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First SQF Audit


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#1 EHix

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 06:43 PM

I am the Senior Food Safety and Quality Manager for a low risk popcorn facility. 

 

Myself and Senior Production Manager were asked a year ago to get our plant SQF certified. We have been working hard for the past year  getting SQF Level 2 ready. Our Gap, desk, and facility audit are coming up soon. Does anyone have any advice they would like to share? 

 

Any help would be amazing!!!



#2 esquef

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 06:49 PM

I'll just say that if your gap analysis and desk/facility audit are being done by the same auditor you've made a wise decision. You'll have a good idea from the gap analysis what the certification auditor will be looking at/for. You won't get any consultation per se during the gap analysis, but you'll at leas know what's not compliant in the auditor's opinion, and you may get some advice on best industry practices.



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#3 EHix

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 07:12 PM

We do have the same auditor for all three audits. I have read on the forum before this is something we would want. 



#4 Simon

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 08:14 PM

It sounds like you are going about it the right way and that process will naturally take you along the right road.  It's difficult to give specific advice without knowing precisely what shape you are in, but I can say don't worry.  You will get NC's on the desk audit and gap audits, just work through them systematically and make sure what you have in place stays in place.  Keep the internal audits going and get as many people involved with them as possible; better you to find and solve those niggly problems before it really matters on the audit.

 

As you know there is always friendly and knowledgeable advice available here...many of us have been down the same road.

 

Good luck!

 

Regards,

Simon


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#5 EHix

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 09:06 PM

We have few concerns as of right now. From my understanding SQF says not to have the air filters in the same room as the air compressor and the filters should be located as close to the output as long as no risk could occur. 

 

11.5.7

"Wherever the compressed air comes in contact with the food, either directly or indirectly, high efficiency filters are to be in place at point-of-use where the air enters the final section of tubing (not in the compressor room)."

 

Currently our filters and compressor are side by side in the same room. 

 

The production manager has the idea to add another air filter in the production area closer to the output. What are your thoughts on this, our compressor and the 3 stage air filters are located in our warehouse. It would be very difficult to relocate the filters due to how they are set up. Would what my production manager suggested work for a auditor in your opinion?



#6 Appendix G

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 09:23 PM

You can always be honest and take a minor (BRC lingo) and just do your corrective action later after you have better figured out your needs.  (My experience anyhow).  We did it with negative air flow issues.



#7 YolandaZheng

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 09:24 PM

The filters close to the compressor are normally installed to protect the compressor, which are not the filters requested in SQF Code 11.5.7. The Code 11.5.7 concerns the purity of the compressed air, which will not bring any contaminant. What your production manager thought should be exactly what the SQF is expecting.



#8 EHix

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Posted 08 January 2016 - 09:31 PM

Makes sense. I'll inform him to move forward with his plan. 



#9 Charles.C

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Posted 09 January 2016 - 01:20 AM

This thread eventually looks amazingly similar to this one -

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...pcorn-facility/


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#10 Mulan1010

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Posted 15 January 2016 - 04:13 PM

If you are concerned about something not meeting the SQF Code due to the guidelines then you can do a risk assessment.  Our compressed air set-up does not meet the "guidelines" either but we tested the compressed air for microbials and inspected it for chemical and physical contaminants.  When the test results showed zero growth and we did not see any physical contaminants or chemical residues then it helped support that our compressed air was acceptable.  We continue to test it regularly and update the risk assessment yearly in preparation of our SQF Audit.  Overall we have about 10 Risk Assessments for things we do that don't meet the guidelines that SQF provides but we feel we meet the code.  You just have to explain the risk assessment why you meet the code in a different way than the guidelines describe.



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#11 EHix

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Posted 17 January 2016 - 02:23 AM

Thanks Lee Ann, that makes a lot of sense and is really helpful. I will be sure to put this into practice. We currently do "standing" air and compressed air micro testing so this will be easier then I thought to resolve.  






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