Contact tracing is assimilated to detective work, whereby health authorities conduct an investigation of who the person contracted the viruses from and whom that the person may have spread it to. They look into evidence such as an interview with the patient to identify the source and potential spread, tracing application on cellphone or external tracker and going over the close contact that the patient had. It is tough to do when you have asymptomatic COVID-19 carrier.
Let's look into food traceability. Similar to contact tracing, food traceability is a process to identify the materials flow from when it enters a food facility to when it passed onto another customer or distributor. Materials can be defined as food ingredients, food contact packaging materials, finished products etc. In a simple term, we like to know if we have a potentially contaminated material, we are able to identify the materials itself, processing line and equipment it was used, work in progress that contain the ingredients, rework (if applicable), the Quantity used/ shipped and the remaining Quantity in-house.
This blog is a guideline to apply for SFC license:
1. Determine if you need an SFC license
Determine if you need a license through the interactive licensing tools.
2. If you need an SFC license, you will need a My CFIA account. If you are creating a My CFIA account, the user guidelines are beneficial to navigate through the account creation.
3. Before your license application, you will need the following information
Let’s dive into some of the information above, as we have heard questions on how to determine the licensing scope and how many licenses you will need to apply?
Quick fact for SFC license-The benefit of applying for a single SFC license is that it save application time and cost. The disadvantages are if CFIA suspends or cancels the license, every single activity associated with the SFC license is also suspended.
To avoid the above, we usually recommend our client to apply for multiple SFC license, if the activities are different. Example, a local manufacturer that manufacture products for Canada and the US market will apply for two SFC license: one for manufacturing and distribution for the Canadian market and another: exporter SFC license.
Food Categories Determination:
With the number of food categories available for selection, it is hard to determine if you are applying for the right food category. We find these guidelines beneficial for identifying your products into the right food category as it defines what is in each category. Examples are also shown for each food category to give you an idea, what the category and sub-category cover for.
Documentation Requirement: Preventative Control Plan, Customer Protection Plan and Traceability
There are a few key activities that determine the type of documentation that you will need for the SFC license. We like to categorize them as manufacturing, export and import. Based on these critical activities, we help our clients develop the right set of preventative control plans that best suited for their business needs. You will find our blog on the development of the preventative control plan and customer protection plan helpful to get you started on the program.
4. When you gather all these documents, you are ready to attest that you have all the documentation, submit the application and pay for the license fees. It takes about one to two weeks for license issuance. While not all preventative control documents will be reviewed, it is important that you have the document available for CFIA to review when requested.
If you are looking for assistance to prepare for your SFC license application, we’d love to help. Simply book a meeting at https://calendly.com/felicialoo. Free quotation available for both consultation and developed programs and forms template to get you started. Let us help you with your SFC license application and meet the SFCR application deadline.
Being employed as a freelance food safety consultant has given Felicia Loo the opportunity to immerse herself in a variety of disciplines, which is one of the reasons she embraces change and continuous learning. “I enjoy the flexibility and diversity with the work that I do with my clients,” she says. “My projects vary—from food safety program development, implementation, training, and internal audit to project management.”
A graduate of the University of British Columbia with a BSc in food science, Loo is currently pursuing a post-graduate certificate in quality management at the Memorial University of Newfoundland. She has been a part of IFT since 2011, when she was a student. Since then, she has served in multiple capacities and is currently the chair for the British Columbia Section. “Through volunteering with IFT, we build trust, common purposes, and a sense of community,” she says. “The connection, ideas exchange[d], and the time that we spend together build an ever-lasting bridge for a global food science community.”
Along with the connections she has forged through IFT, Loo’s work experiences and the opportunities they have brought “have allowed me to learn about myself and also have the freedom to help those who need food safety guidance the most,” she reflects. Looking ahead, this experience will undoubtedly help her assist her clients with the many changes taking place.
Food wastage has gone up around the world due to COVID-19, as food cannot go through the supply chain soon enough to reach consumers,” she says. “We are seeing consumers starting to shift from foodservice to home-cooked food, and gaining some cooking skills there. Food businesses, regardless of size, have adapted to the ‘essential’ situation at the moment, and there is no evidence whether or not this is temporary or permanent. The overlapping uncertainties make it harder for food companies and the supply chain in general to forecast—or should I say, our forecast is a high-stakes bet that the trend that we see will continue or discontinue.”
Other issues wrought by the pandemic, observes Loo, are a slowing of the regulatory and third-party certification audit process, which is “leaving the food industries to self-regulate,” she says. “I think we will see both challenges and opportunities in the self-regulation situation, especially when the current focus for many food businesses is to survive ….”
In the midst of a global pandemic, the connections we make with others are more important than ever, which is why Loo finds IFT’s core value of Community so fitting. “Food scientists play multiple roles in advancing our food science knowledge, bridging the gap between science and consumers while supporting the food industries,” she says. “It is essential to acknowledge that all of us are doing essential services in building our communities.”
Article originally published at https://www.ift.org/news-and-publications/food-technology-magazine/issues/2020/june/departments/ift-congratulates-50-year-members-getting-to-know-felicia-loo
Felicia Loo, CFS is a Certified Food Scientist and qualified SQF Practitioner. She has worked with numerous food businesses to develop customized and improved food safety programs. She has worked with different food safety and regulatory schemes such as SQF, ISO 22000, Primus GFS, Organic, Kosher and Health Canada (Natural Health Product).