UK Produced Chilled Foods
Hygiene and safety standards in UK chilled food manufacturers’ premises are amongst the best in the world with a full Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) approach implemented from farm to fork, strict temperature controls and full traceability of raw materials. The CFA ‘Best Practice Guidelines for the Production of Chilled Foods‘ are the basis of the European Chilled Food Federation‘s operating recommendations for manufacturers and its principles are part of the British Retail Consortium’s Global Standard for Food.
Generally, chilled prepared foods comprise several ingredients and cover a variety of products such as pizzas, sandwiches, recipe dishes, soups and salads, which are ready to eat, ready to reheat or ready to cook. Where possible they are made from UK seasonal raw materials but, as production is year round, where overseas sources are also used these must also meet UK standards.
Chilled foods are made to order using Just-In-Time systems. Manufacturers, therefore, operate short production runs with products often made on the day of delivery. Unlike many other countries, UK chilled foods generally have very short shelf lives, typically from 1-10 days.
Because most chilled foods are made for retailer brands, manufacturers have close working relationships with their retail customers and this helps to underpin a robust supply chain.