Finding a Qualified Food Co-Packer: Why GFSI Certification Is Critical
Posted By: Karl Wirtz
Posted On: 25th September ‘ 15
GFSI was established by the world’s leading retailers and food manufacturers to standardize international food safety practices. It also provides continuous improvement in food safety management systems to ensure confidence in the delivery of safe food to consumers worldwide.
Held by WG Pro, The BRC Global Standards for Food Safety was the first Standard to be recognised by GFSI. A BRC certification means your food co-packer has undergone extraordinary efforts to develop and embed reliable processes, systems and behaviours in every aspect of their business relating to food production in order to reduce risks to your customers.
BRC Certification Builds Consumer Confidence and Reduces Liability for Brand Owners
Developed and driven by retailers, BRC Global Standards helps build confidence in the food safety industry and sets the standard for good food manufacturing practices. This rigorous certification process helps assure retail buyers and customers that these products are safe.
Aside from the obvious safety benefits, applying the BRC food safety standard has two additional outcomes to brand owners:
- It helps produce food products of consistent quality.
- It supports a ‘due diligence’ defence, should they be subject to prosecution by enforcement agencies.
BRC Certification Protects Against Cross-Contamination Risk
Fighting against cross-contamination starts by sterilizing production lines. But equipment cleanliness is only part of keeping food safe. Employee training programs are key to preventing cross contamination and the spread of allergens from one line to another. A BRC Certified food co-packer will swab the lines when switching between products, ensuring food traces aren’t exchanged.
Stopping allergens from spreading relies largely on having segregated zones for certain products, such as nut-free foods. Employees who work in these secured zones must be restricted from entering other co-packing production areas and vice-versa, unless authorized. At WG Pro, our staff wear distinct uniforms based on their authorized production zone for immediate visual verification.
BRC Certification Demonstrates Traceability, Mitigating the Impact of Recalls
Product recalls are a threat to your brand and to consumer safety. If a product recall is issued, a BRC certified food co-packer can mitigate the recall’s scope.
A co-packer with a BRC certification maintains strict record keeping of product-related information. This includes a particular emphasis on accountability/traceability logs, but is certainly not limited to it. As a GFSI certified organization, WG Pro is always improving processes, systems and training to respond quickly and effectively to potential recalls.
It Shows the Food Co-Packer is Committed to Continuous Improvement
To meet the BRC global standards, a business must not only exhibit its focus on safely handling food, but state a commitment to further develop its safety strategy. By always working toward improvement, co-packagers can address any deficiencies and build on positive practices regarding the ways they handle your food. A company that holds a BRC certificate has proven its ability to preserve the integrity of your products over the long term.
>> With GFSI – BRC Food Safety Certification and a 20-plus year history, WG Pro has built a reputation as a leading food co-packer in the Toronto, Ontario area. Contact us today to learn how we can help meet your business goals.
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