This article is written to meet the following sections of the Standards:

BRCGS Food Safety Issue 84.7 Maintenance
BRCGS Packaging Issue 64.7 Maintenance
BRCGS Agents & Brokers Issue 3
Not applicable
BRCGS Storage & Distribution Issue 46.2 Maintenance
FSSC22000 Version 5.1ISO 22000:2018 7.1.3 Infrastructure
IFS Food Version 74.16.3 – 4.16.5 Maintenance and repair
SQF Edition 911.2.1 Repairs and Maintenance Pre-operational inspection

Before we get into looking at the maintenance system, there are a number of general maintenance controls that are required.

The aim is to ensure that these general engineering tasks don’t pose a risk to the product.

Calibration maintenance tasks

If your engineers adjust equipment during calibration, records of the changes must be kept.

Maintenance tools

Maintenance procedures must state that tools and other equipment must be put away after use, to ensure that they don’t become sources of potential contamination.

Many retailer standards expect toolboxes to be controlled. This means they need to be clean and have an inventory so that tools don’t go missing.

Maintenance tools must also be fit for purpose, which means they need to not be a foreign body risk – wooden tools must not be used.

Maintenance eDocs

Temporary repairs

It’s acceptable to use temporary repairs, but only if they:

  • Don’t pose a risk to product.
  • Are documented, repaired and verified.

Temporary repairs should be trended.

Temporary structures

Temporary structures which are constructed during building work or refurbishment must be designed and located to avoid:

  • Pest entry or harbourage.
  • Product contamination.
  • Unhygienic conditions.

A documented risk assessment of the temporary works and the required structures must be conducted prior to their installation.

Chemical control

Lubrication points and application methods of any lubricant must be designed so that they don’t contaminate the product.

Materials used during maintenance tasks which come into contact with food or food contact packaging, such as lubricants, must be food grade and there must be evidence to demonstrate this. Specifications must also be in place and they must be reviewed to ensure that the materials don’t contain allergens.


Paint used in product areas needs to be suitable for the environment that it’ll be used in and the application it’s going to be used on. Paint also needs to be kept in good condition so that it doesn’t become a foreign body hazard. Product contact surfaces must not be painted.

Engineering workshops

The engineering workshop must be controlled to minimise the potential for product contamination.

Workshop must:

  • Have swarf controls in place, such as mats.
  • Be kept clean and tidy.
  • Have handwashing facilities for staff and contractors entering product areas.


Engineering contractors must have a designated host and be supervised while working unless they’ve had sufficient training to allow them to work unsupervised. This typically means that they must have completed an induction to be allowed to work unsupervised.

Hand-back procedure

There must be a hand-back procedure which ensures that product isn’t put at risk following maintenance work.

The purpose of this is to make sure that the engineering work that’s happened, doesn’t pose a risk to the product that will then be processed.

The hand-back procedure and records must include:

  • The removal of all engineering equipment, tools and parts.
  • Checks and formal acceptance that the equipment and area is fit to restart.
Maintenance eDocs

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