The acronym ISO has long been accepted as a synonym guaranteeing high quality. However, consumers are not always aware of the benefits of an enterprise which is certified according to ISO standards. We will discuss these benefits in the article. ISO - is an abbreviation, which is derived from the name of the International Organization for Standardization. The International Organization for Standardization develops standards, compliance with which ensures that products and services are safe, reliable and of high quality, and production processes are based on the most effective use of resources with minimal impact on the environment. ISO standards are developed for a variety of areas, including: quality management, environmental safety, energy management, etc. The majority of ISO standards are used in many countries, including Ukraine.
Ukrainian national version of ISO standards are called SSU (State Standard of Ukraine) ISO.
Why ISO standards are important to consumers?
First of all, the presence of a valid ISO certificate at an enterprise provides confidence in the safety of products purchased by consumers. These standards define common specifications and production standards under which goods are produced and services provided. Due to standardization the consumer can be sure of proper quality and its environmental performance. Secondly, the development of standards involves not only producers and service providers, but also consumer organizations in different countries. This means that products that come off the production lines of certified enterprise are made with full respect to all the requirements of customers. This is a good reason to pay attention to the presence or absence of ISO mark on the product's packaging.
What lies behind the numbers?
All ISO standards have their marking, which indicates their scope. The numbers up to the colon in the title indicate what the standard is, a standard (quality, environment, etc.), and the numbers after it - the year in which the standard was approved. For example, the INTER FOOD company has the following certified standards: ISO 9001:2008, ISO 22000:2005, ISO 14001:2004. Let's decipher each of these standards.
ISO 9001:2008. One of the most popular standards developed by the International Organization for Standardization. It is accepted in more than 170 countries worldwide.
ISO 9001 – is a quality management system certification which ensures that the company can produce products at a stable level of quality and constantly improve it. In Ukraine counterpart of this standard is the SSU ISO 9001:2009. Working according to the principles of ISO 9001 means that the company controls the quality of the production. This minimizes the risk of having inappropriate product quality and makes working at improving the quality a fundamental principle of the production process.
ISO 22000:2005. This is a standard management system in the field of food safety and food production that combines the requirements of ISO 9001 and the principles of HACCP (Hazard analysis and critical control points). ISO 22000 ensures the safety of the final product provided to consumers, because during its manufacture all key factors which include microbiological, chemical and physical, are under the company's full control. Company certification under this standard ensures safety of raw materials, additives and components used during production for consumers. It also provides confidence that the company controls all the risk factors that affect the production process. National counterpart of the standard is SSU ISO 22000:2007.
ISO 14001:2004. It is part of a series of environmental management standards. ISO 14001 - this is the first step a company takes, that has decided to follow a path of taking care of the environment. Implementation of this standard in an enterprise means that a manufacturer strives to minimize their negative impact on the environment. The national version of the standard called SSU ISO 14001:2006 «Environment Management System."