Is your canning facility ready for a retailer audit?

Is your canning facility ready for a retailer audit?

Ensuring Food Safety Compliance: The Power of Time Temperature Indicators in Canned Food Thermal Processing

In the highly regulated world of food production, maintaining compliance with food safety standards is essential. Audits conducted by supermarket and retailer auditors play a critical role in evaluating a food production facility's adherence to good manufacturing practices and recordkeeping. One area that often requires rigorous documentation is the thermal processing of canned food. In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of using time temperature indicators to demonstrate your commitment to food safety, good manufacturing practices, and accurate recordkeeping during audits.

1. Demonstrating Precision in Thermal Processing

Thermal processing is a crucial step in the canning process, ensuring the safety and quality of the final product. Time temperature indicators (TTIs) provide a visual representation of the precise time and temperature conditions reached during processing. By using TTIs, you can demonstrate your commitment to accurately following thermal processing parameters, including proper heat penetration and sterilization. This level of precision enhances food safety and instills confidence in auditors that your facility is actively implementing good manufacturing practices.

2. Enhancing Recordkeeping Accuracy

Accurate recordkeeping is a fundamental aspect of food safety compliance. TTIs serve as a valuable addition to your recordkeeping system, providing tangible evidence of the thermal processing conditions for each canned batch. By affixing TTIs to cans during processing, you create a permanent record that can be easily referenced during audits. This level of documentation enhances transparency and helps auditors evaluate the reliability and accuracy of your recordkeeping practices, ensuring compliance with food safety standards.

3. Strengthening Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs)

Good manufacturing practices form the backbone of food safety and quality assurance. The use of TTIs in canned food thermal processing showcases your commitment to maintaining GMPs. By implementing TTIs, you are effectively monitoring and controlling critical factors such as time and temperature, which are essential in eliminating microbial risks. This proactive approach demonstrates your facility's dedication to producing safe and high-quality canned foods, fostering a positive impression during audits.

4. Real-Time Process Monitoring

During thermal processing, real-time process monitoring is essential to ensure consistent quality and safety. TTIs provide immediate visual feedback, allowing operators to quickly identify any deviations from the desired time and temperature parameters. This timely feedback enables corrective actions to be taken promptly, minimizing the risk of compromised canned products. Auditors value this proactive approach to process monitoring, as it highlights your commitment to maintaining strict food safety standards throughout production.

5. Promoting Consumer Confidence

Supermarket and retailer auditors are keen on ensuring that the products they stock meet stringent food safety requirements. By incorporating TTIs in your thermal processing, you convey a clear message of commitment to consumer safety. The use of TTIs demonstrates your proactive approach to quality assurance and food safety, instilling confidence in auditors that your facility prioritizes the production of safe and compliant canned products. This can contribute to stronger partnerships with retailers and foster a positive reputation in the industry.


The use of time temperature indicators in canned food thermal processing is a powerful tool for quality assurance and quality control staff. By incorporating TTIs into your processes, you can effectively demonstrate compliance with food safety standards during audits conducted by supermarket and retailer auditors. TTIs showcase your precision in thermal processing, enhance recordkeeping accuracy, strengthen good manufacturing practices, facilitate real-time process monitoring, and promote consumer confidence.

Remember, successful audits depend on a combination of robust quality systems and evidence-based documentation. By leveraging the benefits of TTIs, you not only ensure compliance but also showcase your commitment to food safety, good manufacturing practices, and overall product quality.

We have been advising our customers on how to integrate TTIs and other temperature indicator products into their thermal processing workflow for 35 years. Contact us to find out how you can elevate your facility's standing in the eyes of auditors and reinforce your dedication to producing safe and compliant canned foods.

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  • Tim Arrowsmith