How to Get GFSI Certification

The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) is a private organization, established and managed by the international trade association, the Consumer Goods Forum under Belgian law in May 2000. The GFSI maintains a scheme to benchmark food safety standards for manufacturers as well as farm assurance standards.

The Global Food Safety Initiative is a business driven initiative for the continuous improvement of food safety management systems to ensure confidence in the delivery of safe food to consumers worldwide. GFSI provides a platform for collaboration between some of the world’s leading food safety experts from retailer, manufacturer and food service companies, service providers associated with the food supply chain, international organizations, academia and government.

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Certification to a GFSI recognized scheme is achieved through a successful third party audit against any of the schemes that have been recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative.

GFSI Objectives

  • Reduce food safety risks by delivering equivalence and convergence between effective food safety management systems
  • Manage cost in the global food system by eliminating redundancy and improving operational efficiency
  • Develop competencies and capacity building in food safety to create consistent and effective global food systems
  • Provide a unique international stakeholder platform for collaboration, knowledge exchange and networking.

All of CCC Ingredients require GFSI certification. The company supplies food ingredients, pharmaceutical ingredients, dairy ingredients, personal care ingredients and other types of chemicals with strict compliance to latest food safety rules.

You can contact the company and get important information about the standards of GFSI in Canada.

To become certified to a GFSI recognized scheme:

  • Identify the scopes based on the type of activity of your operation.
  • Contact the GFSI recognized scheme owners that cover your scope to determine which of the schemes fits best with the type of activities that your company carries out.
  • Request from the selected scheme owner an approved list of certification bodies that can carry out audits against their schemes, or
  • Contact your preferred certification body and find out against which GFSI recognized scheme they can offer an audit.

To become certified to a GFSI recognized scheme you should also consider the below aspects:

  • Get a copy of the selected scheme. Go through the requirements and identify any gaps in your food safety management system between where you are and where you need to be. Some service providers offer consulting services and might guide you along the way.
  • There is a cost to achieving and maintaining certification. Make sure that you have an adequate budget.
  • Decide on your Certification Body. The scheme owner will have a list of those that operate in your scope and region. Your Certification Body will not be able to advise you on how to achieve certification. Their role is to undertake an audit and measure your system against the scheme requirements.
  • Meet with your technical service provider. Agree on a work plan to take you towards certification.
  • Build your capability by attending an introductory training course. These are run by the schemes.
  • A pre-audit may benefit your company. They provide you with a mechanism that helps you work out whether you are prepared for an official audit. Your technical service provider will be able to advise on this.
  • Once certified, maintain your quality management system in line with the requirements of the scheme.