IFS

International Food Standard

Continually improve your business with the International Food Standard

IFS (International Food Standard) is a unified standard of food’s safety and quality, which is accepted by the Global Food Safety Initiative and developed to test the competence of food manufacturers in terms of food’s safety and quality, at the same time enabling manufacturers to save their time and money.

IFS is intended mainly for the brands of large retail chains, so it is currently used by nine of the top 10 European retail brands, working together to improve and adapt to the market. This standard is applicable to suppliers at all stages of food processing, except when it comes to agricultural production.

The IFS structure is adapted to the ISO 9001 standard and HACCP, and is also based on Good Manufacturing Practice and Good Hygiene Practice.

According to European and national regulations, all manufacturers or traders with branded foods must have an IFS certificate, which, among other things, enables them:

  • Expressing the commitment to delivering safe food of good quality;
  • Easier compliance with legal obligations and regulations;
  • IFS certification reduces the cost of internal and external checks using a single standard;
  • The company’s reputation, brand strength and image of the company are growing;
  • The certification process supports continuous improvement through monitoring and corrective measures.

Also, if you have already started implementing the IFS, we can help you complete the entire process more easily and thus get more benefits offered by the International Food Standard.

STRUCTURE

Each IFS standard has the same basic structure and is divided into two parts: a list of requests (technical checklist) and a check protocol.

1. List of requests (technical check list)

The checklist is different for each standard and contains all the requirements, as well as good practices that must be implemented by the company, if it wants to be certified according to the IFS standard.

The checklist contains about 250 requests, which deal with five basic topics:

  • Responsibility of senior management,
  • Quality management system,
  • Resource management,
  • The production process,
  • Measurement, analysis, improvement.

2. Check protocol

In this specific chapter, the following topics have been processed:

  • The process of auditing or checking, from the initial request of the company until the issuance of the IFS certificate,
  • Evaluation and scoring system;
  • Frequency of check (mostly once a year);
  • Types of verification (initial, verification of certificate renewal and control checks);
  • Selection of the certification body and contracting;
  • Requirements for issuing certificates.
Stage
1
1. Introduction

Find out what the IFS (International Food Standard) really is and what makes it suitable for your business.

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2
2. Implementation

Find out the best way to implement IFS and how our company can help you with this.

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3
3. Certification

Make an independent assessment of the standard implemented and obtain certification for your business.

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4
4. Maintenance

Make sure your system is constantly growing and evolving to deliver the best solutions for your business.

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1. Introduction

IFS is a standard of quality and a standard for food safety, whose main goals are:

• Establishing a common standard with a unique rating system;

• Work with accredited certification bodies and highly qualified and certified appraisers;

• Ensuring comparability and transparency throughout the supply chain;

• Reducing costs and saving time, both to buyers and retail chains.

Regardless of whether you are investing in the IFS standard to improve internal quality food requirements or in response to environmental requirements, implementation of this standard requires good preparation. When implementing IFS, our team of consultants is will help you to familiarize yourself with the requirements of the standard, with a view to its successful implementation.

2. Implementation

When implementing an IFS standard, everyone can develop the solution that best suits him. During the check, the IFS auditor solely checks whether a particular solution works and whether it guarantees the safety of the product.

With the help of the IFS standard, a real image of the company is provided which gives a good basis for starting the system upgrade. This standard leaves a period of 12 months during which the deviations identified during the check must be corrected. In this way, the company has time to develop its own solution that suits its processes.

It turned out that companies that accepted the IFS standard improved customer relationships and improved their competitive position. This is because the production process is structured in a new way, whereby places that can be improved are found.

3. Certification

The main advantage of this standard is trust in IFS certification and checking. IFS is the standard for which it is necessary to renew the certificate, or perform re-examinations every two years.

A secure database of certified organizations provides an insight into the status of each company, its certificate, and a report from its verification. IFS Authorized Certification Bodies are required to enter all verification data, including a verification report and an action plan, into the mentioned database.

4. Maintenance

The implementation of the IFS standard provides guidance on how to continuously improve the quality of food in your organization. The maintenance of the IFS system is carried out by regular consultations by the consultant in order to check that IFS standards are being implemented, the system is being improved and value is being added to your organization.

Popular courses and training for IFS

We use accelerated learning techniques to make sure that you fully understand all the requirements of IFS. This type of training consists of lectures and workshops of interactive parts, which allow you to give your opinion and present your views, practical examples etc. Learn more about IFS training.