
manual, called the Fruit and Vegetable OFFS manual. The Greenhouse OFFS manual
continues to be a standalone module.

This
change was made to consolidate the program materials and facilitate
implementation of the manuals by the many companies that grow, pack or store
multiple commodities within their operations. Merging the manuals also ensures
ongoing alignment of requirements that are common to all crop groupings. Where
differences exist, commodity-specific requirements are clearly outlined.

“At least
90 per cent of the program requirements are the same across all crop groupings,
so amalgamation of the manuals has been a natural progression and long-time
goal of the CanadaGAP (CHC
OFFS) program and its users,” said CanadaGAP national program manager Heather
Gale. 

“The
hazard analyses remain commodity-specific, which ensures that any issues or
scientific developments affecting an individual commodity will continue to be
addressed with the appropriate technical rigour,” added CanadaGAP technical
manager Amber Bailey.

In
general, requirements for all crop groupings remain largely unchanged for 2012,
except where additions were needed to meet new requirements of the Global Food
Safety Initiative (GFSI)
, to which CanadaGAP is benchmarked. Otherwise the
majority of revisions to the manuals are editorial in nature, to clarify or
further explain existing requirements.

For
certification purposes, the new manuals take effect on April 1, 2012. A corresponding
update to the CanadaGAP audit checklist will be issued prior to that effective
date.


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