Am I eligible to be a Registered Food Safety Practitioner?

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Registered Food Safety Practitioner (RFoodSPrac) is one of the the four stages in IFST's Register of Food Safety Professionals.

As a RFoodSPrac your role might typically be as a member of the Quality Assurance function, HACCP Team member, Internal Auditor or Hygiene Team supervisor. You will be accountable for the delivery of specific food safety functions.

Your responsibilities are likely to include:
  • technical functions within analytical laboratories / quality departments
  • operates Critical Control Point(s)
  • contributes to internal audit operations

Apply for Registered Food Safety Practitioner 

Qualifications & Experience

We will accept applicants from the food and related industries with a wide range of qualifications and food safety experience. You may also meet our requirements by a combination of work based learning and other qualifications. You will also need to become a member of IFST (if you are not already).

You will typically be qualified to QCF level 5 (Foundation Degree) qualification, in food science/technology or related science/engineering discipline, or equivalent qualifications/experience plus Introductory (level 2) HACCP certificate, or equivalent, together with at least 3 years' experience related to the food industry involving work in food safety within manufacturing, retailing, agriculture, assessment or enforcement, including 1year experience at the level applied for.

EXAMPLE PATHWAYS TO REGISTRATION

These examples are meant to guide you on the timescales likely to be taken for you to achieve registration. Due to the large number of different qualifications and combinations that are available it is impossible to be absolutely prescriptive. Your application will be considered by a team of assessors who will evaluate your qualifications and the competencies you have demonstrated. If your qualifications aren’t shown below, they will be considered by the assessors on a case-by-case basis.

  • Masters degree or PhD in food science or technology and closely related subjects and a Level 2 (Introductory) or Level 3 (Intermediate) HACCP qualification, plus 1 year experience in a relevant food safety related role
  • Degree in food science/technology and a Level 2 (Introductory) or Level 3 (Intermediate) HACCP qualification, plus 2 years experience in a relevant food safety related role. Up to 1 year work experience gained as part of your qualification can count towards this
  • Degree or higher degree in other science subjects or Foundation degree or Higher National Diploma in food science or technology and closely related subjects and a Level 2 (Introductory) or Level 3 (Intermediate) HACCP qualification, plus 3 years experience in a relevant food safety related role. Up to 1 year relevant work experience gained as part of your qualification can count towards this
  • RSciTech or Foundation degree or HND in other science subjects and a Level 2 (Introductory) or Level 3 (Intermediate) HACCP qualification, plus 4 years experience in a relevant food safety role
  • QCF Level 3 qualifications (for example A' levels in science subjects) and a Level 2 (Introductory) or Level 3 (Intermediate) HACCP qualification plus 4 years post qualification experience in a relevant food safety role
  • Non-scientific and qualifications below level 3 (in Scotland level 5) and a Level 2 (Introductory) or Level 3 (Intermediate) HACCP qualification, plus 7 years experience in a relevant food safety role

CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT (CPD)

You will also need to demonstrate your personal commitment to highest professional standards by continually and actively maintaining and enhancing your knowledge and skills throughout your career. You will be required to renew your registration every 3 years by demonstrating that you are still professionally active and that you have engaged in CPD. IFST has adopted a set of standards for Continuing Professional Development. These are similar to those adopted by other science based professional bodies, including members of the Science Council and the Health Professions Council. A wide range of activities can contribute to your CPD. It is for you to recognise needs and opportunities both inside and outside your workplace and to take advantage of learning experiences to developing your own CPD programme.

Competencies

The professional skills and attributes that you are expected to demonstrate – through a combination of knowledge and experience – are set out in 5 key areas:

Application of knowledge & understanding

Your post qualification experience will be expected to demonstrate you have these competencies:
Generic competencies
Food safety knowledge

Identify and use relevant scientific understanding, methods and skills to address broadly-defined, complex problems:

  • Develop, maintain and extend a sound theoretical approach to application of science and technology in practice
  • Apply underlying scientific concepts, principles and techniques in the context of new and different areas of work
  • Analyse, interpret and evaluate relevant scientific information, concepts and ideas and to propose solutions to problems

 

 

K1. Knowledge of the types and names potential microbial pathogens in the food, environment and on food handlers within the company’s factory and the factors influencing their spread and growth. Methods used in the factory to prevent/limit the growth of these organisms during storage, production and distribution of foods produced.

K2. Knowledge of the Critical Control Points in place within the food operation, the rationale behind their identification, the methods used to check that the CCPs are operating correctly and the corrective actions required where monitoring indicates deviation, including the use of the site quarantine/hold procedures.

K3. Knowledge of physical, chemical (including allergenic) hazards, their sources and methods for control within a food factory and the methods used for monitoring and verifying the effectiveness of these controls.

K4. Knowledge of the company approach to managing the supply chain, the maintenance and administration of current information about suppliers and the products/services supplied, the requirements for acceptance of incoming goods and the standards required.

K5. Knowledge of the sampling and testing schedule applicable within the operation, the correct sampling procedures and significance of incorrect sampling; knowledge of the method to be used for testing purposes, where this applies to the job role, and interpretation of results.

K6. Knowledge of the techniques used for conducting an effective internal audit; the identification of non-conformance and how these are handled within the operation.

K7. Knowledge of the procedures and documents within the food safety management system as applicable to the job role

Professional practice

Your post qualification experience will be expected to demonstrate you have these competencies:
Generic competencies
Food safety practice

Apply appropriate theoretical and practical methods:

  • Identify, review and select scientific techniques, procedures and methods to undertake tasks
  • Contribute to the organisation of tasks and resources
  • Participate in the design, development and implementation of solutions
  • Contribute to continuous performance improvement

P1. Experience of being involved in audits of factory and suppliers.  Also having experience of the planning of being involved in 3rd party technical audits by externals.

P2. Experience of being involved in the planning of and execution of new product launches.

P3. Experience of tutoring /mentoring new staff in processes and techniques used in the factory and /or laboratory.

P4. Experience of how to write a concise report.

P5. Experience of involvement in HACCP team meetings

P6. The ability to work effectively in a supervisory role and/or with other members of the team to facilitate the fulfilment of food safety requirements

Personal responsibility

Exercise personal responsibility in planning and implementing tasks:

  • Work autonomously while recognising limits of scope of practice
  • Take responsibility for safe working practices and contribute to their evaluation and improvement
  • Promote and ensure the application of quality standards
  • Take responsibility for planning and developing courses of action as well as exercising autonomy and judgement within broad parameters
Interpersonal skills

Demonstrate effective communication and interpersonal skills:

  • Demonstrate effective and appropriate communication skills
  • Demonstrate interpersonal and behavioural skills
  • Demonstrate productive working relationships and an ability to resolve problems
Commitment to professional standards

Demonstrate a personal commitment to professional standards

  • Comply with IFST's Code of Professional Conduct
  • Maintain and enhance knowledge, understanding and competence in your own area of practice through continuing professional development

Apply for Registered Food Safety Practitioner