Environmental Monitoring for BRCGS: Hygiene and Housekeeping

Welcome to our Environmental Monitoring for BRC Global Standards for Food Safety (BRCGS) series. Download our free guide today.

When looking to set your limits of acceptable and unacceptable cleaning performance, BRCGS Clause 4.11.3 defines a number of ways to do this.

Once test points are established, area risks are assessed primarily on whether it needs to be a clean processing environment (where a ‘visually clean’ may be sufficient) or a sterile food contact surface (where all traces of allergen or other cross contaminants must be removed).

Further environmental monitoring (to comply with BRCGS Clause 4.11.8 Hygiene and Housekeeping: Environmental Monitoring) must include these aspects a minimum:

  • Sampling protocol
  • Identification of sample locations
  • Frequency of tests
  • Target organism(s) (e.g. pathogens, spoilage organisms and/or indicator organisms)
  • Test methods (e.g. settle plates, rapid testing and swabs)
  • Recording and evaluation of results.

More rigorous tests to assess the level of hygiene may be defined in several ways including ATP bioluminescence systems, microbiological indicator tests or allergen detection tests.

Using these types of environmental monitoring tests also allows you to verify or validate cleaning when managing a specific hazard (e.g. allergen cross-contamination).

Combining these different test methods allows you to build a robust environmental monitoring and hygiene management plan.

How Can We Help?

At Gem Scientific, we understand that environmental monitoring is a rigorous and multipronged methodology that requires diligent and well thought out management plans.

At Gem Scientific, we are continuing our commitment to providing the food and beverage production industry with high-quality and innovative testing products. We understand that every company has its own set of risks to manage and our aim is to provide a range of flexible tests and equipment to meet them.

Contact us today to discuss how we can help you work towards your environmental monitoring goals:

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