The position summary states the general nature and purpose of the job. Overall accountabilities are defined in this section.
Responsible for managing the Plant Food Safety and Quality Assurance Department to provide safe, high quality products that meet customer expectations. This role has the overall accountability of ensuring the food safety system is properly written, validated, documented and implemented as directed to ensure USDA and FDA regulatory compliance and the production of safe and wholesome products. Is accountable for the plant’s Quality System and must provide solid leadership to achieve company, plant, and department goals through various management, evaluation and improvement skills and strategies that improve overall quality and profitability. The Plant Food Safety and Quality Assurance Managerreports to the Plant Manager, the Corporate Food Safety Manager and the Corporate Quality Assurance Manager.
Responsibilities and tasks are written as follows:
Quality and Food Safety Verification and Compliance
- Verifies that all Food Safety, Quality Assurance and Regulatory programs are functioning as designed, being followed and correctly documented – thus ensuring the facility has the “regulatory evidence” required to prove they have produced safe and wholesome products.
- Ensures USDA regulatory compliance by making scientifically defendable decisions that do not result in unjustified decreases in operational productivity or efficiency.
- Able to quickly and thoroughly investigate a product/process failure, determine the root cause and take prompt corrective actions; while minimizing product exposure and production down time.
- Revise and update food safety and quality programs and procedures as directed.
- Accountable for the preparation and the execution of USDA daily verification tasks, as well as numerous 3rd party audits and USDA food safety system assessments. Takes appropriate corrective action as a result of any findings generated.
- Develops and fosters a strong working relationship with the USDA.
Food Safety and Quality Improvement
- Prevents HACCP, SSOP and process or product failures by working with Food Safety and Quality Assurance staff members and Operations to drive continuous improvement of product quality through developing food safety and quality plans, process controls, attention to process and specifications, food safety and quality training.
Sanitation and Food Safety
- Accountable for the overall design of the facility’s sanitation program. Including authoring a written USDA regulatory program, sanitation performance tracking, training of applicable facility production and meeting regularly with the USDA to discuss sanitation findings.
- Ensures that operational and pre-operational sanitation is acceptable. Implements and develops necessary verification activities including micro sampling to verify the effectiveness of sanitation activities. Takes action in response to negative micro and Shelf Life data to drive improvement.
- Manages daily activities, in-depth training and development of the Food Safety and Quality staff members.
- Document corrective actions and follow-up as necessary and conduct GMP and Sanitation audits.
- Executes response to negative micro and Shelf Life data to drive continuous improvement, by auditing and scrutinizing the level of equipment cleanliness prior to the start of operations.
- Creates and maintain SQF Quality Plan.
- Completes reassessments of SQF Quality Plan if:
- Addition or removal of processing steps.
- Introduction of new product with processing steps not in currently included in Quality Analysis
- At a minimum SQF Quality Plan is reassessed annually.
- Oversees the development, implementation, review and maintenance of the SQF System, including food safety fundamentals outlined in 2.4.2, the food safety plan outlined in 2.4.3 and the food quality plan outlined in 2.4.4;
- Takes appropriate action to maintain the integrity of the SQF System.
- Communicates to relevant personnel all information essential to ensure the effective implementation and maintenance of the SQF System.
- Responsible for managing performance plans/reviews, work schedules and assignments of other food safety staff members.
- In the absence of key personnel the employee’s supervisor or qualified designee (one that has been trained in the key employee's duties) is responsible to complete or delegate the completion of all required tasks and responsibilities.
The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this job. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified. May perform other duties as assigned.
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals to perform the essential functions.
- Bachelor’s degree (B.A.) in Food Science or related field from a regionally accredited four-year college or university and 5+ years’ experience in the food industry; or equivalent combination of education and experience.
- Knowledge and understanding of quality assurance principles, food science and meat processing, SPC and statistics; preferred.
- In-depth understanding of microbiological testing and limited chemistry testing.
- Knowledge of various pathogens and microbes associated with food production.
- Hands on experience conducting microbiological testing of meat and poultry products.
- Comprehensive knowledge of USDA, FSIS, HACCP, and SSOP requirements.
- USDA/HACCP Certified, preferred.
- SQF Certified Expert, preferred.
- Ability to uphold regulatory, company and customer standards.
- Ability to respond to common inquiries or complaints from customers, regulatory agencies, or members of the business community.
- Knowledge of Database software; Inventory software; Manufacturing software; Spreadsheet and Word Processing software; QMS system and SAP.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills.
- Strong decision making and problem solving skills.
- Excellent planning and organizational skills with demonstrated multi-tasking and project management skills.
- Must be able to travel up to 10% of the time.
- May be required to work long hours and weekends.
- Provides leadership and guidance to employees in the Food Safety and Quality Assurance Department.
- Carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the organization's policies and applicable laws.
- Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and disciplining employees; addressing complaints and assisting in providing appropriate resolutions.
The physical demands described here are representative of those an employee should possess to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
- Occasionally lift and/or move up to 50 pounds
- Specific vision includes close vision, distance vision, and ability to adjust focus.
- Frequently required to stand; walk; use hands to finger, handle, or feel; reach with hands and arms; stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl and talk or hear.
The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
- Office and plant setting. The plant environment will include wet or humid conditions (non-weather related), extreme cold and heat (non-weather related), working near moving mechanical parts, exposure to fumes or airborne particles, and chemicals.
- Noise level in the work environment is usually moderate but can be loud when in the production area.