Skip main navigation

New offer! Get 30% off your first 2 months of Unlimited Monthly. Start your subscription for just £29.99 £19.99. New subscribers only. T&Cs apply

Find out more

The Quality Management System

The Quality Management System
Animal feed and feed ingredients should be obtained and maintained in good condition and meet generally accepted quality standards. In particular, the feed and the feed ingredients should meet acceptable and statuary standards for level of pathogens, mycotoxins, pesticides, and undesirable substances that may compromise animal or consumer health. In order to control such hazards and produce high-quality feed products, feed mills are required to implement good manufacturing practices. Adhere to the requirements of their quality management system. And conduct hazard analysis critical control point principles. The quality management system is the business collection of documented and systematic processes which direct and control how feed is produced in order to meet their customer requirements and increase the efficiency of the production process.
The quality management system includes the feed mill’s organizational goals and aspirations. The specification which defines the end product. Policies and procedures which describes the business’s processes and standard operating procedures. Records which show compliance to the documented policies and procedures. A monitoring system to ensure the records are up to date and corrective action is conducted to a satisfactory level. There are a number of internationally recognized standards for quality management systems. These standards outline the requirements, implementation, and maintenance of a quality system. There is extensive research evidence which illustrates the benefits of the quality management system, including its importance for competitiveness and the survival in the global marketplace.
Ultimately, the quality management system is a continuous process of product assessment, auditing and fault correction through production, which helps to reduce production issues before they arise. Each business must compile their own list of policies and procedures. However, there are a number of generic policies and procedures
required, including: quality management. There must be a commitment from senior management right across all employees in the organization coupled with adequate people and material resources to ensure the implementation of an effective quality system. Staff. There must be a defined organizational framework which describes the key positions and responsibilities. All staff involved in the manufacture, storage, and handling of feed and feed ingredients should be adequately trained and aware of their role and responsibility in protecting feed safety. Equipment and premises. Buildings and equipment used to process feed and feeding ingredients should be hygienically designed, constructed of appropriate materials. Ensure the ease of operation, maintenance, and cleaning. Prevent the introduction of pests. And be kept in a clean and acceptable condition. Documentation.
The documents related to the quality management system must be developed, approved, updated, distributed, and archived in a timely manner. The use of approved suppliers. Raw materials should only be obtained from approved suppliers, meet their documented specifications and be fully traceable. Processing. The production process should be validated and prevent cross-contamination or deterioration during delivery, manufacturing, storage, and transportation. A number of control measures should be in place through production, including the use of additives and medicines, the control of pests, and hygiene. Product specifications. The final product should conform to the product specifications mutually agreed with the customers. Non-conformities. All non-conformities should be documented, including the decisions and corrective action made. Any feed materials rejected, recovered, or returned must be identifiable and tracked.
Integrated pest management. The feed mill should integrate appropriate measures that prevent the development and entry of pests, whilst minimizing the risk to human and environment health. Quality control. The feed mill should inspect the process, maintain, check and calibrate the measuring and monitoring devices. Carry out good sampling techniques and laboratory practices. And validate the analytical methods used. Regulations. The feed mills should apply all mandatory requirements and follow contractual requirements. Customer complaints. The organization must have a procedure in place to handle complaints, document the decision, withdrawals or recalls made, and review these actions.

The Quality Management System (QMS) is a formalised system that documents the businesses organisational structure, responsibilities, processes, procedures and resources which direct and control how products are produced in order to meet customer and regulatory requirements and improve the effectiveness and efficiency of production.

Documentation is at the heart of the quality management system. These documents must be controlled and documented procedures should be established to define the controls, i.e. in relation to document identification; update, withdrawal and archiving; storage; protection; retrieval; retention; and disposition of records.

Quality Policy

The quality policy is a brief statement or document which outlines the quality goals of the organisation (with a consideration of the customers’ requirements); a commitment to achieving them and ensuring continuous improvement.

Quality Objectives

Quality objectives are measurable steps toward achieving the quality policy. They help to focus the goals from the quality policy into plans for improvement. For example: no. of complaints; no. non-conformances, or % of on time deliveries. The organisation should define the acceptable tolerance levels and measure their quality objectives.

Quality Manual

The quality manual outlines the information related to the organisations quality management system, including the organisations goals and objectives, scope (i.e. products and industry and any exclusions), context (i.e. identify internal and external issues to prioritise and address factors which may affect the organisation), description of the process, roles and responsibilities, expectations, and quality policies. It also provides a precise record of all the documents related to the quality management system (e.g. procedures and standard operating procedures), i.e. it acts as an index or table of contents for the entire scope of the QMS.


Documented procedures define the policy in terms of who, what and where. Responsibilities and actions are outlined

Work Instructions

Documented work instructions, drawings and visual aids provide information about how to perform activities and processes.


Records are completed forms which provide objective evidence of activities performed or results achieved.

Benefits of a documented QMS

The quality management system influences every aspect of the businesses performance. The reported benefits include:

  • Outlining the businesses direction
  • Engaging employees
  • Ensuring processes are defined and controlled
  • Improving processes, reducing waste and lowering costs
  • Identifying training areas and improvements
  • Consistently meeting organisational, regulatory and customer requirements
  • Enhancing customer satisfaction and maintaining a good reputation

Ultimately, a QMS is a proactive approach which helps reduce issues before they arise through a continuous process of process and product assessment, auditing and fault correction.

This article is from the free online

Animal Feed Production: Feed Quality

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now