food safety audit and assessment

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  • Best Practice Approaches to Ensure you are Ready for Food Safety Audit and Assessment

    Bill McBride

    Chairman, GFSI Auditor Competence Scheme Committee

    FHA 2014 International Conference Singapore, April 8th, 2014

  • Bill McBride - Who am I?

    Based in Sydney, Australia

    Chairman of the GFSI Auditor Competence Scheme Committee

    Asia Pacific Representative for SQF program

    CEO of Foodlink Management Services since 1998

    Forty years experience in food and beverage manufacturing, quality management, food safety systems.

  • 1. Food Safety Audits the good, the bad, and the ugly

    2. Understanding the jargon ISO, HACCP, GFSI, SQF, BRC, FSSC, certification, accreditation, etc

    3. Selecting the right standard for your industry, customer, and business

    4. Being audit ready what does it mean?

    5. General discussion. Answering your questions. Where do you get more information?

    Masterclass Agenda

  • 1. Food Safety Audits:

    the good, the bad, and

    the ugly

    Hi, Im from the audit agency, and Im here to

    help you.

  • Criticism of Food Safety Auditing

    There is a long and spectacular history of food safety failures involving third-party audits (and inspections). Many

    foodborne illness outbreaks have been linked to farms, processors and retailers that went through some form of


    the system of third-party audits can work, but when it

    fails, it fails spectacularly.

    Source: Bites ;

    Doug Powell


  • To many food businesses, food auditors are the lowest form of life, parasites feeding off businesses, and often as much of a

    food safety hazard as anything identified within their products or processes.

    Unfortunately some food safety auditors reinforce this image by demonstrating their technical skills without any regard for a requirement for customer service or communication skills.

    The Reality of Multiple Audits An Industry Perspective

    Presentation to the 8th Australian HACCP Conference,

    September, 2001


  • The farm whose cantaloupes were behind the nation's (USA) deadliest food-borne illness outbreak in 25 years got a top score 96% from a firm auditing the plant's sanitation practices six days before the first person fell ill.

    The Listeria outbreak that killed 33 people and sickened over 100 people began on July 31, 2011. The site was audited July 25, 2011.

    The rating has once again helped raise questions about the credibility of so-called third-party audits.

    Source: Elizabeth Weise, USA Today,

    Oct 20, 2011 7

  • Seattle food safety lawyer Bill Marler, whose firm is representing the families of nine people who died in the outbreak and 26 who were sickened, said he has never sued a third-party audit firm but is thinking this might be the time to do it.

    The auditing companies not only get paid by the people they're auditing, but insulate themselves from liability through their contracts, Marler said.

    "Basically (the contracts) say something to the effect that, 'Yeah, we're auditing you, but we're not responsible if something goes bad.'"

    Source: Elizabeth Weise, USA Today,

    Oct 20, 2011 8

  • The Auditors Defence?

    An audit is only a snap-shot in time

    The supplier is responsible for food safety, not the auditor or audit agency

    The auditor is not there all the time

    We will never be rid of all these problems

    We dont have enough trained auditors

    Were doing our best

    I was just following the checklist

    Doug Powell (et. al.) exaggerate. Theyre over-dramatizing and muck raising.


  • What is the Role of the Food Safety Audit?

    To guarantee product safety?

    To issue a certificate?

    To confirm that a supplier is complying with an external standard (e.g., SQF, BRC, FSSC)?

    To provide a supplier with access to one or more retail markets?

    To verify that a suppliers food safety management system is effectively implemented and capable of providing safe food?

  • Audit Definitions (ISO)


    Systematic, independent, and documented process for obtaining audit evidence, and evaluating it objectively to determine the extent to which the audit criteria are fulfilled

    Audit criteria

    Set of policies, procedures, or requirements used as reference against which audit criteria is compared.

    Audit evidence

    Records, statements of fact, which are relevant to the audit criteria, and verifiable

    Source: ISO 19011: 2011

  • Audit Definitions (GFSI)

    A systematic and functionally independent examination to determine whether activities and related results comply with a conforming scheme, whereby all the elements of this scheme should be covered by reviewing the suppliers manual and related procedures, together with an evaluation of the production facilities.

    GFSI Guidance Document,

    version 6.2

  • Audit Definition (SQF)

    A systematic and independent examination of a suppliers SQF System by an SQF auditor to determine whether food safety, hygiene and management activities are undertaken in accordance with that system documentation and comply with the requirements of the SQF Code, as appropriate, and to verify whether these arrangements are implemented effectively.

    Source: SQF Code, edition 7.2

    Appendix 2: Glossary


  • Common Themes in Audit Definitions

    Systematic, independent, and objective

    Based on a reference standard or set of documents

    Confirm compliance and non-compliance

    Confirm suppliers commitment to

    comply with the requirements of the relevant standard

    comply with applicable food legislation, and

    produce safe food

  • Incidence of Foodborne Illness (Global)

    In 2005 alone 1.8 million people died from diarrhoeal diseases. A great proportion of these cases can be attributed to contamination of food and drinking water. Additionally, diarrhoea is a major cause of malnutrition in infants and young children

    In industrialized countries, the percentage of the population suffering from foodborne diseases each year has been reported to be up to 30%

    While most foodborne diseases are sporadic and often not reported, foodborne disease outbreaks may take on massive proportions

    Major foodborne illness causing agents:

    Source: Fact Sheet No 237 on Foodborne Illness, WHO 2007

    Salmonella Naturally occurring toxins

    Campylobacter Unconventional agents (eg agent causing BSE)

    enterohamorrhagic E.coli Persistant organic pollutions

    Vibrio cholerae Heavy metals

    Listeria monocytogenes

  • Incidence of Foodborne Illness (US)

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that each year roughly 1 in 6 Americans (or 48 million people) gets sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die of foodborne diseases.

    Americas report card for food safety that tracks trends, some foodborne illnesses have dropped significantly, but infections caused by one of the most common germsSalmonellahave not declined (Trends in Foodborne Illness, 1996 2010)

    Food contamination creates an enormous social and economic burden. In the US, diseases caused by the major pathogens alone are estimated to have cost up to US $35 billion annually (1997) in medical costs and lost productivity. (WHO, 2007)

    Major causes of foodborne illness in US:

    Norovirus 5,461,731 cases

    Salmonella spp 1,027,561 cases

    Clostridium perfringens 965,958

    Campylobacter 845,024

    Source: Foodborne illness

    acquired in the United State,

    Scallan, Angolo, Tauxe,

    Widdowson (2011)

  • 17

  • What is the Role of the Food Safety Audit?

    To guarantee product safety?

    To issue a certificate?

    To confirm that a supplier is complying with an external standard (e.g., SQF, BRC, FSSC)?

    To provide a supplier with access to one or more retail markets?

    To verify that a suppliers food safety management system is effectively implemented and capable of providing safe food?

  • Audit Objectives

    Audits are designed to:

    Determine conformity or non-conformity

    Determine effectiveness

    Provide an opportunity to improve

    Meet regulatory requirements

    Permit listing of suppliers on a register


  • Commonality in Audits

    Performed on selected & defined part

    Verify conformance to a standard

    Performed by individuals independent of the area being audited

    Identify non-conformities

    Part of the continuous improvement of the system (Plan/Do/Check/Act)


  • Types of Audits

    First P