Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) is now well established as a food safety
management system which is capable of maintaining high standards of food safety in the production and distribution of food. The primary objective of this project was to assess the effectiveness with which HACCP was being implemented and maintained
in food manufacturing plants across the island of Ireland.
In–depth audits of HACCP systems were carried out on–site at 44 food production companies across the island (equal representation from Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland). The majority (93%) of food manufacturing companies surveyed had HACCP systems in place that were rated average or good by the auditors. Some deficiencies were noted in the areas of hazard analysis, verification and maintenance. The audit team revisited six of the companies and there was evidence of significant improvement in these areas between visits. <P>It was concluded that shortage of technical expertise was a key factor contributing to the deficiencies observed.