There are over 1 million restaurants in the United States, proving the food industry continues to thrive. If you’re in the industry or considering getting into it, you need to know what a preventative controls qualified individual (PCQI) is.

Understanding this will help ensure that your food-based business adheres to the laws set up by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Doing so can prevent problems and allow your business to continue to grow.

Keep reading to learn more about what a PCQI is and why it’s so important to have one if you’re in the food industry.

What Is a Preventative Controls Qualified Individual?

A preventative controls qualified individual has completed PCQI certification which allows them to perform certain tasks within a food-based business, primarily focused on creating and enforcing a food safety system. The role was created as part of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and the modernized Current Good Manufacturing Practices (CGMPs).

What Responsibilities Does a PCQI Have?

There are four primary responsibilities of a PCQI in addition to general activities that involve the manufacturing of food. Let’s take a closer look at each of these to help you understand why each is an essential part of food production.

Preparation of the Food Safety Plan

This responsibility involves creating a food safety plan based on the food in question. Since each food has different regulations, it’s important to ensure your company is following the correct ones for what you’re making.

Validation of Preventative Controls

Preventative controls must be validated to prove they’re doing what they’re designed to do. This role of the PCQI may involve following a scientific process to show that their food safety plan is working to avoid various food safety hazards.

Records Review

Record-keeping is an important part of a food industry business to ensure everything is being done according to the set standards. It’s the PCQI that is in charge of reviewing these records and addressing any problems that might come up.

Reanalysis of the Food Safety Plan

The Food Safety Plan may not be perfect when it’s first created. This is why the PCQI needs to continue to analyze it and determine how well it’s working. They can then make changes to improve their processes to continue to ensure compliance with food laws.

How Can You Become a PCQI?

The easiest way to become a PCQI is to take a Preventative Controls for Human Food course. Search online to find pcqi certification courses near you to get this valuable training certificate from the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO).

Want More Business Tips?

Now you know what a preventative controls qualified individual is. You can also see how having one is an essential part of a food business because of the recent changes in the laws.

If you want more tips and tricks to help you grow your business, keep reading our blog. It’s packed with posts that cover business and personal growth so you can start living your best life.

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