Colour Coding, HACCP and 5S Explained

Colour Coding Systems

Colour coding tools has become a recognised asset within good manufacturing practices in food and beverage production, proven to support segregation, improve visual standards of cleaning and support the identification of foreign body caused by wear and tear of cleaning and food contact tools.

Tools with matching-coloured handles and heads can be identified quickly and easily, which is especially important within workplaces where a number of languages are spoken and can greatly aid training of staff.

Segregation of activities is particularly important when managing:

  • Different levels of risk within manufacturing operations (high level, high care and low risk);
  • Manufacture of allergens and non-allergens containing products, ensuring specific tools can be safely managed during use, cleaning and storage;
  • Cross-contamination routes related to usage of equipment for cleaning and handling products;
  • Specific hazards: a methodical colour coded approach associates each product with a particular area, promoting inter-departmental and/or food-type segregation.

The majority of our hygiene range is colour coded, with up to twelve vibrant, easily identifiable colours to choose from.



HACCP Explained

Developed by the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in 1960s, the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) initiative was created to ensure a supply of crumb and pathogen-free food for astronauts, ensuring food had a suitable shelf life to aid their survival during space travel.


This model was extremely successful and in 1970s it was introduced to food manufacturers in USA, as well as becoming part of FDA inspectors’ training. HACCP-hazard management model reached Europe in 1980s via the World Health Organisation Europe.


Further developments to the model took place to reach the 7 principles in use today, assisting food processors and food service companies in incorporating a preventative system to identify hazards that may exist within its operations, nominating Critical Control Points to ensure suitable monitoring and plan of action if things go wrong, in time to avoid harm to consumers’ health.


The seven key principles of HACCP are:


  • Conduct an analysis of hazards
  • Determine the Critical Control Points
  • Establish critical limits
  • Set up a monitoring system for CCPs
  • Establish a procedure for corrective action
  • Establish procedures to verify the effectiveness of the HACCP plan
  • Maintain thorough records.

As part of the preparation to develop a HACCP Plan, manufacturers need to establish what activities are part of their Pre-Requisite Programme (PRP), and how these activities are being controlled.


A Pre-Requisite Programme is a series of generic fundamental activities, taking place in food manufacturing and non-manufacturing areas, created and controlled to ensure minimum standards to produce food and drinks with food safety in mind.


This programme is where good manufacturing, good hygiene and good operational practices and documented with details on how control takes place in your site. Activities such as pest control management, hygiene and housekeeping (5S), training, warehousing, supplier approval, site security, maintenance, calibration and cleaning are usually included in the programme.


More information about PRP can be found within Codex Alimentarius General Principles for Food Hygiene. (link to the document inserted)

A well thought and documented Pre-Requisite Programme provides a great starting point when reviewing food safety culture on site, providing further assurances that all teams and activities are on track to provide the basic controls needed for safe manufacturing.

The 5S System Explained

Housekeeping is a very useful pre-requisite programme used in food manufacturing to ensure tools and areas are kept organised, orderly stored and suitably cleaned.


5S system is one of the methodologies used for organising workplace areas, originated in Japan for just-in-time manufacturing. It counts on order and standardisation to support businesses improve efficiency and profitability, based on the following principles:


  1. Sort – establish which tools are needed in which area
  2. Set in order – organise into designated colour coded zones
  3. Shine – Carry out regular cleaning and maintenance
  4. Standardise – Set out cleaning and maintenance procedures
  5. Sustain – Ensure standards are followed.



How Hillbrush Hygiene Can Help

  • Eliminate cross-contamination
  • Colour coded products help segregate food types or departments
  • Prioritise and control potential hazards
  • Internationally recognized
  • Used at all stages of food production
  • Trading benefits, through improved customer and consumer confidence
  • Can be aligned with other Management and QA systems

Contact Us For More Information