What is the BRC Global Food Standard?
BRC Global Food Standard was established in 1996 by the British Retail Consortium in response to the needs of the industry, in order to set the standards for food safety in the supply chain. The first version of the BRC Global Food Standard, which was prepared with food industry experts, was published in 1998. Today, BRC has become a globally recognized third-party certification provider operating in both the food and non-food product categories. BRC officially changed its name to BRCGS in 2020.
BRC Food Safety Standard ensures that the producers comply with the legal requirements by guaranteeing the quality, safety and operational criteria. The BRC Food Safety Standard is seen as a necessity by leading retailers, manufacturers and companies in the food sector in these periods. The BRC Food Safety Standard framework provides global recognition by establishing how to manage food safety, integrity, legality and quality in the food and food additive manufacturing, processing and ultimately packaging industries.
BRC Global Food Standard Applicable Sectors
The BRC Global Food Standard specifies the requirements for company and customer branded products that are produced, processed or packaged. These companies may be manufacturers of the following products:
• Meat, fish, dairy products
• Oils and fats
• Processed, ready or dried foods
• Fruits, vegetables, nuts
• Bakery products
• Desserts and snacks
• Processed foods
• Food producers, their inputs or additives
• Main foods such as fruits and vegetables
• Pet foods produced for pets
BRC Certification covers the warehouse facilities that are under the direct control of the production site management, by being applied to the products manufactured or prepared in the field where the inspection is made.
BRC Global Food Standard Main Topics
Part I Food Safety Management System
It includes introduction and background information on the development and benefits of the BRC Global Food Standard.
Part - II Requirements
It contains the details of the requirements that companies have to comply with in order to gain the right to BRC Certification.
1. Top management commitment
2. Food safety plan – HACCP
3. Food safety and quality management system
4. Facility standards
5. Product control
6. Process control
8. High – risk, high – vigilance and high – attention production risk areas in ambient conditions
9. Requirements for commercial products
Part III Audit Protocol
It contains information about the audit process and the rules for certification. It details different certification programs within the scope of the standard, including logo information and information about the BRC Standard Guide.
Part – IV Management and Control
It defines the management and inspection system related to the management of the certification companies registered for the implementation of the BRC Global Food Standard and the program.
The appendices provide necessary information such as auditor competence, product categories, correction of nonconformities, and glossary.
BRC Global Food Standard and Nonconformity Structure
BRC Global Food Standard; It provides two different inspection options for facilities:
1. The announced inspection, facility and certification firm decides on the inspection dates in advance
2. Unannounced inspection, notification of the inspection date to the facility just before the inspection
The BRC Food Safety System certifies the companies that are entitled to receive certificates in the announced audit program with one of the AA, A, B, C, D certificate degrees according to the number and type of nonconformities. The companies to which the unannounced audit option is applied are given the opportunity to show how competent their quality management systems are, and successful companies are graded as AA+, A+, B+, C+, D+ according to the number and type of nonconformities in the audit.
An objective decision is taken regarding the level, severity and risk of nonconformity determined by the inspector in line with the requirements of the BRC Global Food Standard and is based on the evidence gathered during the inspection and the observations made. It is verified by the management of the certification firm.
Benefits of the BRC Global Food Standard
• Implementation of HACCP or risk-based approaches within the BRC Food Safety System.
• Provide a product handling environment where the risks of contamination of the product are minimized.
• Ensuring the availability of legal and detailed specifications in line with food safety standards and good manufacturing practices for the production of the food product.
• Ensure that their suppliers comply adequately with legal requirements to produce the specified product and have implemented systems for process control.
• Product review