Achieving a strong food safety culture takes effective leadership and commitment, and contributions and support from everyone in your business.
This document outlines some simple practices you can put in place to develop, shape and strengthen your business's food safety culture. Keys areas you may choose to improve are:
Real life stories from Australian companies
1. A food manufacturer
The problem: Food safety wasn’t a priority for senior management. After a few high-profile recalls, they realised something needed to change.
✔ food safety champions were introduced
✔ food safety was incorporated into strategic plans at all levels of the company
✔ general managers now participate in certification audits
✔ regular food safety talks are presented at managers’ meetings
✔ food safety is included in routine site meetings
✔ new technology is used to help respond to issues and incidents
✔ food safety reports are routinely given to the Board.
The company understands food safety is an investment in business, not a cost of doing business.
2. A catering company
The problem: Challenges of high staff turnover and keeping food safety front of mind.
"We've seen how strengthening the culture makes a real difference. When we focus on a particular region and run workshops and visit sites (as opposed to doing audits), we see an improvement in our audit outcomes. Unfortunately this improvement seems to drop away after about 12 months unless we follow up.
One of our biggest issues is the change of staff and we try and deal with this by having strong local inductions and training for all new staff.
Over the next year we plan to have '12 months of food safety' with a different topic each month. All our sites will be required to hold short (15-minute) food safety meetings every month and keep a record of who attends. We'll distribute posters and other tools to help staff with their discussions at these meetings."