Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures, also known as SSOP or Sanitation SOP, are the sanitation procedures for food production plants required by the Food Safety and Inspection Service of the USDA.
SSOPs define relatively completely what constitutes an acceptable way of running a food production plant as well as a methodology for defining and documenting the policies and procedures a particular plant institutes in order to comply.
All HACCP (Hazard analysis and critical control points) plans require SSOPs to be documented and periodically updated. The “responsible educated management” in charge of the process should consider these documents to be part of the public record since in the event of a serious sanitary failure they can be released to the public.
A Sanitation SOP must address eight main areas:
The SSOP is a written document, an operations manual that describes chemicals, concentrations, application methods, and timing for every part of the plant. It includes a Master Sanitation Schedule, which answers the questions: what, when, and who as well as describing the “how” of the cleaning and sanitizing procedures.
Also required are cleaning and sanitation verification records to document that procedures and schedules were followed. The "digital" version of this document can be created by using commercially available software packages for processing the digital SSOPs as well as the more complete HACCP plan.
At FSS Food Safety, we realize that using sanitation chemicals and other substances is no easy task. They need to be used correctly to be effective and any misuse of these products can be very detrimental. An SSOP is so important to the success of your food business.
If your SSOP follows all compliances and is followed by all employees there is no reason for you to have an unsterile working environment. FSS Food Safety can help you with your SSOP and help train employees so they follow your SSOP plan, ensuring plant safety.