How to Become a PCQI (Preventive Controls Qualified Individual)
While the list of FSMA’s new requirements is dense and varies greatly for some types of facility, one key change that applies to nearly all food companies is the introduction of a preventive controls qualified individual (PCQI). Not only does FSMA require facilities to have a food safety plan implemented, but the plan must be prepared and applied by a properly trained PCQI.
The general route to becoming qualified as a PCQI is to take the standardized training course taught by a “Preventive Controls Lead Instructor”. This is an instructor that has applied to FSPCA, been accepted and completed the Lead Instructor training course. They are able to register the class with AFDO and students will receive an AFDO/FSPCA certificate if they successfully complete the class. This approach clearly meets the requirements defined in 117.180 (c)(1) of the preventive controls rule.
” To be a preventive controls qualified individual, the individual must have successfully completed training in the development and application of risk-based preventive controls at least equivalent to that received under a standardized curriculum recognized as adequate by FDA.”
Taking a course recognized by FDA provides the PCQI with a certificate that demonstrates they have met the training requirement, it is a clear a straightforward way to become qualified.