Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
What types of GFSI Food Safety Auditing Schemes does CCI Offer?
CCI is accredited through ANSI to conduct all PrimusGFS available audits and the Integrated Farm Assurance (IFA) and Harmonized Produce Safety Standard (HPSS) GlobalG.A.P. audits.
What other Auditing Services does CCI offer?
CCI is approved to conduct the Primus Standard and Standard Harmonized audits as well as OPMA.
How do I know what audit scheme I should apply for?
Currently, most GFSI level schemes (e.g., PGFS, GlobalGAP) are required and accepted within the food industry. Big box stores (e.g., Walmart, Costco) require these from their clients. Often times the decision is buyer or customer driven and many accept non-GFSI level audits.
How should I prepare for a food safety audit?
With any auditing scheme, the first thing would be to review the requirements of the scheme you are applying for and determining if your current systems align with them. Many organizations have a food safety coordinator or require assistance of an expert to help prepare for an audit. Having upper management support in food safety is a must.
Where can I find copies of the required documents per audit?
For GFSI level audits, current normative documents (e.g., standards, guidelines, checklists, etc.) may be found on the schemes website. For PrimusGFS documents, visit www.primusgfs.com. GlobalGAP documents, visit. www.globalgap.org. For non-GFSI documents, please contact CCI.
Does CCI provide Pre-Assessment Audits?
Yes, CCI offers on-site Pre-Assessments which consist of assessing the organization's readiness toward an on-site certification audit. The pre-assessment is not graded and does not recommend courses of action, techniques or processes which can be construed as assisting the client in overcoming an obstacle. Pre-assessment assessors may suggest ideas but in no way should the assessment or suggestions construe a solution to achieving a standard. Pre-assessments are a good idea to those new to a GFSI level audit.
What is the price for a Food Safety Audit?
CCI keeps its fees comparable to other Certification Bodies and are a function of many things. Each individual scheme has its own pricing based on the robustness of the audit. Please contact CCI for an estimate.
How long can I expect and audit to last?
CCI follows the guidance and requirements per each individual scheme on how long an audit shall last. It is our goal to never exceed the required time, but certain circumstances (e.g., how prepared you are, size of operation) may prolong the audit.
Can the on-site auditor tell me how to fix a deficiency that is found during the audit?
No, as every site is different and may require specific ways to remedy the problem. However, the auditor is able to explain the standard to you and this could assist with you understanding of what is required.
What if I disagree with the auditor’s findings or interpretation of the standard?
It is best to speak with the auditor at the time of your concern and express your opinion. If you feel it is not adequately addressed, after the audit has been completed, you may contact CCI’s Scheme Manager to discuss your concerns. CCI also has an appeal process and other resources to assist you with problem resolution. Never be afraid to ask a question!
Can you briefly go over what takes places on the day of the audit?
Once your audit is scheduled, the auditor will provide you with an Audit Day Plan. The auditor will begin with an opening meeting to go over this plan and answer any questions. Following the opening meeting, typically an auditor starts with the documentation review, followed by the operation walk through or field visit. The auditor will require some time to write up the non-conformance summary and will present it to you during the closing meeting. A working lunch is preferred, but not required.