GFSI Committee Sanctions International Featured Standards IFS

The suspension decision impacts certificates linked to audits which take place from the first date of the GFSI suspension decision, i.e. 8th December 2022, until the date when announces that is reinstated.

Questions in result of the suspension

  1. I am currently certified against one or several of the IFS certification programmes recognised by GFSI. What do I need to do? You do not need to take any action. The GFSI recognition of any current certificate that your site holds remains valid until the expiration date of the certificate.
  2. I am in the process of being certified, or I am in the process of renewing my certification against one or several of the IFS certification programmes recognised by GFSI. What do I need to do? Certificates issued and linked to an carried out during the suspension period for IFS will not be GFSI-recognised. Please refer to your agreements and liaise with your customers to evaluate what is acceptable to them as it relates to their for GFSI-recognised certification
    programmes. The complete list of GFSI-recognised certification programmes is available at this link.
  3. I have not yet begun my certification process. What should I do? Refers to the answer in Question 2.
  4. I am a that is sourcing or from an that is certified by IFS and who wishes to rely on GFSI-recognised certification programmes only. What does this mean for me? GFSI recognition is still valid for all certificates linked to audits carried out before the date of the suspension decision, i.e. before 8th December 2022 and until the expiration date of the certificates issued by the CPO. Where GFSI decides to suspend the recognition status of a given CPO, the decision applies to all certificates linked to a certification audit carried out during the suspension timeframe. This means that certificates issued for audits which take place between the date of suspension and any date of reinstatement will not have been issued against a GFSI-recognised programme. For , with a suspension decision effective from 8th December 2022 for IFS and if IFS is reinstated as a GFSI-recognised CPO on 8th March 2023, the certificates issued for certification audits carried out between 8th December 2022 and 8th March 2023 will not have been issued against a GFSI-recognised programme.
  5. I am a Certification Body; can I continue to issue certificates against IFS certification programmes? YES, certification audits may still be offered. However, those certificates will not be considered to have been issued against a GFSI-recognised programme. Where the certification audit was completed prior to the date of the suspension decision, i.e. 8th December 2022, the corresponding certificate will be considered to have been issued against a GFSI-recognised programme. Please monitor announcements on the GFSI to check for updates on this matter.

GFSI Committee Sanctions conclusion

All and all. IFS – Featured Standards suspended. Hopefully, all agreed and (un)planned IFS certification activities will still take place. It’s operationally impossible to postpone all audits for the next 3 months. It’s time for a big reality check in the Food Industry. We need real-time food assurance in the Food Supply Chain, and we need an extra option to guarantee trust and transparency. At the moment, the agreements between Food can be really harmed by theoretical and technical issues between scheme owners. GFSI recognition is still valid for all certificates linked to audits carried out prior to the date of the suspension decision, i.e. before 8th December 2022 and until the expiration date of the certificates issued by the CPO. Certificates issued and linked to an audit carried out during the suspension period for IFS will not be GFSI-recognised.

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