Law Review

TQCSI RULES OF CERTIFICATION FOR FSSC 22000

INTRODUCTION 

These ‘TQCSI Rules of Certification for FSSC 22000’ have been developed in accordance with the policies and procedures of The Foundation for Food Safety Certification and compliment the ‘TQCSI Rules of Certification’.  TQCSI clients certified against FSSC 22000 are expected to comply with, both, the ‘TQCSI Rules of Certification’ and these ‘TQCSI Rules of Certification for FSSC 22000’.

SCOPE

TQCSI provides independent, third party auditing and certification of management systems operated by clients seeking compliance to FSSC 22000 and other standards.

CONFIDENTIALITY

A requirement of the FSSC 22000 Scheme is for TQCSI to share client information concerning certified clients with the Scheme owners, The Foundation and, as required and when appropriate, with governmental authorities.

GENERAL CONDITIONS

In addition to the General Conditions described in the TQCSI Rules of Certification, each FSSC 22000 client must comply with the following:

  • One of the two surveillance audits in any certification cycle is to be unannounced. Should the certified client refuse entry to the audit team, the client will be liable for all costs involved. In the event the client refuses to participate in the unannounced audit, certification will be immediately suspended and TQCSI will cancel certification if the unannounced audit is not conducted within six months.

  • Only those activities of the client determined by TQCSI, including those relevant departments and sites, are to be covered under the scope of certification.

  • The client is to inform TQCSI within three working days of any significant changes which may affect the management system fulfilling requirements of FSSC 22000 or which require extension or changes to the scope of certification, including legal, commercial, organisational status or ownership; organisation and management (eg key managerial, decision making or technical staff); organisational name, contact address and site details; scope of operations and product categories covered by the management system, including multiple sites; management system and/or processes; or any other change that renders the information on the certificate inaccurate. TQCSI will determine the action required to maintain confidence that the management system meets the requirements of the Standard or, in the case of an extension to scope, will decide whether or not extension may be granted. The client is required to seek TQCSI’s advice in cases where there is doubt over the significance of a change.

  • TQCSI will need to conduct a site visit to examine the consequences and determine any audit activities necessary.

  • The client is to inform TQCSI immediately of any serious events that may impact food safety, the integrity of certification and activities which may have implications on the status of the organisation in the FSSC 22000 Register. A serious event may include:

  • legal proceedings, a legal notice of required action from a government authority for a breach of legislation or regulations (eg food safety breach);

  • events which may not necessarily be a breach of legislation or regulations but are considered serious, including public food safety events (eg a food recall);

  • where the management system fails to detect and control compromised product, the client is to take immediate action to recall the product from the market and inform TQCSI. TQCSI will assess corrective action taken following the recall, determine any consequences to maintain certification and inform the Foundation of recalls which affect the integrity of the Scheme;

  • major threats to business continuity and certification integrity such as war, strike, riot, political instability, geopolitical tension, terrorism, crime, pandemic, an earthquake, fire, flood, tsunami other natural or man-made disasters or unforeseeable force (TQCSI will then take appropriate steps to assess the situation and take any appropriate action, including additional verification activities.

  • The issue of a Certificate of Registration in no way implies that the client’s product or service is approved by JAS-ANZ or any government department.

  • Auditors may occasionally be accompanied by TQCSI, JAS-ANZ or The Foundation witness assessors for monitoring of TQCSI processes. This will not incur any cost to the client nor impede the scheduled audit in any manner.

AUDIT FINDINGS

Three types of nonconformities are relevant to FSSC 22000 certification as follows:

  • Minor Nonconformity - a variation from the FSSC 22000 Scheme’s requirements or the client’s own management system’s requirements but which does not affect the capability of the management system to achieve the intended result. A proposed corrective action plan and evidence of correction taken is to be forwarded to TQCSI for review and approval within 30 days following the audit. If the corrective action plan and evidence of correction is not submitted and approved within 3 months, certification will be suspended. Once approved, corrective action is to be completed within the agreed timeframe and
    will be reviewed at the next scheduled audit.

  • Major Nonconformity – a variation from the FSSC 22000 Scheme’s requirements or the client’s own management system’s requirements and which affects the capability of the management system to achieve the intended result. An investigation into what caused the issue and what risks resulted is to be undertaken by the client and the results with a proposed corrective action plan are to be forwarded to TQCSI for review and approval. A Follow-Up Audit is then to be conducted within 28 calendar days following the audit, closing the major nonconformity. If the major nonconformity is not closed within 28 days following the audit, certification will be suspended.

  • Critical Nonconformity - an issue which directly impacts on food safety or when the integrity of certification or legal compliance is jeopardised. Certification will be immediately suspended for up to six months. An investigation into what caused the issue and what risks resulted is to be undertaken by the client and the results with a proposed corrective action plan are to be forwarded to TQCSI within 14 days following the audit. A Follow-Up Audit will then need to be conducted between 6 weeks and six months following the audit to verify the closure of the critical nonconformity. The Follow-Up Audit will be a full on-site audit of at least 1 day. Certification will be restored following a successful Follow-Up Audit. If the critical nonconformity is not closed within six months, certification will be cancelled. Should the critical nonconformity be raised during a Stage 2 Audit, another Stage 1 and Stage 2 Audit will need to be conducted.

  • Further advice on TQCSI’s policy for the raising of minor, major and critical nonconformities is contained in the FSSC 22000 System Policy at ISO Systems Policy on the TQCSI website.

CERTIFICATION MARK

The TQCSI Certification Mark is only to be used in reference to the site for which it applies and is not to be affixed directly to the product, product packaging, including outer packaging, or be used in such a way that product certification may be implied. This applies equally to the JAS-ANZ Accreditation Mark and the FSSC 22000 logo.

Clients may not use a statement on product packaging or in accompanying information to state they have a certified management system for FSSC 22000 certification.

Use of the relevant TQCSI Certification Mark is encouraged on stationery, literature and publicity material. Similarly, the JAS-ANZ Accreditation Mark may be used by clients but only when it is accompanied by the TQCSI Certification Mark. The same applies to the use of the FSSC logo by certified clients. When more than one of these Marks is used, they are to be proportioned such that neither Mark takes precedence over the other. When using the TQCSI Certification Mark on letterhead, stationery, literature or publicity material, it is to be accompanied by the Registration Number and Standard to which certification applies. The TQCSI Certification Mark, JAS-ANZ Accreditation Mark and FSSC 22000 logo are available through the local TQCSI Office.

The TQCSI and JAS-ANZ Marks, and FSSC 22000 logo, may be reproduced in a single colour to conform to existing company stationery or newspaper and magazine article colouring, however it cannot be reproduced in a combination of colours from that specified by TQCSI. The Mark must also be reproduced clearly distinguishable and legibly, and is not to be used in any misleading manner.

FEES

The annual registration fee referred to on the Trade Mark Licence Agreement (Certification Contract) for FSSC 22000 clients will also include the fee payable to The Foundation.

LIST OF CERTIFIED ORGANISATIONS

TQCSI will maintain a register of all clients who have achieved certification and maintain that certification through TQCSI. The Register, known as the List of Certified Organisations, will be made available to thepublic through the TQCSI website (www.tqcsi.com). Additionally, all clients registered with TQCSI under aprogram for which TQCSI is accredited will automatically be included in the JAS-ANZ Register (www.jasanz.org) and the QualityTrade website (www.qualitytrade.com), as appropriate. FSSC 22000 clients will be also registered in The Foundation’s FSSC 22000 database of certified organisations. All FSSC Scheme documents and the list of certified organisations are available at www.fssc22000.com.

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