I was at the first ever Global Food Safety Conference 15 years ago and I’m very proud to have been involved from the start. The theme for this year’s Global Food Safety Conference is “The Global Food Safety Vision: Making the Change”, and there are three areas that I hope will be improved and will perhaps take a step forward in Berlin.
Firstly, is to see what we can do to further improve the reliability of certification. I think it should be really high on the agenda; including how can we ensure sufficient resources of auditors and auditor competency. The second issue I’m worried about is small suppliers, because a lot of small suppliers and suppliers in developing and emerging markets cannot meet the GFSI requirements. The GFSI has launched the Global Markets Programme and that’s an absolutely great initiative but I think it’s not yet successful enough. And the third thing is the standardisation and harmonisation of standards and of the auditor competency system.
Finally, I would like to add sustainability, which is outside of the scope of the Global Food Safety Initiative - as the name suggests, it’s about food safety! However, I think the GFSI model could be very interesting for sustainability. So perhaps we could also think about having an additional organisation or integrate it into the GFSI, to see if we can have the same success for sustainability as we have had for food safety.
This excerpt is adapted from a new series of Food Safety podcasts with Cor, which you can download for free on iTunes. LRQA will be exhibiting on stand C4-5 at the 2016 Global Food Safety Conference in Berlin from the 29th February to 3rd March.