General requirements to be considered for each prerequisite

This is a list of requirements to be considered for each prerequisite. Please note the requirements stated are brief and are only to be used as a guide. There are many other factors that will need to be taken into consideration to ensure you have total control of a prerequisite.

Further information can be obtained from ISO22000, ISO22002-1, BRC Version 7, BRC Best Practice Guidelines (e.g. Pest Control, Internal audit), Codex Alimentarius General Principles of Food Hygiene.

List of requirements to be considered for each prerequisite

Location of food establishments

An assessment of the impact of neighbouring businesses on the food operation should be undertaken and in particular of potential sources of contamination. This is particularly important where there are shared facilities such as toilets, goods yards and canteens.

Layout and design of food premises

In particular, areas of potential cross contamination between raw and ready to eat food should be identified and eliminated through appropriate design of the premises layout. For example, wherever possible, raw foods should be handled in separate rooms to ready to eat foods. Where this is not possible, separate defined areas within the same room should be identified and only when this is not possible should consideration be given to management controls to control the hazard.

Structure and condition of food premises

Structures within food establishments should be soundly built of durable materials and be easy to maintain, clean and where appropriate, able to be disinfected.

Food allergen control

Regard should be had to the 14 food allergens listed in Annex II of Regulation (EU) 1169/2011. Wherever possible product formulation should avoid the inclusion of these allergens, food ingredients containing these allergens should be carefully controlled and other, non-allergenic foods should be protected from cross-contamination.

Temperature control

Depending on the nature of the food operations undertaken, adequate facilities should be available for heating, cooling, cooking, refrigerating and freezing food, for storing refrigerated or frozen foods, monitoring food temperatures, and when necessary, controlling ambient temperatures to ensure the safety and suitability of food.

Waste control

Suitable provision must be made for the removal and storage of waste. Waste must not be allowed to accumulate in food handling, food storage, and other working areas and the adjoining environment except so far as is unavoidable for the proper functioning of the business.

Supplier control

Ingredients and supplies should, wherever possible, be purchased to specification from reputable suppliers. Supplies of products of animal origin such as meat, fish, dairy products etc should normally only be sourced from establishments which have been approved by the relevant food authority and bear the appropriate health (for fresh meat carcasses) or identification marking (for other types of product of animal origin).


Packaging should be fit for purpose, storage of packaging should be considered to lower the risk of contamination and deterioration.

Incoming material specifications

Specifications for all raw materials (including packaging) or services which could affect the finished product should be in place and functional.

Finished product specifications

Specifications should in place and functional for all finished products.


Food handlers should be supervised and instructed and/or trained in food hygiene matters commensurate with their work activity. Those responsible for the development and maintenance of HACCP should have received adequate training in the application of the HACCP principles.

Contract services (such as waste removal or laundry)

Systems should be in place to make sure that any contract services used meet the requirements of your business. Consideration should be given to prevent contamination of products or production areas.

Pest Control

Adequate procedures should be in place to prevent pest access to premises and harbourage. In particular steps should be taken to prevent the contamination of food by pests.

Glass and plastic management

If possible glass or other brittle materials should be kept out of premises or work areas. Where they are present action should be taken to protect against breakage with greater emphasis in areas where there is a higher risk to contamination of the product.


Any equipment used for measuring and monitoring must be sufficiently accurate and reliable to provide confidence in results.

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

The company should operate to documented procedures and/or work instructions that ensure the production of consistently safe and legal product with the desired quality characteristics, in full compliance with the HACCP food safety plan.


Vehicles and containers used to transport products should not present a risk to the safety or quality of the products.

Product recall

Effective procedures should be in place to deal with any food safety hazard and to enable the complete, rapid recall of any implicated lot of the finished food from the market. Where unsafe food has left the initial control of the business, the Food Standards Agency or the relevant local authority should be notified.

Document control

A system should be in place to ensure that only the most recent versions of documents and forms are available and in use.

Audit schedule (including HACCP/internal audits)

You should be able to demonstrate that you verify the effective application of the food safety plan.

Customer complaints

Customer complaints should be effectively addressed and analysed. Information gathered should be used to target issues which led to the complaint with the intention to reduce recurring problems.

Tracking non-conformances

Procedures should specify the necessary action to identify and eliminate the root cause of nonconformities. All corrections should be recorded - this information is required for traceability purposes.

Microbiological control

Inspection and analyses which are essential to confirm product safety, legality and quality should be carried out using appropriate procedures, facilities and standards.

Preventative maintenance

An effective maintenance programme should be in place for plant and equipment. Activities performed should prevent contamination and reduce the potential for breakdowns.


Systems should be such that all raw material product lots (including packaging) can be traced from the supplier through all stages of processing and despatch to the customer and the reverse (i.e. traceability from the customer back to the suppliers of the raw materials).

Utilities (air, water, energy)

Distribution routes for utilities should be designed to minimise the risk of contamination.

Equipment suitability, cleaning and maintenance

Equipment and containers coming into contact with food should be designed and constructed to ensure that, where necessary, they can be adequately cleaned, disinfected and maintained to avoid the contamination of food.

Measures to prevent cross-contamination

There should be systems in place to prevent, control and detect contamination (such as physical, chemical, allergen and microbiological contamination).

Cleaning and disinfection

Adequate facilities, suitably designated, should be provided for cleaning food, utensils and equipment. Such facilities should have an adequate supply of hot and cold potable water where appropriate. Where necessary, suitable disinfection procedures should be developed and implemented.

Personnel hygiene and employee facilities

Good hygiene practices are important. Staff should understand the risk of cross contamination to the food products and take appropriate actions to minimise this risk. All personnel, visitors and contractors should comply with any personal hygiene requirements.


It is important that when reworking product it is used, stored and handled in a way that it doesn’t compromise product safety, quality, traceability and regulatory compliance.


Storage facilities for raw materials (including packaging), in-process product, and finished products should be fit for purpose and not pose any contamination risk.

Product information/consumer awareness

Information shall be presented to consumers in accordance with the Food Information Regulations.

Food defence including biovigilance and bioterrorism

The hazard to products posed by potential acts of sabotage, vandalism or terrorism should be assessed, and where necessary measures should be put in place to minimise this risk.

Contamination control

Appropriate facilities and procedures shall be in place to control the risk of contamination from hazards (chemical, biological, physical and allergens).

Return to work

Action should be taken to minimise the risk of product becoming contaminated by personnel when returning to work.