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PRODUCE HANDLING AND PACKHOUSE PACKING

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Key – Those standards which have greater significance (all other standards are normal)

Recommendation – Those which do not affect certification

New – A completely new standard which the member must now adhere to

Revised – A standard that has changed and requires the member to take some different or additional action to before

Upgraded – The standard has been upgraded to a Key standard or from a Recommendation to a full standard

Appendix – Referenced in ‘How you will be measured’. Indicates that additional information is provided in the Appendices, which are available at the end of each section.

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Where to find help – at the end of each section we have indicated where you can get extra guidance if you need it.

Cropping Categories Fresh Produce

Category 0
Those you can eat raw and have a significant risk or history of pathogen contamination.

Category 1
Those you can eat raw and which do not have a protective skin that is removed before eating; they may also have a significant risk or history of pathogen contamination.

Category 2
Those you can eat raw and which either have protective skin or grow clear of the ground, or that have no history of pathogen contamination.

Category 3
Those that the customer always cooks.

An up-to-date list of the crop categories can be found on the Red Tractor website.

Aim:

PRODUCE HANDLING AND PACKHOUSE PACKING

PR.PH.a

Standards

Written staff hygiene policies and procedures must be in place, communicated to staff and compliance monitored

How you will be measured

(Revised October 2018)
ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • Hygiene policy includes:
  • staff to wash (with running water and non-perfumed soap) and dry hands before starting work and after using toilets
  • no jewellery with the exception of a plain wedding band or religious jewellery with no stones/ jewels
  • no watches
  • no rings or studs worn in exposed parts of the body
  • no eating, spitting or chewing in cropping areas
  • no smoking including e-cigarettes in packing and storage areas
  • banning personal phones in production areas has been considered (excludes supervisory staff and lone worker phones)
  • no excessive make-up, false nails, false eyelashes or hair extensions where they present a contamination risk to the product

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0, 1 & 2

  • Hygiene policy requires:
    • hands kept clean and no nail varnish
    • no perfume or aftershave
    • reporting of wounds and use of blue and/or metal-detectable (only where metal-detectors are used) plasters for skin cuts or wounds, the issue of which is controlled and recorded

(Revised October 2018)
ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • Staff Hygiene Policy
  • Plaster issue record

PR.PH.b

Standards

All staff handling fresh produce must be trained in personal hygiene requirements

How you will be measured

  • Training covering all requirements of PH.a and PH.h completed as part of the staff induction before starting work
  • Staff training record
  • Agency labour training records

PR.PH.c

Standards

All visitors that enter production areas must be made aware of the hygiene requirements

How you will be measured

ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • Hygiene policy in place for visitors/ contractors

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0, 1 & 2

  • Procedure in place to ensure all visitors/ contractors on site have been made aware of Hygiene Policy
  • Visitors/ contractors declare that they understand and will comply with the Hygiene Policy
  • Visitor/ contractor Hygiene Policy

PR.PH.d

Standards

Signs must be clearly displayed in the packing facilities whichdescribe the main hygiene instructions for workers and visitors

PR.PH.e

Standards

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) appropriate to the crop type being produced must be provided and maintained in good condition

How you will be measured

ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • PPE requirements are clearly defined by the business
  • PPE is clean and fit for purpose
  • PPE (with the exception of headgear) is not worn in the smoking area toilets or taken home

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0, 1 & 2

  • Where gloves are used, a glove use procedure is in place which includes:
    • Only intact and clean gloves are used
    • Glove storage
    • Staff to discard when torn or heavily soiled
    • Hand washing before and after gloves are put on

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0 & 1

  • System for managing the laundering of non-disposable overalls:
    • Laundered by an audited contracted facilitiy or
    • laundered in-house in a manner that minimises the risk of cross-contamination
  • Hair (including beard snoods if appropriate) is covered at all times

ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • PPE requirement policy

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0, 1 & 2

  • Glove use procedure

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0 & 1

  • Contract laundry audit report

PR.PH.f Key

Standards

Clean and maintained facilities that are accessible to all staff and enable them to ensure on appropriate degree of personal hygiene must be provided

How you will be measured

ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • For every 20 staff there is a minimum of one toilet provided
  • Toilets are not placed in close proximity to the packing and storage environment where there would be risk of contamination during cleaning or in case of a spill
  • Facilities:
    • provide non-perfumed soap, water, hand drying facilities (paper towels) and toilet paper
    • are rountinely checked to ensure soap, water and paper towel supplies are maintained
    • maintained in a clean and usable condition and toilet cleaing records kept
  • Water used in hand washing is potable and does not pose a risk of contamination

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0, 1 & 2

  • Hand sanitisers do not replace handwashing and have only been used after hands are washed
  • Staff Hygiene Policy
  • Toilet cleaning records

PR.PH.g

Standards

Signs must be clearly displayed which describe the requirements for hands to be washed after using toilets

PR.PH.h

Standards

Written procedures for reporting any infectious diseases must be in place and communicated to staff and visitors

How you will be measured

ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • Policy in place for all staff returning to work after Gastro Intestinal (GI) illnesses
  • Policy on GI and return to work is communicated to staff (via Hygiene Policy) and visitors/ contractors (PH.c – Visitor/ Contractor Hygiene Policy)

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 1 & 2

  • Formal recording of all incidences of GI illnesses in place and operating effectively
  • Supervisory/ management staff trained in assessing risk

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0

  • Formal recording of all incidences of GI illnesses is in place and operating effectively
  • At least one member of staff is formally trained in assessing staff return to work after GI illness
  • Staff are interviewed by their supervisor on returning to work to verify that the symptoms have ceased and the person is no longer a risk

ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • Visitor/ Contractor Hygiene Policy
  • Hygiene policy
  • Return to work policy

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS CAT 1 & 2

  • Visitor/ Contractor Hygiene Policy
  • Hygiene policy
  • Return to work policy

ADDITIONAL REQUREMENTS FOR CAT 0

  • Return to work assessments

PR.PH.i

Standards

Produce handling, loading, transporting, packing and storage facilities, including boxes, must be kept clean and routinely maintained to prevent product contamination

How you will be measured

ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • Cleaning schedules are in place that document how and when to clean all pieces of equipment
  • Graders and washing equipement and vehicles which are under the member's responsibility and are being used for loading and transport of product are maintained and inspected daily when in use
  • Floors are fit for purpose and gently sloped towards the drains
  • Drains are cleaned periodically to prevent biofilm build-up
  • Waste is disposed of at a frequency that discourages flies

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0, 1 & 2

  • Staff are trained in cleaning requirements
  • When not in use, cleaned containers are stored in a manner that prevents the risk of contamination (e.g. from pests, birds, dust, water, etc.)

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0 & 1

  • Floors are kept as dry as possible to minimise Listeria risk
  • Pooling of water is avoided

ALL CROP CATEGORIES AND ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS CAT 0, 1 & 2

  • Cleaning schedules
  • Cleaning records
  • Grader/ washing equipement/ vehicle maintenance records
  • Training records

PR.PH.i.1

Standards

Water used post-harvest for final product washing/ in direct contact with the product (including ice) must be deemed acceptable by the Water Matrix and Risk Assessment and is stored in a clean container

PR.PH.i.2

Standards

It is recommended that, based on the Risk Assessment, water analysis is completed by an ISO 17025 laboratory, test results are monitored and actions taken on poor results

  • Water testing results

PR.PH.j

Standards

Chemicals used must be authorised for food industry use and technical data sheets held and stored in a dedicated area

How you will be measured

ALL CROP CATEGORIES

  • Technical data sheets confirm chemicals are fit for purpose
  • Chemicals are stored in an appropriate secure area when not in immediate use

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CAT 0 & 1

  • Only specified and approved food-grade cleaning chemicals are used
  • Technical data sheets

PR.PH.k

Standards

Lubricants which may come into contact with product must be authorised for food industry use

PR.PH.l

Standards

Controls must be in place to protect product from contamination with any broken glass, hard plastic, wood or other foreign bodies

How you will be measured

  • Glass and hard plastics are protected in areas with open product
  • A Glass and Hard Plastic Policy/ Procedure is in place which:
    • lists all glass and hard plastics in the production area on a register
    • register is checked monthly for accuracy
    • where glass and hard plastics cannot be covered regualr checks (based on a frequency determined by the Risk Assessment) are made when in use to ensure there is no damage
    • sets out actions to be taken in the event of a glass breakage
  • Pre-production check sheets ensure all staff check thei lines at the start of shift for any damage that could introduce contamination into the product
  • Containers, crates and boxes are checked prior to filling
  • Damaged wooden crates, pallets or trays are repaired or disposed of
  • All staff are trained in how to deal with glass and hard plastic breakages and understand the Glass and Hard Plastic Policy/ Procedure
  • Glass and Hard Plastic Policy/ Procedure
  • Glass and hard plastic register
  • Glass and hard plastic check records
  • Training records

PR.PH.m

Standards

(Revised October 2018)Controls must be in place to prevent the risk of product contamination from knives and cutting blades, secateurs, maintenance tools, gloves and plasters

How you will be measured

  • Equipement is managed to ensure that it does not represent any risk of contamination to products through loss or damage
  • System to manage knives, blades and tools includes
    • controlled issue and collection at end of shifts
    • routine inspection of blades for damage
    • lost items investigated

PR.PH.n

Standards

It is recommended that forklifts and other driven equipment used within the packhouse are maintained to avoid product contamination, with special attention given to emissions

How you will be measured

  • Forklifts and other driven transport trolleys are electric or gas driven

PR.PH.n.1

Standards

Containers/ crates/ boxes used to store product must be dedicated for that purpose

How you will be measured

  • Product containers/ crates/ boxes are not used to store any chemicals, waste or other debris that could contaminate product

NB: Waste does not include waste product

PR.PH.n.2

Standards

Regular checks must be in place to ensure that buildings that product may enter, be handled in or stored in are free from foreign body risks

PR.PH.n.3

Standards

Microbiological testing of the end product must be used to monitor and verify the safety of the processes and the end product of Category 0 crops. Testing must be performed by an accredited laboratory (ISO. IEC 17025:2005)

How you will be measured

REQUIREMENT FOR CAT 0

  • Results are trended to determine effects of temperature, season, rainfall, etc.
  • Microbiological test results

PR.PH.o

Standards

Controls must be in place to ensure packaging is suitable for product, clean and free from contamination

How you will be measured

  • Packaging stored in a clean area, free from any contamination risks
  • Packaging checked before use

PR.PH.p

Standards

Controls must be in place to ensure that the correct packaging and coding is applied to all packed product

How you will be measured

  • No opportunity for the Red Tractor logo to be applied on non-assured product
  • When final packing takes place, product labelling is done in accordance to applicable food regulations in the country of intended sale and according to customer specifications
  • Products originating from certified operations are not labelled, marked or described in a manner which implies they meet specific food criteria
  • Documented controls for packaging

PR.PH.q

Standards

Equipment used for weighing or temperature control of product must be calibrated in line with equipment suppliers' recommendations

How you will be measured

  • Equipment is:
    • uniquely identified
    • routinely calibrated, either externally or internally
  • Calibration records

PR.PH.r

Standards

Cleaning agents and machinery lubricants must be stored in a secure area separate from product handling and storage areas

PR.PH.s

Standards

Controls must be in place to ensure that products are not contaminated with allergens

How you will be measured

  • Allergens on site have been identified as part of the Risk Assessment (including lubricants)
  • Preventative actions are in place which prevent products being contaminated with allergens
  • Staff are trained in the importance of the preventative actions and actions to be taken in the event of a failure

NB. An up-to-date list of allergens can be found on the FSA website –
https://www.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/top-allergy-types.pdf

  • Allergen risk assessment
  • Training records

PR.PH.t

Standards

Where preventative actions cannot guarantee a product is not contaminated with a known allergen on site the product is labelled

How you will be measured

  • Can demonstrate what products could be contaminated and they are labelled
  • Product labels