Founded in 2003, IFS aim to ensure both comparability and transparency for the consumer throughout the entire supply chain, and that certified companies continue to improve their processes. A Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) recognised standard, IFS Food has been developed with the full and active involvement of certification bodies, retailers, the food industry and food service companies.
IFS Food V7 focuses on three key areas:
Embedding a Food Safety Culture across the organisation
There is an increased importance placed on embedding a deep-rooted food safety culture. Employees who work to drive food safety behaviours are more
likely to produce safe, quality products which help to prevent and detect nonconformities in any process impacting the safety, quality, and legality of products.
A new scoring system to help drive continuous improvement
Continuous improvement is a key feature of IFS standards. This new scoring system provides the opportunity to standardise reports and audit results, giving the customer a clear overview of performance and in turn help drive continuous improvement. The result will be a comprehensive action plan with clear explanations about non-conformities, enabling corrective actions to be put in place and continue striving for
More focus on on-site assessments
The requirements relating to some documentation have been removed or merged, providing more time to focus on the practical elements of the on-site assessment.
Other changes include but are not limited to:
- 15% fewer requirements – streamlining many of the processes to make auditing more efficient
- Clearly structured assessment report with standardised sections
- Every third IFS certification assessment will be unannounced
- A valid Global Location Number (GLN) is now mandatory for suppliers in the European Economic Area (EEA) and the UK
- Additional tools now available to support quality managers of certified companies
LRQA works with over 35,000 clients within the food and beverage sector and recognises that with the increasing globalisation and complexity of supply chains, producing a product or providing a service that complies with customer specifications - verified by a reputable body with a global footprint is critical. Accredited standards, such as IFS Food V7, can help protect businesses brand reputation as well as their customers.