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Choosing the Right Food Safety Consultant

Why partner with a food safety consultant?  The food and dietary supplement manufacturing industries are in high demand. Consumers rely on these operations for their critical necessities and trust these products are manufactured under appropriate controls and conditions. Achieving and maintaining full compliance can be a challenge, which is why many companies seek guidance from food safety consultants to safeguard their organization and customers.

When it comes time to find a consultant for your business, how do you choose the right one? Advisors across the globe vary in background and area of expertise, making the vetting process potentially overwhelming. The key is to find the right individual or firm that aligns with your company’s objectives.  Here are some of the top qualities to look for when selecting a food safety consultant:

Relevant Qualifications

For starters, it’s recommended that your chosen consultant carry a degree in food microbiology, food technology, food science or environmental health. Experience in food auditing is also highly recommended to ensure you’re prepped to pass any potential federal, state, or 3rd party audits of your facility.

A Proven History

A wealth of experience and history of satisfied clients are important factors when determining whether a consultant is right for your business. Inquire as to the duration of their work history in industries like yours, their level of experience implementing and maintaining food safety and quality systems, and if previous clients achieved the same certifications or standards that you are seeking.

Having a specific knowledge of equipment and technical operations may not be required, but your consultant’s expertise and specific approach should complement the company culture and nature of your business.

A Modern Approach

An effective food safety consultant will stay apprised of trends and challenges affecting the food and dietary supplement industries.   Consistent professional development in the realms of food safety, quality systems and legal compliance should be evident in the consultant’s CV(Curriculum Vitae), along with a demonstrated ability to achieve results and complete projects.

Thorough Expertise & Implementation Time

Most food safety consultants have a working knowledge of HACCP, Codex principles, the US Code of Federal Regulations, FSMA, Food safety plans and GFSI. Make sure to select an individual or consulting team that aligns with your goals as an operator.  For example, if you are seeking cGMP or ISO certification for your facility, ensure your food safety consultant has the associated relevant experience and education to accomplish this.

Steer clear of individuals or firms promising fast program development with short turnaround times.  Each operation is unique, which is why Avert FSA performs a thorough gap analysis to determine a detailed project scope and timeline.

Go Virtual?

In the past, projects would typically start with a site visit and gap audit before the project path is formulated.  With today’s virtual communication tools, many projects can be accomplished without the on-site audit or potential travel fees.  Training, program implementation, and inspections can also be web-based and facilitated from anywhere on the globe.  Ask your consultant about their capability and options for web-based, virtual consultation and training.

Why Avert Stands Out

With over 20 years of expertise assisting the food and dietary supplement industries, Avert FSA is your one-stop shop for food safety training, program development, and inspection needs.  We view our clients as partners and take pride in our proven track-record of satisfied customers.  To further support you, our consultants remain available long after the 3rd party audit or regulatory inspection to keep your operation on track and continually enhance your program.

Whether you’re starting a new food safety program or bringing freshness to your existing one, our team is ready to handle all your food safety needs.

Click here to learn more about how Avert FSA can help grow and protect your organization.

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Matthew McClure provides sound strategies that instill cost-effective methods for building robust food safety, operational and quality assurance programs. Along with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Microbiology from The University of Akron and an MBA in Finance from Louisiana State University, Matthew brings over 20 years of experience in the food safety industry to AVERT Food Safety Advisors. His knowledge spans many areas including FDA food processing facilities, USDA meat and poultry plants, dietary supplement manufacturers, retail, cannabis manufacturing, and food service operations.

Contact us for more information:

info@avertfoodsafety.com | Tel: +1 702.706.6574

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