Challenges in Performance of Food Safety Management Systems: A Case of Fish Processing Companies in Tanzania

J.B. Kussaga, P.A. Luning, B.P.M. Tiisekwa, L. Jacxsens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


This study provides insight for food safety (FS) performance in light of the current performance of core FS management system (FSMS) activities and context riskiness of these systems to identify the opportunities for improvement of the FSMS. A FSMS diagnostic instrument was applied to assess the performance levels of FSMS activities regarding context riskiness and FS performance in 14 fish processing companies in Tanzania. Two clusters (cluster I and II) with average FSMS (level 2) operating under moderate-risk context (score 2) were identified. Overall, cluster I had better (score 3) FS performance than cluster II (score 2 to 3). However, a majority of the fish companies need further improvement of their FSMS and reduction of context riskiness to assure good FS performance. The FSMS activity levels could be improved through hygienic design of equipment and facilities, strict raw material control, proper follow-up of critical control point analysis, developing specific sanitation procedures and company-specific sampling design and measuring plans, independent validation of preventive measures, and establishing comprehensive documentation and record-keeping systems. The risk level of the context could be reduced through automation of production processes (such as filleting, packaging, and sanitation) to restrict people’s interference, recruitment of permanent highskilled technological staff, and setting requirements on product use (storage and distribution conditions) on customers. However, such intervention measures for improvement could be taken in phases, starting with less expensive ones (such as sanitation procedures) that can be implemented in the short term to more expensive interventions (setting up assurance activities) to be adopted in the long term. These measures are essential for fish processing companies to move toward FSMS that are more effective.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)621-630
JournalJournal of Food Protection
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • listeria-monocytogenes
  • quality
  • plants
  • haccp
  • standards
  • industry
  • exports
  • output
  • model
  • chain

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