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BRC agent and broker standard

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#1 Tankie

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 09:22 AM

Hi all,

 

First post and all that, so be gentle...

 

I work as a business advisor with a specialism in food and drink and as such accreditation pops up from time to time. I usually refer in consultants to set up the likes of BRC/ STS and increasingly SALSA but here's a question that i'd like a general opinion on.

 

I'm working with a well respected agent that imports product from Turkey, Africa and Asia and they would like to attain the above standard but have some reservations. They have been told that BRC accredited companies will (and are) asking for details of source suppliers which from an agents point of view is tantamount to commercial suicide. I've broached this with a BRC consultant who advised my customer to attain the broker / agent standard as this would negate this request. After speaking with the customer about this there is an opinion that the next issue (or even the current issue) has a requirement to reveal the source. Is this correct or just an urban myth?

 

As an aside I've also worked to secure funding towards SALSA as there is a £5,000 grant available via the TSB innovation voucher.

Its only in the UK but i've had a brewery and pasty company secure the funding.


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#2 BrummyJim

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 10:14 AM

Hi Tankie,

 

BRC7 states that "Where materials are purchased from agents or brokers, the site shall know the identity of the last manufacturer or packer, or for bulk commodity products the consolidation place of the raw material."

 

This implies that the purchasers are required to ask the question and get a suitable reply. The onus is on the purchaser to know the details, not the broker to offer them.

 

I understand where you are coming from as this has happened to us with the consequential loss of business. However, we have modified our business model to provide a better service and thus retain and even regain business.


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#3 Tankie

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 03:32 PM

Thanks BrummyJim,

 

Seems like a catch 22 situation for broker/ agents on the one hand sign up to BRC and get access to larger customers but in the other those same larger customers can use the documentation to drive you out of business. So what would be the advantage in going BRC, does IFS follow the same pattern- if not then surely this is the route to take for agents?

 

Surely, if a BRC audit is carried out against an agent/ broker this is assessed and the accountability then sits with the broker?

 

Would be great to hear from others in this situation...


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#4 BrummyJim

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 03:38 PM

We are in the juice industry and will often repack product into packaging more suitable for our customers. Not everyone wants a 25 tonne tanker load! We also have a very able logistics team and knowledgeable purchasing negotiators. These are the strengths that keep us in business even when our customers know the original manufacturer. Sometimes we lose, but more often the customer realises the benefits in buying from us rather than going it alone.


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#5 Kelly S

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Posted 14 October 2015 - 10:59 PM

I work with a company that literally only buys and resells product so all of our customers know who manufactures what they buy. The benefit for us is that we can supply smaller quantities on faster turn-around times than the manufacturers can as generally the bigger suppliers like to send whole truck loads of product, not just a few pallets. At the end of the day as long as your company treats the customer right the customer will usually stay, but that's just my experience :) 


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#6 Simon

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Posted 15 October 2015 - 05:55 AM

I'm not sure whether they expect (or obliged to see) to see the name and address of all suppliers, but they will certainly want to know country of origin and especially now lot's of detail on the controls you and the suppliers have in place to prevent food fraud or malicious tampering throughout the whole supply chain.  This part of VACCP/TACCP requirements.

 

Regards,

Simon


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#7 JohnWheat

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 07:18 AM

As Simon says - food fraud is a big deal at the moment and we're still working on the back of the horsemeat issue in the UK, retail customers in particular hit us all hard to ensure that there wasn't any nonsense going on. BRC et el were expected to tighten up requirements surrounding the issue.


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#8 FBQFS01

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Posted 30 November 2015 - 12:27 PM

My colleagues from our sales locations have the same worries as Tankie mentioned. Our sales location is selling product from other suppliers and they don't want to give out the names of the producers.

I know from BRC v7 that this is/will be required.

 

If we certify our sales location for BRC for Brokers, would this be enough and not give out the names of the producers?

Any one have any experience with this??

 

Fiona.


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