Food Safety Qualification: Preventive Controls for Human Food

By Gemma Creagh - Last update


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When it comes to the food industry, there’s a lot you need to know to advance your career. The Food Safety Modernisation Act (FSMA) FSPCA Preventive Controls for Human Food (PCQI Qualification Course) from SQT Training is a course you won’t want to miss. This Food Safety qualification programme kicks off 29th January, and there are presently only 2 spots left.

Food Safety Legislation Background

Under US Code of Federal Regulation CFR 117 [LH1] each food manufacturer in the US must have a Preventive Controls Qualified Individual (PCQI).  This individual must have successfully completed training in the development and application of risk base preventive controls using a standardized curriculum recognized by the FDA.  The Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis, and Risk‐based Preventive Controls for Human Food regulation (referred to as the Preventive Controls for Human Food regulation) is intended to ensure safe manufacturing/processing, packing and holding of food products for human consumption in the United States. The regulation requires that certain activities must be completed by a “preventive controls qualified individual.” This course, developed by FSPCA, is the “standardized curriculum” recognized by FDA; successfully completing this course is one way to meet the requirements for a “preventive controls qualified individual.”

What you need to know

Under the Preventive Controls for Human Food rule, the responsibilities of a “preventive controls qualified individual” include to oversee or perform

  1. Preparation of the Food Safety Plan
  2. Validation of the preventive controls
  3. Records review
  4. Reanalysis of the Food Safety Plan, and other activities as appropriate to the food

The FSMA concept is to move away from a reactive approach towards a preventive system. With FSMA there are seven rules which are specific to different types of foods, elements of the supply chain and stakeholders.  With this level of complexity and change, the challenge for Irish indigenous and Irish based multinational food companies is to understand how these rules will affect their current Food Safety Management Systems.

Staying safe

The Food Safety Modernisation Act (FSMA) is the most significant change to US Food Safety legislation in over 70 years.  The act was signed into law by President Obama in 2011.  FSMA is in response to numerous food poisoning incidents that have occurred in the US over the past ten years.  Figures released by the USDA estimate that each year over 48 million Americans become ill from food poisoning, resulting in 50,000 hospitalisations and over 3,000 deaths.

Find out more about this effective training programme here.


Gemma Creagh

Gemma is a nomadic writer, filmmaker, & journalist. She was born in Cork, lives in Dublin, and studied in Belfast & Galway, where she graduated from NUIG’s Writing MA. She has penned articles for national publications and is the editorial assistant for Film Ireland Magazine. Gemma was the writer and co-producer of the five-part comedy ‘Rental Boys’ for RTÉ’s Storyland. Her short films have screened at festivals around the world.
Open Evening at Institute of Technology Carlow
NUI Certificate in Training and Continuing Education Cork