A word from the expert: quality control at Fresh & Saucy Foods
Quality control is a major step in production throughout the agro-food manufacturing sector. It determines the acceptance, rejection or adaptation of the product according to the food safety and hygiene specifications and in this case the AFSCA in Belgium. Quality control is a function of high responsibility within Fresh & Saucy Foods, carried out by Els Wulleman, Quality Control Manager. She explains to us today how this is achieved through the production of sauces, side dishes and salads prepared in our company.
Quality control takes place at several levels and each step requires specific tests. In order, we check the quality of the following:
- The goods
- Finished products
- The production environment
- Staff & infrastructure hygiene
Quality of goods and production ingredients
Each of our suppliers has a grade from A to C corresponding to the quality of its goods. This is granted by us after precise microbiological tests. The A rating is the best and is a testament to the high quality of the product. Apart from these, goods with a B or C are checked for each lot received. The temperature of the goods is checked upon arrival of the goods, for all suppliers regardless of their rating.
The raw materials that we mainly use in the production of sauces are oil, eggs and spices. Oil and spices are very stable ingredients which require infrequent checks unlike eggs for which there is a risk of salmonella contamination. These are therefore microbiologically tested for each batch received and receive a certificate of conformity before use.
Checks of the production process and finished products
The production process is checked by our manager several times a day to ensure that all the rules in favor of the quality of the products are respected. At the end of production, the finished products are tested in two stages:
- PH test: This should be within the range of values. Otherwise, it is adjusted using additives.
- Taste test: The quality manager tests the taste of the sauce to ensure that it is produced correctly.
The sauce is then left to stand for 24 hours after which a new pH test is carried out as well as tests concerning the stability, viscosity, density and color of the sauce. Then, microbiological testing is performed on a sample to verify that the quality and the production process is valid. If everything is validated, the product can be delivered to the customer.
Other tests can be performed at the customer’s request such as nutritional value tests or allergen tests.
The production environment must be healthy and meet all AFSCA standards
The production environment is checked twice a day to ensure that all safety and hygiene rules as well as the elements in favor of quality are respected. Likewise, the uniforms and good hygiene of the personnel are checked at the same frequency.
The water is checked twice a year.
At Fresh & Saucy Foods, there are hundreds of recipes for sauces and dozens of salad toppings that we produce under the most rigorous control. Would you like more information about our products? Discover our entire assortment in our catalog of sauces here!
More information ? Questions about our services ? Contact customer service by email at firstname.lastname@example.org