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Food Sector Recall Plan – The What, Why & How

Food Sector Recall Plan – The what, Why & how


A recall policy refers to a set of procedures and guidelines that a company follows when a product they have produced and distributed poses a potential health or safety risk to consumers. The primary goal of a recall policy is to quickly and effectively remove the affected products from the market and notify consumers about the potential risks associated with the product. This helps to prevent any potential harm to consumers and maintain the company’s reputation for quality and safety.

The specific details of a recall policy can vary based on the company’s size, industry regulations, and the nature of the product they produce.

general steps and considerations that are typically part of a recall policy in the food business:

  1. Identify and assess the  potential issues with a product’s safety or quality. This could be due to contamination, labeling errors, undeclared allergens, or other factors.
  2. Investigate the root cause of the issue to understand how it occurred and how widespread it might be.
  3. Isolate and quarantine the affected products to prevent them from being further distributed or consumed.
  4. Depending on local regulations, the company may need to inform relevant government agencies about the issue and the planned recall.
  5. Inform distributors, retailers, and other partners about the recall and provide them with guidance on how to handle the affected products.
  6. Notify consumers through various channels, such as press releases, social media, the company’s website, and direct communication (e.g., email or phone calls). Provide clear information about the reason for the recall, the potential risks, and what consumers should do with the affected products.
  7. Develop a plan for consumers to return or dispose of the affected products safely. This could involve providing refunds or exchanges.
  8. Investigate how the issue occurred and take corrective actions to prevent similar incidents in the future. This might involve refining manufacturing processes, improving quality control measures, or reassessing suppliers.
  9. Maintain thorough records of the entire recall process, including the initial identification of the issue, communication efforts, product retrieval, and any corrective actions taken.
  10. After the recall is completed, conduct a review of the entire process to identify areas for improvement and to ensure that lessons are learned from the incident.


It is important to note that effectiveness of Recall procedure depends on different factors as the company Quality Control readiness , Its communication effectiveness and efficiency and its strict adherence to Public safety

Product recall procedure is a mandatory Action in all Food safety management Systems as HACCP ( Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point ) , ISO 22000 FSMS Food Safety management system , BRC , .. etc.

Consultant for ISO Certification Saudi Arabia



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