April 17, 2015

17/04/2015: Chain approach in feed safety control is crucial

Dik Wolters, Project Manager, GMP+ International

First published in Milling and Grain, March 2015

A crucial lesson we have learnt from the past is that a safe feed can only be produced and delivered to a farmer when the whole feed supply chain is involved in feed safety assurance. 

GMP+ Feed Safety Assurance started in The Netherlands in 1992. At that moment, the scope of the scheme only covered the production and delivery to farmers of compound feed and single feed. Practical experiences showed us that, although these companies controlled all their processes, feed was still contaminated: the source of contamination was often related to feed ingredients, supplied via the supply chain. 

The Dutch feed industry imported about 75 percent of the feed ingredients from other part of the world, from Europe as well as Asia and North and South America. These feed ingredients are shipped in large volumes to North-West Europe. In case a feed ingredient from a certain origin was contaminated with an undesirable substance, a huge volume of contaminated ingredient arrived at country of destination. 

Two examples are given to illustrate previous experiences. The first one is about contamination of Brazilian citrus pulp (by-product of citrus fruit processing industry) with dioxin in 1998. Triggered by detected increased level of dioxin in raw milk, it was found that about 150,000 tons of contaminated citrus pulp from Brazil was distributed in Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium and North France. 

A more recent experience in Chile is about cadmium contamination of copper sulphate in 2008. In export destinations of pork, produced in Chile, increased levels of cadmium were detected. The source was contaminated copper sulphate used in pig feeds. 

Due to these kinds of experiences, the scope of the GMP+ Feed Certification scheme was extended to involve the whole feed supply chain. From 2000 onwards, also producers of feed ingredients, traders, storage and transport companies can participate in the GMP+ FC scheme. Special standards were published, created together with the industry; with conditions for implementing and operating a proper feed safety management system.


Assuring the feed safety in whatever phase or stage in the feed chain is build on the same principles, laid down in a similar way in all these standards: a sound prerequisite programme, a detailed and exhaustive hazard plan, and a supporting management system. These three pillars are the bases of a complete management system for assuring the feed safety. Specific requirements for suppliers are meant to create a feed supply chain where all involved companies assure the safety of the feed in all stages of production and distribution. With a GMP+ certificate, they can demonstrate they meet the highest standards for feed safety. 

It is crucial that risks are controlled, where they might occur during production, storage and transport. Every entrepreneur in the feed chain must show responsibility for the safety of the feed, placed on the market, and implement proper measures to control these risks. This will avoid, or in case of failure of the control measures for any reason whatsoever, reduce distribution of contaminated feed ingredients lots. 

Three related requirements were also introduced at the same time: (a) proper traceability system, (b) the duty to inform customers in case of contaminated deliveries and (c) the duty to recall of delivered lots of contaminated feed products. On top of this set of instruments, we introduced an early warning system (EWS). That means that, in case of a feed contamination, GMP+ International informs all certified companies, respecting confidentiality aspects: the level of the detected contaminant, the name of the feed product involved and the country of origin. This alert enables other companies to take actions and control measures in case they are sourcing the concerned product from the same origin. 

The international coverage of GMP+ Feed Safety Assurance with over 13,400 certified companies in 65 countries enables to act properly. This is in the interest of all links in the feed chain, and also of farm animal and aqua feed producers and the following livestock and aqua production links.

Read the magazine HERE.

The Global Miller
This blog is maintained by The Global Miller staff and is supported by the magazine GFMT
which is published by Perendale Publishers Limited.

For additional daily news from milling around the world: global-milling.com

No comments:

Post a Comment

See our data and privacy policy Click here