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Taking Over SQF System - Need Help

SQF Level 2

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#1 ajs1286


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Posted 25 September 2014 - 01:05 PM

First things first - I may be in over my head. I just started at a new company and they have an audit coming up in approx. 6 weeks. That being said...


Nothing has been done since the last audit.



The record documentation and verification fell off about 6 months ago and I figure that is where I should focus my efforts for the time being until I get the hang of the process. The whole system needs to be Verified and Validated. All procedures, SOP's and forms need to be reviewed, including HACCP and well...you get the picture. Lots of work to be done.


My question is, where should I even start? Should I just go section by section or would you recommend me working on the more important elements first, like HACCP and Sanitation? Are there things I can/should let slide? I am basically the only one at this place that knows anything about SQF so I can't really get advice from anyone else. If you were faced with this same situation, what would you do???




#2 ajs1286


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Posted 25 September 2014 - 01:09 PM

Edit: I should also mention that I have already performed a gap assessment, which is when I figured out just how much this system has been neglected.

#3 Tony-C


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Posted 25 September 2014 - 01:41 PM

Hi AS,


Sounds a nightmare!


Given the same situation I would be looking at issues with HACCP and Product Conformity first.


Priority for Module 2 would be the mandatory elements:
2.1.1 Management Policy
2.1.2 Management Responsibility
2.1.3 Food Safety and Quality Management System
2.1.4 Management Review
2.2.1 Document Control
2.2.2 Records
2.4.1 Food Legislation
2.4.2 Food Safety Fundamentals
2.4.3 Food Safety Plan (at level 2, 3) Food Quality Plan (at level 3)
2.4.8 Product Release
2.5.2 Validation and Effectiveness
2.5.4 Verification and Monitoring
2.5.5 Corrective and Preventative Action
2.5.7 Internal Audit
2.6.1 Product Identification
2.6.2 Product Trace
2.6.3 Product Withdrawal and Recall
2.7.1 Food Defense
2.9.2 Training Program

From your gap assessment you should have an idea of what you should prioritize (including Module 11 requirements)


If you have categorized any non-conformities then critical should be addressed first then major then minor.


I would also review non-conformities raised at the last audit.




#4 RG3


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Posted 26 September 2014 - 12:07 AM

First breath...


You've somewhat already covered 2.1.3 by reviewing the systems in its entirety. Make sure all the non-conformities from last year are taken care of.


Apart from what Tony C suggested...you have to be strategic with what little time you have...start laying out the meetings/trainings/exercises that need to be done annually on your calendar. The in betweens is when you'll do what Tony C suggested.



CCP validation



GMP audits



Business Continuity Exercise



Internal Audit


Trainings On Trainings

#5 SQFconsultant



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Posted 02 October 2014 - 03:31 AM

Call your CB and tell them that you just took over the system and that you need to re-set the date for the audit - push it out to the maximum that you can and then get a good consultant or bring in another SQF Practitioner to re-set everything.  We recently handled a situation like this; rather fast paced but actually quite exciting!

Kind regards,
Glenn Oster
GOC Group | +1.800.793.7042 | Serving the Food, Food Packaging & Food Storage Industries
SQF Development, Implementation, eContinuity & Certification Consultants 
In a nutshell we help small to large businesses to get their act together (as needed), help them to co-develop
entire SQF documentation systems, make recommendations as to installations and repairs in order
to get certified and continue with on-going support thru our popular eConsultant program and we do
all within 30 days so your staff can implement with our assistance to retain and get new business!
Serving the new Republic of the United States of America & Alliance Countries




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Posted 09 October 2014 - 10:54 AM

"...but actually quite exciting!"


One day as I was leaving for work, my wife innocently wished me an exciting day.  I said, "No, thank you, I never want exciting.  A great day at the food manufacturing plant is a boring day."

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