ITU (Good Agricultural Practices) Certificate
The ITU Certificate, known as Good Agricultural Practices, is received by the companies producing in the agricultural sector and the companies packaging the agricultural products produced by these companies.
The Good Agricultural Practices Certification Standard is divided into two modules, individual certification and group certification.
• Individual Certification: Individual certification is applied to the enterprise engaged in agricultural production on agricultural lands under the use of real or legal persons as owners or tenants.
• Group Certification: Group certification is applied to the enterprise engaged in agricultural production on agricultural lands established under the roof of producer organizations or cooperatives, established by contract and under the use of real persons as owner or tenancy.
There are two signature processes in group certification, unlike individual certification. In the first, cooperatives or producer s also sign contracts with producers; in the latter, when the cooperatives apply for the ITU Certificate, they sign a contract with the certification body. In addition, enterprises applying as cooperatives are expected to meet the Quality Management System standards.
The certificate application should be made to a certification body accredited by a domestic or international authority. Good Agricultural Practices certification procedures in Turkey are carried out by certification bodies accredited by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. The ITU Certificate standard has been actively implemented in our country since 2010. ITU Certificate is issued in accordance with GLOBALGAP standards, which is an international inspection and surveillance system in the field of environment and food safety.
Within the scope of the GAP Certificate, only the cultivation of agricultural products is not included. All processes up to the packaged (final) product are covered by the Good Agricultural Practices standard.
Benefits of Good Agricultural Practices
• The product does not contain chemicals, physical and microbiological residues harmful to human health,
• The product is produced without harming the natural balance and without polluting the environment,
• Traceability and sustainability are ensured in production processes,
• The health and well-being of the employees and other living things taking part in the productions are not adversely affected,
• It shows that the productions are made in accordance with both the agricultural legislation of the country where the consumer is located and the agricultural legislation of the country where the production is made.
In addition, the ITU Certificate increases the quality, reliability and value of the product. Products with Good Agricultural Practices certificate are preferred primarily by markets and consumers.
The main topics covered by the ITU Standard are:
• Food safety,
• Worker healty and safety
• Environmental Protection,
• Integrated Pest Control
• Hazard Analysis
• Worker Welfare
Importance of Good Agricultural Practices
Fresh fruit and vegetable exporters of our country experience serious problems in the supply of products abroad due to the residues originating from the chemical inputs used in the products. For this reason, only 3-5% of the fresh and fruit and vegetable products grown in our country can be exported.
Every positive development in the field of Good Agricultural Practices encourages domestic production on behalf of our country and increases the yield. Therefore, exports will increase depending on these developments. Otherwise, it will not be possible to compete in agriculture with EU countries and world countries that have made progress in agriculture.
Good Agricultural Practices Certification Process
The factors to be taken into account in the audits of an enterprise under GAP evaluation are as follows:
• Water resources of production areas,
• Pollution situation around water resources,
• Water quality and existence of sustainable water resources,
• Taking care of plant health,
• Regulation of drug use,
• Soil type in production areas,
• Production conditions of neighboring agricultural lands,
• Crop rotation (fallow / rotation) plan,
The GAP Certificate Standard requires that all stages of the production chain be recorded. This ensures that possible risks are identified in advance and necessary precautions are taken.
There are some criteria that businesses must meet in order to have Good Agricultural Practices certificate in both Individual Certification and Group Certification models.
For the Good Agricultural Practices standard, first of all, the water resources on the agricultural land and the condition of the soil to be planted are examined. r. On top of that, the progress of the next plots is examined as well. It will be used in productions.
After the evaluations are completed, the contract is signed with a certification. Information on water content and analysis from the developing region. Applications made in the group certification (Cooperatives) model are examined according to the preliminary standards of the Quality Management System (QMS) of the cooperation, together with the interview.
Evaluating the certification, visits the production site during inspections and prepares the contract by considering criteria such as the number of those in production, the size and quantity of the production cycle. ITU Certificates, purchased with the signed contract, undertake to produce at affordable prices.
The hardening process, during the inspections, used in the enterprise, fertilizers, seeds, seedlings; Any editing and editing, planning, control the date and site. In addition, analyzes are made for the soils of the lands.
A regulated business operation, such as audits to be completed, positive results of analyzes, and appropriateness of what controls will be built.
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