Managing Food Safety: A Manual for the Voluntary Use of HACCP Principles for Operators of Food Service and Retail Establishments

Also available in PDF (624KB)

April 2006

Effective in 2008, additional copies are available from:
Office of Food Safety
Retail Food and Cooperative Programs Coordination Staff/Retail Food Protection Team (HFS-320)
Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition
Food and Drug Administration
5100 Paint Branch Parkway
College Park, MD 20740
(Tel) 240-402-2349

OMB Control No. 0910-0578
Expiration Date: 01/31/2013
See additional PRA statement in Annex 5 of this manual


FDA endorses the voluntary implementation of food safety management systems in retail and food service establishments. Combined with good basic sanitation, a solid employee training program, and other prerequisite programs, HACCP can provide you and your employees a complete food safety management system.

The goal in applying HACCP principles in retail and food service is to have you, the operator, take purposeful actions to ensure safe food. You and your regulatory authority have a common objective in mind - providing safe, quality food to consumers. Your health inspector can help you achieve this common objective, but remember that the ultimate responsibility for food safety at the retail level lies with you and your ability to develop and maintain an effective food safety management system.

Managing food safety should be as fully integrated into your operation as those actions that you might take to open in the morning, ensure a profit, or manage cash flow. By putting in place an active, ongoing system, made up of actions intended to create the desired outcome, you can achieve your goal of improving food safety. The application of the HACCP principles provides one system that can help you accomplish that goal.

This Manual will provide details on how to organize your products so that you can voluntarily develop your own food safety management system using HACCP principles. The HACCP plans that you will develop using this Manual, in combination with prerequisite programs (discussed in Chapter 3), will constitute a complete food safety management system. Partnering with your regulatory authority or other food safety professional is recommended, but the design, implementation, and success of your system rests with you.

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