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LRQA is aware that the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) steering committee has suspended International Featured Standards (IFS) for a three-month period beginning on 8 December 2022.

GFSI brings together 42 retailers and manufacturers from across the Consumer Goods Forum membership and extended food safety community to oversee food safety standards for businesses. IFS Food is a GFSI-recognized standard for certifying the safety and quality of food products and production processes.

As part of the GFSI governance rules, IFS has a right to appeal this decision, but the decision to suspend IFS will remain in effect unless and until any appeal is successful.

At LRQA, we remain focused on supporting our clients with all available information during this temporary disruption. All IFS certificates are still valid, and retailers and wholesalers from the IFS network have been informed that these certificates will continue to be recognized during the GFSI suspension.

Audits carried out during the suspension period, however, will not be GFSI-recognized, and certified companies should check with their customers what is acceptable for them.

Where LRQA clients are impacted, we advise you to consult the below resources, including the FAQ document issued by GFSI and the publication in IFS website. Please note, as a food safety specialist, LRQA is also able to provide alternative GFSI recognized assessments should you require – including FSSC 22000, BRCGS and SQF.

GFSI Steering Committee Sanctions International Featured Standards (IFS) 

IFS Database - Important Notification about GFSI suspension 

If you cannot find answers to your specific questions in the FAQs linked above, please reach out to your usual LRQA contact to discuss your query.