Quality Control.

Quality Control is a key function within Highland Smoked Salmon. A small team of highly trained staff check and monitor the quality at all stages in the process from the procurement and receipt of Raw Materials and Ingredients to the Despatch of finished products.

The Quality Control Department are responsible for enforcing the requirements of the Quality Management System and HACCP System.

Raw Material Sourcing and Receipt.

Quality begins with the sourcing of consistent quality Raw Materials and Ingredients to the required standards.

Highland Smoked Salmon operate a strict policy of only purchasing Raw Materials and Packaging from a select list of Approved Suppliers.

Each Raw Material and Ingredient has a comprehensive Specification that defines the specific product requirement, these specifications are agreed with the Supplier and form the basis for the Raw Material Receiving Checks.

On delivery to Site the integrity of the delivery vehicle and condition of the consignment are checked to ensure conformity to the Specification; only when the Quality Control Person is satisfied is the Raw Material accepted and placed into the appropriate storage environment.

Process Quality Checks.

At each stage in the process the Quality Control Team check to ensure that the Safety and Integrity of the Product is maintained at all times and that the desired Quality Attributes are achieved ensuring a consistent quality finished product.

These checks include verification of Critical Control Points and the attainment of Critical Limits, Slicing Checks (Slice thickness and Slicing Quality), Packing Checks (Weight, Pack presentation) Boxing down and Labelling Checks (Metal Detection, Label and Coding, Case Packing and Palletisation) and Freezing down and Storage Checks.

On Despatch the Quality Control department undertake a series of pre-loading assessments that include vehicle hygiene and Product and Vehicle temperature; only once these checks are satisfactory can out-loading commence.

Finished Product Checks.

The Quality Control department also undertake a series of further checks on the Finished Product.

Salt Analysis.

Each batch of Cold Smoked Salmon is tested in-house to verify that there is adequate Salt Content to ensure food safety and preservation batches are only released to slicing and packing on receipt of satisfactory salt results.

Organoleptic Assessment.

Each batch of product is tested Organoleptically to (Smell, Taste, Texture and Appearance) to ensure consistency in eating quality.

Microbiological Testing.

All microbiological Testing is undertaken by our UKAS Accredited Contract Laboratory; the Quality Department are trained to take samples and in the techniques of swabbing to minimise the risk of contamination. Testing includes Raw Materials, In Process Sampling, Finished Product Sampling, Environmental Swabbing and Service sampling.

Traceability.

The traceability system at Highland Smoked Salmon is based on a unique batch coding system that is linked to a Site wide, Computer based Process Control System supported by manual Quality Control and Production Records. This gives Highland Smoked Salmon the ability to rapidly trace any product back to its individual Ingredients and packaging (in the case of Salmon it is possible to trace back to the Farm, Harvest Date and treatment records.

HACCP and the Quality Management System.

Highland Smoked Salmon undertakes a comprehensive HACCP Study for each product produced, the HACCP Study is based on Codex Alimentarius principles; Each HACCP Study is regularly reviewed by a multi-disciplinary team with specialist HACCP Training and Knowledge.

HACCP forms the basis of the Quality Management System that is documented to address the sections of the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety. The Quality Control Department are responsible for the maintenance and continual improvement of the Quality Management System.