Implementing a Food Safety System for Small-Scale and Raw Milk Cheese Plants

Created with SARE support
Kerry E. Kaylegian | 2019 | 28 pages

The purpose of this guide is to assist small-scale and raw milk cheesemakers in conducting Hazard Analyses of their processes to ensure they are producing the safest product possible and to meet the requirements of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

The author, Dr. Kerry E. Kaylegian of the Pennsylvania State University, created this resource to fill a gap in the materials to address the needs of small-scale dairy processors, particularly those interested in producing raw milk cheeses that may pose additional food safety risks.

A companion document -- Penn State Extension Food Safety Plan for Raw Milk Gouda Cheese Teaching Example -- provides an example for raw milk, flavored Gouda. Together, these two documents address the gap in materials available for the manufacture of raw milk cheese.


  • Introduction to the Food Safety Modernization Act
  • An Introduction to Food Safety Systems
  • The Foundations of a Food Safety System
    • FSMA Training Requirements
    • Good Manufacturing Practices
    • Prerequisite Programs
  • Hazards
  • Types of Hazards
  • Hazards in Cheesemaking
  • The Hazard Analysis
    • The Hazard Analysis Process: Step-by-Step
    • Preliminary Steps for the Hazard Analysis
    • The Hazard Analysis
  • Writing Preventive Controls
  • Recall Plans
  • Resources

Want more information? See the related SARE grant:

This material is based upon work that is supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture through the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.