ISO 22000, the food safety management system standard, is being updated. The ISO 22000 revision joins other ISO management system standards currently at various stages of the revision process, including, most notably, ISO 9001 (quality) and ISO 14001 (environment). The first meeting of the ISO 22000 revision working group, ISO/TC 34/SC 17/WG 8, was hosted by the National Standards Authority of Ireland in late February.
ISO standards are reviewed (at least) every five years to determine whether they need to be updated. After the initial release of ISO 22000 in 2005, the standard was reviewed without revision in 2009. Consultation last year (the fifth-year review after 2009) among users of the standard and other stakeholders showed a number of gaps in the existing version, and it was determined that an ISO 22000 revision was needed.
ISO 22000 revision goals
Based on the response last year, the ISO 22000 revision working group specifically aims to address the following in the update:
- Clarify certain key concepts, especially critical control points required to be managed, operational programs needed, approach to risks, product withdrawal and recall, and a combination of external control measures
- Update terms and definitions
- Make the standard simpler and more concise
- Avoid making the content too prescriptive
- Ensure a greater coverage of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
Like the other ISO standards being updated, the ISO 22000 revision will follow the format of Annex SL, incorporating the texts, terms, and definitions. The ISO 22000 revision working group will seek input and feedback from diverse stakeholders, including industry experts, food producers, SMEs, manufacturers, and even those in related fields, such as water and pet food.
The ISO 22000 revision working group will meet in October of this year to deliver a working draft, which will mark the beginning of a formal six-step process in the ISO 22000 revision. The culmination of the six-step process will be the revised international standard, which is anticipated to reach final approval and publication in 2017.
For more information, visit iso.org.