May 14/Guelph, Ontario -– Guelph Food Technology Centre (GFTC) has achieved accreditation by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) as a certification body with a current scope to deliver certification to the Safe Quality Food (SQF) and British Retail Consortium (BRC) standards.
Food industry stakeholders, such as retailers and food service providers, are requiring that their suppliers become certified to Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI)-recognized food safety standards such as SQF and BRC. To achieve certification to these standards, it hass become necessary for on-farm and post-farm establishments to work with certification bodies such as GFTC, the center noted in a release. ANSI accreditation assures clients that GFTC’s management system as a certification body is compliant, current and accountable.
GFTC says it is the first organization with a Canadian head office to receive this recognition and certify to the SQF and BRC standards.
“Accreditation marks a further achievement for GFTC in meeting clients’ needs and expanding our services globally to include additional standards that are required by industry, such as SQF 1000 and 2000 as well as BRC,” says Frank Schreurs, vice president of Food Safety and Quality Services at GFTC.
The accreditation means that GFTC’s certification management system is compliant to ISO Guide 65. The process for accreditation includes an extensive review of the certification body’s written policies and documentation as well as an evaluation of auditors in the field. For the last 18 months, GFTC has been auditing to SQF and BRC standards with provisional certification body status but recently, ANSI gave GFTC notice of formal accreditation.
GFTC’s ANSI accreditation comes at a time when GFSI-recognized standards are being considered for incorporation into U.S. legislation as a referencing option for federal regulators. That means being certified to a GFSI-recognized standard may, in the future, improve market access for North American food and beverage companies.
GFTC works with both small companies and multi-national corporations along the supply chain to meet customer and regulatory requirements. On the auditing side, GFTC helps agri-food businesses manage auditing processes and reduce the risk to their brand. GFTC offers a broad range of third-party auditing services including certification to standards such as SQF, BRC and CanadaGAP. GFTC’s global reach paired with experienced auditors in all industry sectors allows for audits along the entire food supply chain.
From the May 24, 2010, Prepared Foods E-dition