ISO 22000

Understanding the changes to the food safety management systems standard

ISO 22000:2018 Food safety management systems

Used by organizations across the food chain to help deliver food that’s safe to eat to consumers, ISO 22000:2018 is an excellent framework to help implement a food safety management system (FSMS).
How food is grown, transported, manufactured and even consumed has changed significantly since the original standard was published over a decade ago. The new standard considers these changes and aims to help organizations reduce food safety hazards.


The key changes to the standard include:


  • A stronger emphasis on the responsibility of leadership
  • Applies a risk-based approach to the development of the FSMS
  • Clarification of key concepts including:
  • The Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle, by having two separate cycles in the standard working together with one covering the management system and the other covering the principles of HACCP
  • The differentiation of key terms including critical control points (CCPs), operational prerequisite programmes (ORPs) and prerequisite programmes (PRPs)
  • Improved compatibility with other ISO management system standards through the realignment of the content of the standard to the high level structure
Certificazione ISO 22000

Process and risk-based thinking

In addition to making ISO 22000 and the resulting FSMS easier to integrate with other ISO management systems, the new version of the standard also introduces the Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) cycle and risk-based thinking. By combining PDCA and risk-based thinking to manage business risk with HACCP to identify, prevent and control food safety hazards, ISO 22000 helps organizations to reduce exposure to risk and improve safety.

This combines both organizational and operational risk management into one management system. Organizationally, this approach provides the opportunity to consider all the different things that might impact your company, both good and bad. This allows you to prioritize the objectives of your FSMS so that it is implemented in a way that can accommodate the effects of these risks. On the operational side, risk-based thinking and implementation is based on the principles of HACCP that are often associated with food safety management. How they interrelate can be seen in the diagram below.

The potential benefits of combining risk-based thinking, PDCA and the process approach include:


  • Focussing your FSMS and activities on higher-risk processes
  • Understanding how processes within your organization are interdependent
  • More effective use of resources
  • Improved agility in meeting the requirements of new customers and/or meet new requirements established by existing customers

Why we?

The food industry impacts every person on the planet. Though what the world’s population may eat may differ depending on the geography, wealth, age, gender and availability of goods, no other sector plays such a vital role in all of our day-to-day lives and culture. Economically, food represents 10% of Global GDP (valued at US$48 trillion by the World Bank).

But the food sector also faces significant challenges. Each year, food-borne illness makes one in ten people ill and is the cause of death for millions around the world. Population growth projections and an increasing middle class suggest that the demand for food will increase 70% by 2050. And, consumers are increasingly conscious about what goes into their food, how it’s made, its impact on ecosystems and where it comes from.

We believes the world deserves food that is safe, sustainable and socially responsible. We support the food sector by developing and publishing standards of best practice, supply chain solutions as well as training and certification to not only the most popular food safety standards, but other business improvement standards that work together to make organizations more resilient.

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