Many large industries in the world, including energy, chemical, medical and cybersecurity, are currently using a method, called Bowtie, to manage risk.
Despite this widespread use, it has yet to be adopted by most food and drink businesses, yet many could use it to tackle challenges that have been a focus in recent years.
Allergen management and food safety culture are at the top of the agenda for many food business operators (FBOs). Yet the ordinary charts and tables of HACCP plans are seen by some as currently lacking the adaptability and holistic view that is key for good communication.
This is where Bowtie comes in. As seen in Figures below, this simple tool can help FBOs visualize hazards and risks while providing a much more comprehensive review of their food safety systems. In a nutshell, this can allow food manufacturers to boost food safety culture (by highlighting why barriers are in place) and aid allergen management (by identifying new barriers).
It’s important to highlight that this simple tool does not replace HACCP, but instead can enhance FBO’s food safety management and HACCP plans by providing an extra level of robustness and visual clarity. The tool makes it easier for FBOs to identify factors that could compromise barriers, helping them put in place additional barriers to prevent a hazard, such as allergens, from occurring and escalating.
Put simply, FBOs can use Bowtie to improve their current food safety system by proactively identifying risks and easily adapting their system to incidences and occurrences.
How to visualize your HACCP plan using the Bowtie framework
The following figures break down how a HACCP plan can be visualized as a Bowtie