N.C. Division of Pollution Prevention and Environmental Assistance
EMS and Pork Production Tools

Environmental Management Systems for Pork Producers

4.4.6 Operational Control

Instructions for activities associated with the significant aspects are to be communicated to all relevant personnel. These instructions provide directions to employees on how to perform various activities and also identify, plan and manage the farm's operations. Instructions should tell employees “what to do” and “how to do it” to ensure and enhance environmental protection and to meet legal requirements. Operational controls ensure that the farm’s activities are in line with its policy, objectives and targets and are consistent with environmental regulations. 

Instructions may include:

  • Standard operating procedures (SOPs) or work instructions that address specific activities that help control or manage the significant aspects. 

  • Checklists or forms, such as a weekly inspection checklist for a waste storage area. The checklist may include items such as evidence of leaks, cracks in storage containers, etc. 

  • Signs, such as a “cardboard only” sign on a dumpster.

Step 1

Determine if additional operational controls are necessary by asking the question: “If no operational control is present, could negative environmental aspects and impacts occur?”  Develop new controls as needed.

It is recommended that producers develop a process for providing information on the farm's EMS and emergency contact protocols to non-farm personnel such as visitors, contractors and delivery personnel. This may be as simple as posting a notice in a visible location outside the farm office.

See the link below to access example SOPs and work instructions for numerous farm operations. Some of these examples include Spanish translations and/or instructional photos to assist with the instructions. These examples can be downloaded and customized for your farm. 

Step 2

Write a procedure that identifies the personnel responsible for developing and reviewing operating procedures. This is often the management representative or the EMS coordinator.

See the link below for an example of an operational control procedure.

  • Operational Control Procedure

    (This procedure can be downloaded and customized by replacing the red highlighted areas with the specifics for your farm. You can incorporate your procedure for this element within your EMS manual or maintain it as a separate document. A small farm may decide to incorporate language within the manual that addresses this element as opposed to having separate documents.)