19 December, 2012
Ashley Tait

Ashley Tait has a wealth of experience dealing with processors in need of technical expertise and assistance.  Recently appointed as SFQC’s Head of Processing, Ashley is on hand to offer advice and support to our customers.

With BRC a growing part of SFQC’s certification service, Ashley has taken some time to answer some frequently asked questions which will hopefully prove useful to readers who are already accredited, as well as those who are thinking about joining BRC.

What benefits does having BRC accreditation bring to a company?

“Third party certification to BRC standard helps manufacturers, brand owners and retailers fulfil their legal obligation and safeguard consumers.  BRC Certification is a pre-condition for suppliers to UK retailers.”

Some businesses feel they are too small for BRC accreditation; does a company need to be a certain size for it to benefit them?

“There is no size limit for BRC accreditation; it is all to do with who the factory’s customers are.”

In terms of the service SFQC offers, are customers able to combine their audits if they require certification for different areas?

“Absolutely, audits can be combined with QMS, Beef Labelling, Red Tractor and Organic all depending on the customer requirements. These take a little longer to get through but are quicker and more hassle free than having lots of individual audits dotted around.”

How long does a BRC audit normally take?

“Typically now two days. BRC have introduced a calculator which determines the amount of time spent on the factory floor. This is calculated by size of premises in square meters and the number of employees.”

Can SFQC help with pre-audit staff training or advice?

"This has now been reinforced within SFQC with the likes of SFQC Assist and my own role as Head of Processing. There are plans in place to offer even more support to our customers in 2013.”

From your experience is there one common fault which leads to a major BRC non-compliance?

“The majority of non-conformances within BRC Issue 6 are factory based; this is due to the extended presence of the auditor on the factory floor. The chart below highlights some of the common non-conformance areas from recent SFQC audits (September-December 2012).”

“As you can see, Section 4 Site Standards provides the greatest instances of non-conformances with Clause 4.11.1 House keeping and Hygiene being the most common area of concern.”

For more information on how SFQC can help you gain the processing accreditation you require contact us today.

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