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Appendix I: Definition of terms

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Appendix I: Definition of terms


· Based on Codex Alimentarius: HACCP System and Guidelines for its Application; Annex to CAC/RCP-1 (1969), Rev.3 (1997)

Control (verb): To take all necessary actions to ensure and maintain compliance with criteria established in the HACCP plan.

Control (noun): The state wherein correct procedures are being followed and criteria are being met.

Control measure: Any action and activity that can be used to prevent or eliminate a food safety hazard or reduce it to an acceptable level.

Corrective action: Any action to be taken when the results of monitoring at the CCP indicate a loss of control.

Critical Control Point (CCP): A step at which control can be applied and is essential to prevent or eliminate a food safety hazard or reduce it to an acceptable level.

Critical limit: A criterion which separates acceptability from unacceptability, when monitoring a critical control point.

Deviation: Failure to meet a critical limit.

Flow diagram: A systematic representation of the sequence of steps or operations used in the production or manufacture of a particular food item.

HACCP: A system that identifies, evaluates, and controls hazards which are significant for food safety.

HACCP plan: A document prepared in accordance with the principles of HACCP to ensure control of hazards which are significant for food safety in the segment of the food chain under consideration.

Hazard: A biological, chemical or physical agent in, or condition of, food with the potential to cause an adverse health effect.

Hazard analysis: The process of collecting and evaluating information on hazards and conditions leading to their presence to decide which are significant for food safety and therefore should be addressed in the HACCP plan.

Monitor: The act of conducting a planned sequence of observations or measurements of control parameters to assess whether a CCP is under control.

Step: A point, procedure, operation or stage in the food chain including raw materials, from primary production to final consumption.

Validation: Obtaining evidence that the elements of the HACCP plan are effective.

Verification: The application of methods, procedures, tests and other evaluations, in addition to monitoring to determine compliance with the HACCP plan.

· Additional definitions to consider.

Acceptable level: The level of a safety hazard which is considered to present an acceptable, low risk to the consumer. The acceptable level of the final product, sometimes referred to as a target level, should be stated in the product description and would normally be set at, or below, any regulatory limits. An acceptable level for a hazard at an intermediate step in the commodity flow diagram can be set higher than that of the final product, provided that the acceptable level in the final product will be achieved.

Commodity system: The complete system, including: all pre- and post- harvest activities such as growing, harvesting, drying, storage, processing, marketing, and preparation for home consumption.

Commodity flow diagram: A flow diagram which details and numbers each step in the commodity system.

Decision tree: A series of questions linked diagrammatically to be answered with Yes or No. The answers determine which path is followed and which decision this leads to.

Primary trader: The first trader in the marketing chain who typically buys small quantities of commodity direct from farmers and accumulates these for dispatch to a secondary trader. The primary trader will often carry out partial drying and temporary storage.

Product disposition: How the product is to be utilised. If a deviation occurs at a CCP, then part of the corrective action will be to amend the product disposition.

Real hazard: A hazard which has been identified as having a significant risk of being present.

Risk: May take a value from zero to one depending on the degree of certainty that the hazard will be absent or that it will be present

Safe moisture content: the moisture content at or below which toxigenic moulds cannot grow. Relates to a minimum water activity for mould growth and toxin production.

Secondary trader: A trader who typically buys commodity from a primary trader and (further) dries and stores it.

Target level: The acceptable level of a hazard in the final product, such as the regulatory level of mycotoxin in a product description.


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