As per BRC Global Food Safety Standard Revision 6, Corrective Action and Root Cause Analysis are viewed as two different things.
Corrective Action is defined as ‘Action to eliminate the cause of a detected non-conformity deviation’
Root Cause is defined as ‘Underlying cause of a problem which if adequately addressed will prevent the recurrence of the problem’
As both definitions are remarkably similar, it is quite difficult to understand one from the other. Applying both terms to a metal detection scenario …
If metal is detected in the product
Corrective Action initially focusses on the removal of the hazard from the product and the identification of where the hazard originated from.
Root Cause Analysis will look at how we allowed the hazard to contaminate the product in the first place …
– Why did our Preventive Maintenance programme fail?
– Have we committed sufficient resources to the maintenance department?
– Do the maintenance personnel fully understand their vital role in hazard control?
– Had our process risk assessment identified the hazard as a reasonable hazard?
As per the Root Cause definition, these are the underlying causes which if addressed will prevent the recurrence of the problem.