We are excited to announce that we can now offer the BRCGS Global Standard for Storage and Distribution certification as part of our food/agri-food portfolio.
This standard complements the suite of BRCGS Global Standards covering the production of food, packaging and consumer products. This Standard allows the chain of product certification to be completed, from primary processor to manufacturer, and from manufacturer to retailer (or food service company in the case of food).
Issue 2 of this Standard was developed by a multi-stakeholder group including retailers, food service companies, industry trade associations, independent experts and certification bodies, and builds upon the experience from the previous Standard. It has been designed to reflect best practice and facilitate a process of continuous improvement through well-designed risk-based product safety management systems. The objective is to ensure that the quality
and safety of products during their storage and distribution are maintained, and that customer confidence is upheld through audit and certification.
Principles of the Standard
A business must have a full understanding of the products stored and distributed and have systems in place
to identify and control hazards significant to the safety, quality and legality of the products. The requirements of the Standard in Section Ill are divided into eight subsections with subsections 1 to 3 setting out the key principles of the Standard, and the later subsections focusing on more specific requirements of particular aspects of the operation.
- Senior management commitment Within storage and distribution businesses, the safety, legality and quality of the products handled must be seen as a cross-functional responsibility, including activities of many departments using different skills and expertise in the organisation. Effective adoption of the principles of this Standard extends beyond the responsibility of a single individual and must be wholly supported by the full management team.The starting point for effective implementation of the Standard is the commitment of senior management to the development of an all-encompassing policy to guide the activities which collectively assure that products are stored and distributed in a way that maintains their quality, safety and legality.
- A risk-based system - The Standard requires an evaluation of the risks to the products during their handling, storage and distribution. The hazard and risk analysis process defined in the Standard should enable potential risks to be identified and controlled either through existing programmes such as pest control (prerequisite programmes) or by the introduction of specific controls. An effective hazard and risk analysis provides the basis for the management system.
- Quality management system and suitable operating conditions - The Standard requires the development of a documented quality management system which will provide the structure to enable the management policies and results of the risk assessment to be implemented consistently, and audited and reviewed to encourage continuous improvement.
Benefits of Using the Standard
Adoption, use and certification to the Standard provides a number of benefits in operations, customer relations and marketing.
Further benefits include:
- International recognition which provides a report and certification that can be accepted by customers in place of their own audits- reducing time and cost.
- A comprehensive scope, covering areas of quality, hygiene and product safety, providing a benchmark for best practice in storage and distribution industries.
- Effective adoption of the standard can reduce damage, waste and, therefore, costs to the business
- It forms the basis for accredited audits providing greater credibility and recognition when certification is achieved
- Certificated sites may appear on the BRCGS public directory allowing recognition of their achievements and the use of a logo for marketing purposes
- It addresses part of the 'due diligence' requirements of both the certificated company and the customers using their service.
- Ongoing surveillance and follow-up corrective actions after an audit help to ensure that a self-improving quality, hygiene and product safety system is established.