Food quality control is essential for the safety of the consumer and the environment. It ensures that only those products that meet quality norms and standards and have undergone appropriate safety inspections reach the shelves of stores and the tables of cafes and restaurants.
The quality of food products must be controlled from the production stage to the moment they reach the shelves of a store or the table of a catering establishment. What factors may determine the level of production, delivery, storage, processing, and sale of food products:
- Consumption for food and to be sold in the store, market, catering, etc.;
- Initial conformity of the quality of raw materials to be used for cooking;
- The use of semi-finished products with certificates of conformity;
- Well-established schemes of production technology;
- Perfection of the recipe;
- Carrying out technological processes without violations;
- High level of technical equipment;
- Availability of qualified responsible personnel;
- Correct organisation of customer service;
- Compliance of the production level with legal norms and established standards;
- Adherence to quality control rules at each stage of preparation, starting from checking the conformity of raw materials.
And, of course, the manufacturer (seller) himself must be interested in reaching a high level in the food industry. Today’s labor market is full of vacancies related to controlling the quality of goods at all stages of production. You can see it here – https://jooble.org/jobs-food-safety/Remote
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Procedures and methods
Control of food safety should be carried out at each production stage. For this purpose, there should be organized:
- service of input control – inspection of raw materials that come to production in the sphere of public catering;
- operational control service – control over the technological process (preparation); compliance with the recipe; sequence of preparation; the process of food processing (e.g., heat treatment); rules of presentation and serving of ready meals, etc.;
- acceptance control service – checking the quality and safety of already prepared dishes).
It is important to organize the entire safety inspection process as clearly as possible and to distribute duties and responsibilities among employees. There are several methods of controlling the safety and quality of products in catering organizations, which the consumer can buy in the store or in the catering (yes, in general, anywhere):
- Organoleptic – sensory evaluation of food (sight, touch, smell, taste, hearing);
- Microbiological – epidemiological safety testing and microbiological resistance (for the presence and quantity of certain bacteria, potentially pathogenic microorganisms, mesophilic aerobic organisms, etc., in compliance with the established norms);
- Physico-chemical – different types of value of food products (energy, nutritional, biological) are studied.
As you can understand from the information you have read, the process of controlling the quality and safety of food consumed by consumers is quite complex and time-consuming. Especially since each product has its own standards of conformity. It is not so easy to organise it, but it is very important.