New Plant Requirements
Construction materials and chemicals
- Traffic flow - Walls - Ceilings
- Floors - Drains - Doors
- Windows - Ventilation - Lighting
- Washrooms - Hand washing facilities
- Water/steam - Equipment location/processes
- Equipment specifications - Chemical
storage area - Finalized drawings
Construction Materials and Chemicals
- All construction materials, packaging materials and chemicals
used to build and operate the plant must be acceptable for use
in a food plant. This includes paints and coatings intended for
use in food production and storage areas.
- Acceptable construction materials, packaging materials and chemicals
may be listed in the Reference Listing of Accepted Construction,
Packaging Materials and Non Food Chemical Products published by
CFIA. However this list is not maintained or updated to reflect
changes. If materials and chemicals are not on the list, plant
operators may seek assurance of their acceptability by obtaining
- a letter of non-objection from Health Canada, or
- a letter of guarantee from the supplier of the material or
- For more information, visit CFIA's
- A final list of all chemicals used in construction of the plant
must be kept if the plant intends to request federal registration
with the CFIA.
- The plant layout must be designed to accommodate the movement
of people, ingredients, packaging materials and finished products
so there is no cross contamination to compromise the finished
- The layout should progress logically in a linear fashion from
areas of high risk to successively lower risks (e.g. from raw
milk handling to pasteurized product handling to packaging areas).
- Where possible, employees should be restricted from moving between
raw and pasteurized product handling areas. However, where this
is necessary, adequate measures must be in place to control potential
- Where possible, raw milk receiving areas should have a separate
washroom for drivers. All drivers should be restricted from entering
other areas of the plant.
- Walls must rest on a concrete curb 15cm (6") above the
- Walls need to be finished in a smooth, non-porous cleanable
material. All panel seams, including corner junctions and wall
to ceiling or wall to floor junctions, must be sealed and watertight.
- All wall panels need to be secured to the underlying walls so
there is no air space behind. All fasteners need to be completely
sealed to prevent moisture from seeping behind walls.
- All ceilings in processing areas must be a minimum of 3m (10ft)
above the floor.
- Ceilings should be finished in a smooth non-porous cleanable
material and any open frame structures must be non-corrosive.
- Floors in the plant's production and storage areas must be smooth,
non-porous and cleanable. They must also have an adequate slope
for drainage to prevent fluids from pooling (generally a 1 to
2 per cent slope is recommended). The floor finish should continue
into a smooth coving at the junction with walls to ensure a watertight
transition between the floor and the wall.
- There must be an adequate number of floor drains (minimum of
one) in all production and product storage areas.
- Drains must be individually trapped directly below the floor
- Processing drains must not connect with sanitary (e.g. washroom)
drains within the confines of the building. After exiting the
plant and with proper backflow prevention, processing and sanitary
drainage may be combined into one disposal outlet.
- Drains should have an inner basket to catch large debris where
applicable and an easily removable cover for access and cleaning.
The basket and cover should be of non-corrosive material.
- All doors leading in or out of processing and storage areas
must be self closing.
- Door surfaces must be finished in smooth non-porous cleanable
- All production rooms must be equipped with hand-washing facilities
and an adequate supply of potable hot and cold water.
- All windows must be of safety glass or other shatterproof material.
- Any windows that open to the outside must be properly screened.
- The plant must have sufficient ventilation capabilities so that
sensitive areas, such as post pasteurization processing and packaging
areas, remain under positive pressure. Ventilation should cascade
to successively lower pressures as you move away from these areas
until raw receiving areas are under negative pressures.
- Ventilation systems need adequate filters to eliminate microbial
contamination. Ventilation should also have adequate air exchanges
to ensure excessive moisture is removed from processing and storage/aging
areas to prevent the accumulation of condensation.
- Laboratories should be separately exhausted or, at minimum,
under negative pressure relative to post pasteurization processing
and packaging areas.
- There must be adequate lighting in each room to meet the need
of operations in those rooms and all lighting must be shielded
- Lighting must be adequate to allow for effective inspections.
- There must be a minimum of one washroom as per the building
code and, where there are more than ten workers, a washroom for
- Washrooms must have self-closing doors and not open directly
into processing areas.
Hand Washing Facilities
- Each room in which milk or milk products are received or processed
must have a hand-washing sink with adequate supplies of hot and
cold potable water, soap, paper towels and preferably hands-free
- There must be an adequate supply with adequate pressure of potable
hot and cold water for all wash sinks and wash hoses.
- There must be adequate water at a temperature and pressure for
cleaning and sanitizing purposes.
- Any steam used in direct contact with product must be generated
such that it meets culinary requirements.
- Incompatible processes should be physically separated from each
- Equipment should be positioned so there is adequate space for
employee and inspector access around the equipment and sufficient
space to properly clean and sanitize all parts of the equipment.
- When available, manufacturer specifications should be clearly
visible on all equipment.
- Specifications should include what the equipment is made of
and the standards that the equipment meets (e.g. 3-A equipment
standards for dairy equipment, calibration and testing requirements,
preventative maintenance and detailed dismantling and cleaning
Chemical Storage Area
- There should be a separate area with good ventilation to the
building exterior for chemical storage.
- One finalized drawing must be completed prior to licensing and
a copy sent to OMAFRA. This will represent the plant as licensed
and any changes to this will require approval through an "Application
for a Permit" permit from OMAFRA.
Requirement to be in Compliance with the Building Code
Regulation 761 under the Milk Act requires that plants
be in compliance with building codes:
Section 97: A permit to construct or alter a building intended
for use as a plant or to alter a plant is issued on the condition
that, (d) the applicant has complied with the municipal by-laws
and the Acts and regulations thereunder applicable to the construction
or alteration being made. R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 761, s. 97.
For more information, contact:
Food Safety Advisor, Dairy
For more information:
Toll Free: 1-877-424-1300