Good Manufacturing Practices GMP

Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) are a framework of standards and guidelines designed to ensure the quality and safety of manufactured products, including food, cosmetics and medicines. This framework is present to protect both consumers and businesses from the dangers of contamination, tampering and labeling errors.

What are good GMP manufacturing practices ?

Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) are a framework of standards and guidelines to ensure the quality and safety of industrial products, including food, cosmetics and medicines. These practices are important to prevent the risks associated with contamination, tampering and incorrect labelling of products, thus ensuring the protection of consumers and businesses.

GMP encompasses the entire production process, from the selection of raw materials, the design of facilities and equipment, to the quality control and distribution of final products. They require manufacturers to implement a quality management system, trained and competent teams, documented and proven procedures, as well as a traceability and product recall mechanism.

Based on universal principles, GMPs are flexible to adapt to different sectors and types of products. They evolve continuously to integrate scientific and technological advances, in addition to meeting the products quality standards regulations in force.

GMP compliance is overseen by specialized authorities that conduct inspections and audits to verify compliance.

Why implement GMP manufacturing best practices for your company ?

Adopting good manufacturing practices (GMP) offers multiple benefits to your business, benefiting both your economic performance and your reputation. With GMP, you can :

  • Ensure the quality and safety of your products by preventing defects, contamination, falsifications and labelling errors, thus avoiding risks to consumer health, complaints, product recalls and penalties.
  • Comply with the regulations of your sector, respecting national and international standards such as the ISO 22716 standard for cosmetics or the directive 2003/94/EC for medicines for human use.
  • Strengthen your competitiveness in the market by improving the confidence and satisfaction of your customers, reducing the costs related to non-conformities, optimizing the use of resources and opening the doors to new markets.

Investing in GMP is therefore a strategic approach to differentiate yourself from the competition and ensure the sustainability of your business.

Who is GMP good manufacturing practice for ?

Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) target all stakeholders in the production of industrial goods that can affect the health and safety of users. They mainly apply to the following areas :

  • Pharmaceutical sector : GMP is essential for companies producing drugs for humans or animals, including drugs in the testing phase. They are governed by Directive 2003/94/EC and the European GMP guide, with the French National Agency for the Safety of Medicinal Products and Health Products (ANSM) as the supervisory authority.
  • Cosmetics sector : Recommended for manufacturers of cosmetic products (creams, shampoos, make-up, etc.), GMP follow the ISO 22716 standard and the European cosmetic regulation 1223/2009. Supervision is provided by the Directorate-General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Prevention (DGCCRF) in France.
  • Agri-food sector : Also recommended, GMPs in this sector concern the production of food and beverages, including ready meals and cheeses, guided by the Codex Alimentarius and European legislation on hygiene. They are under the aegis of the General Directorate of Food (DGAL) in France.

Thus, GMPs adapt to the specificities of each sector by ensuring a common basis of quality and safety. They are intended for any establishment involved in industrial production, regardless of its size or its public, private, local or international character.

What are the organizations that can put in place good GMP manufacturing practices for you ?

To implement good manufacturing practices (GMP) within your company, several specialized organizations are at your disposal. They play a key role in helping you understand the regulations of your sector, prepare your necessary documents, train your teams, conduct audits and obtain GMP certification. Let us look at some of these organizations :

Certification bodies

Certification bodies assess whether your quality management complies with GMP standards and issue a certificate validating compliance with regulatory requirements while ensuring product quality and safety. Well-known organisations include Bureau Veritas, SGS and TÜV SÜD. You have the opportunity to choose the organization that best aligns with your needs and budget.

Counselling agencies

Specialized entities, consulting organizations guide you in the implementation of GMP. With their expertise in product quality and safety, they advise you on your strategy, the development of your documents, the optimization of your procedures, the training of your team and the preparation for audits. Several choices are available to you in this field, among which Qualitiso, Pharmaspecific, or A3P, according to your objectives and your field of activity.

Training organisations

The training providers offer you educational programs adapted to the specificities of GMP, to improve the expertise and knowledge of your employees on standards, standards and processes. Whether through theoretical or practical sessions, in presence or remotely, on topics such as validation, hygiene, document management or audits, entities such as Formatis Afnor or LNE are present. You have the opportunity to choose the training organization in line with your requirements and your required levels.

What are the essential steps to implement good GMP manufacturing practices ?

To successfully integrate good manufacturing practices (GMP) into your company, a structured approach involving all employees is essential. Here are the key steps to make your GMP project a success :

1. Analyze the current situation

This fundamental step is to evaluate your current quality management system, identifying strengths, areas for improvement, opportunities and potential risks. It is also essential to assess the degree of compliance of your products, processes, equipment, facilities, personnel and documentation with GMP standards and regulations specific to your field. Analytical tools such as SWOT, 5M or PDCA can be useful.

2. Define objectives and action plan

The second phase involves setting concrete objectives related to the quality and safety of your products and determining performance indicators to measure improvements. It is then necessary to concoct a detailed action plan, listing the measures to be undertaken, the persons responsible for their implementation, the expected deadlines, as well as the necessary resources and equipment. SMART, GANTT or RACI methodologies can facilitate this approach.

3. Train and educate staff

It is necessary to train and educate your team on GMP principles, standards and procedures. This step aims to improve the qualifications and knowledge of your employees while actively engaging them in the quality process. Organize training tailored to different professional profiles within your organization and launch awareness campaigns to promote best practices. Collaboration with specialized training institutions can be beneficial.

4. Write and validate documentation

Writing and validating GMP documentation is the fourth step. This involves formalizing the various procedures, work instructions, specifications, records and reports that frame the production and quality control of your products. Ensure that your documents comply with the legal and normative requirements of GMP and that they are approved by the competent authorities. The use of document templates and document management systems can facilitate this process.

5. Implement and control processes

The fifth step is essential to guarantee the quality of your products and involves the application and rigorous monitoring of manufacturing and control procedures, in accordance with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). This step requires special attention to the conformity of your raw materials, equipment, premises, personnel and documentation with the established specifications. In addition, you must ensure the implementation of effective traceability and recall systems.

It is also important to conduct audits, both internal and external, to confirm compliance with GMPs and to initiate corrective and preventive measures in response to any non-conformities. To carry out this step, it may be wise to seek the help of specialized certification or advisory bodies.

How much does it cost to implement good GMP manufacturing practices ?

The implementation of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) in a company involves costs influenced by various elements, including the size and sector of the company, the degree of compliance required, the types of investments required and certification organizations to contact. Since there is no standard tariff for GMP certification, the total cost can be assessed based on the following aspects :

  • Cost of training : This cost relates to staff awareness of GMP fundamentals, standards and practices. It varies according to the number of participants, their level of competence, the duration and format of training (in person or remotely) and can range from a few hundred to several thousand euros per participant.
  • Documentation cost : This cost covers the creation, validation and management of all necessary GMP documents. It depends on the quantity and complexity of the documents, the resources allocated as well as the tools and software used, ranging from a few thousand to tens of thousands of euros.
  • Cost of implementation : Under the expenses associated with adapting production and control processes to GMP standards, this cost varies according to infrastructure investments, equipment and raw materials and can range from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of euros.
  • Certification cost : This cost includes the evaluation of your quality management system by a certified organization, varying according to the field, scope, duration and frequency of audits. It can range from a few thousand to several tens of thousands of euros.

The overall cost of integrating GMP into your business can range from tens of thousands to millions of euros, depending on the case. It is important to consider GMP as an advantageous investment to ensure product quality and safety, meet legal requirements and enhance competitiveness in the market.