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#1 petratsitlak2

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Posted 15 February 2016 - 06:32 PM

Hi All,

 

I am struggling with grading non conformances in the site where I work. How do you grade a non conformance? Is there any system or table/scale? How do you ensure the correct grade among critical, major or minor?

 

Any hint would be greatly appreciated.

 

Many thanks,

 

Petra



#2 mgourley

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Posted 15 February 2016 - 07:26 PM

Critical - Where there is a critical failure to comply with a food safety or legal issue

(food safety or legality of products has been compromised or is in imminent danger of compromise)

 

Major - Where there is a substantial failure to meet the requirements of a "statement of intent" or any clause of the Standard or a situation is identified which would, on the basis of available objective evidence, raise significant doubt as the the conformity of the product being supplied.

 

Minor- Where a clause has not been fully met, but on the basis of objective evidence, the conformity of the product is not in doubt.

 

Marshall



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#3 Simon

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Posted 15 February 2016 - 07:38 PM

Marshall has provided you the definitions from the BRC standard, is this what you are after Petra? Or are you looking to grade your internal audit non-conformances?

 

Regards,

Simon


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#4 Charles.C

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 01:22 AM


 

Marshall has provided you the definitions from the BRC standard, is this what you are after Petra? Or are you looking to grade your internal audit non-conformances?

 

Regards,

Simon

I agree with the implied distinction.

 

Compromise / conformity are such delightfully specifc terminologies.  :smile:

 

The precise interpretation  / impact presumably varies with the type of product, process, nonconformance.

 

@Petra -  can you give any  examples of causes of confusion ? Some (non-BRC) Haccp-related examples do exist for specific industries


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#5 petratsitlak2

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 09:40 AM

Thank you very much for your interest.

 

I will try to expalin you our situation; So, we are a small company trying to get certified against BRC issue7. We handle spices and some other dries which all of them have long shelf life. All the procedures in production are held manually. Recently, we have reported a NC about applying the wrong BBE date on the label. Would you grade this as a major? Another example is the fact that some bags were damaged during transit and the customer received damaged our finished product and notified us by sending a customer complaint. What grade of NC would you give? At this point, I should mention that among the objectives of the company is to receive less than 20 customer complaints by the year 2016. 

 

Finally, when you are reviewing these non conformances under the framework of annual objectives review. Would you emphasize the grade? or you would rather focus on the number of NCs? Would be wise on the objectives of the coming year to categorize your NCs into critical, major or minor? 

 

Many thanks,

Petra



#6 mgourley

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 09:59 AM

I would give the wrong BBE date a Minor. This assumes of course that if someone used the product after the BBE date it would not sicken or injure the person. (in essence, a quality issue).

 As for the damaged bags, you would have to do a RCA. If the bags were damaged during transit, and you were not responsible for the transit, it's not a NC on your part. However, I would be looking into the transportation practices of your carrier.

 

As for objectives, I would leave NC's out completely. This is not to say that you should not be tracking them and doing appropriate RCA CAPA. I just don't think NC's are something that can be "measured" in the same way as "X customer complaints per Y products sold".

 

Marshall



#7 QAGB

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 12:47 PM

Thank you very much for your interest.

 

I will try to expalin you our situation; So, we are a small company trying to get certified against BRC issue7. We handle spices and some other dries which all of them have long shelf life. All the procedures in production are held manually. Recently, we have reported a NC about applying the wrong BBE date on the label. Would you grade this as a major? Another example is the fact that some bags were damaged during transit and the customer received damaged our finished product and notified us by sending a customer complaint. What grade of NC would you give? At this point, I should mention that among the objectives of the company is to receive less than 20 customer complaints by the year 2016. 

 

Finally, when you are reviewing these non conformances under the framework of annual objectives review. Would you emphasize the grade? or you would rather focus on the number of NCs? Would be wise on the objectives of the coming year to categorize your NCs into critical, major or minor? 

 

Many thanks,

Petra

 

 

Hi Petra,

 

I agree with Marshall's assessment of your non-conformances found. 

 

As far as your annual objectives review, I would not emphasize any grading. You could review non-conformances that you find to be substantial or that you find to have repeat issues throughout the year. I would not suggest using "minor, major, and critical" to assess non-conformances, as that could cause concern with your auditor. Sometimes assessing a non-conformance can be difficult, and you wouldn't want to label something as a major that really would be a minor.

 

Also, the number of non-conformances in a given year can be difficult to control. If you wanted to use non-conformances as an objective, you could use the costs associated with the non-conformances as an objective. Costs are much easier to measure.

 

QAGB



#8 Charles.C

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 12:59 PM

Hi Petra,

 

IMEX, the NC grading given may relate (amongst other factors) to the specific clause referred. Is it possible to give this information ?


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#9 petratsitlak2

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 02:13 PM

Hi Petra,

 

IMEX, the NC grading given may relate (amongst other factors) to the specific clause referred. Is it possible to give this information ?Well

 

 

Well, a wrong BBE label on the bag could be attributed to an NC of clause 6.2 which is a fundamental clause of BRC Standard. Taking into account that there are checks in the beginning, middle and end of the packing run and the fact that the NC was reported from the customer, I would give a major.

 

So, If I am not mistaken, you all suggest that the objectives should be money-wise set and not just give a number of non-conforming products...? If I may ask, could you please tell me your opinion about the following objectives? Do you find them acceptable or should I rephrase?

 

1.      **** Ltd will achieve accreditation against BRC Standard issue 7 by April 2016

2.      Production capacity will increase to hold an additional 20 trolleys

3.      A metal detector will be purchased in 2016

4.      An integrated sieving system will be purchased in 2016

5.      *** Technology will be integrated into company's operations in 2016

6.      Not more than 15 customer complaints will be met during the year 2016

7.      Not more than 15 non-conforming products will be met in the year 2016

8.      Corrective actions as the result of non-conformities from internal audits shall be followed up within 20 working days during the year 2016.

9.      At least 85% of the swab protein tests carried out per month will be successful in the year 2016

10.    All Staff to have been trained in all relevant operations as these are defined into the training matrix.



#10 Charles.C

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 02:21 PM

Hi Petra,

 

Sorry, i misunderstood yr post 5. I thought you were quoting actual events, not hypothetical ones.

 

BRC auditors are obliged to give a reference clause for an NC.

 

The point is that the interpretation of the NC (ie C/Ma/Mi) may be related to the specific text in the clause, eg more hypothesising -

 

The NC against clause x has caused production of unsafe/illegal product – C

The NC against clause y is likely to cause a FS-related event  – Ma

etc

 

From memory a major NC on a fundamental clause  > No certificate.


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#11 QAGB

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 02:39 PM

Well, a wrong BBE label on the bag could be attributed to an NC of clause 6.2 which is a fundamental clause of BRC Standard. Taking into account that there are checks in the beginning, middle and end of the packing run and the fact that the NC was reported from the customer, I would give a major.

 

So, If I am not mistaken, you all suggest that the objectives should be money-wise set and not just give a number of non-conforming products...? If I may ask, could you please tell me your opinion about the following objectives? Do you find them acceptable or should I rephrase?

 

1.      **** Ltd will achieve accreditation against BRC Standard issue 7 by April 2016

2.      Production capacity will increase to hold an additional 20 trolleys

3.      A metal detector will be purchased in 2016

4.      An integrated sieving system will be purchased in 2016

5.      *** Technology will be integrated into company's operations in 2016

6.      Not more than 15 customer complaints will be met during the year 2016

7.      Not more than 15 non-conforming products will be met in the year 2016

8.      Corrective actions as the result of non-conformities from internal audits shall be followed up within 20 working days during the year 2016.

9.      At least 85% of the swab protein tests carried out per month will be successful in the year 2016

10.    All Staff to have been trained in all relevant operations as these are defined into the training matrix.

 

 

Hi Petra,

 

Those objectives are detailed enough. I still think you should take a look at items 6 and 7. Customer complaints can be very minor; for example, "This product is too salty for me." That doesn't mean anything is necessarily wrong with the product. If you just want to quantify customer complaints, you have to define what you consider an actual complaint. Do you mean significant customer complaints that warrant corrective actions by your company?

 

Also, again in respect to non-conforming products, you could end up with 20 non-conformances, and only 8 of those were needing corrective actions. By definition, you would not have met your objectives for the year. Costs can usually tell you more about the significance of the non-conformances and if corrective actions are working from year-to-year.

 

QAGB



#12 QAGB

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 02:45 PM

Well, a wrong BBE label on the bag could be attributed to an NC of clause 6.2 which is a fundamental clause of BRC Standard. Taking into account that there are checks in the beginning, middle and end of the packing run and the fact that the NC was reported from the customer, I would give a major.

 

So, If I am not mistaken, you all suggest that the objectives should be money-wise set and not just give a number of non-conforming products...? If I may ask, could you please tell me your opinion about the following objectives? Do you find them acceptable or should I rephrase?

 

1.      **** Ltd will achieve accreditation against BRC Standard issue 7 by April 2016

2.      Production capacity will increase to hold an additional 20 trolleys

3.      A metal detector will be purchased in 2016

4.      An integrated sieving system will be purchased in 2016

5.      *** Technology will be integrated into company's operations in 2016

6.      Not more than 15 customer complaints will be met during the year 2016

7.      Not more than 15 non-conforming products will be met in the year 2016

8.      Corrective actions as the result of non-conformities from internal audits shall be followed up within 20 working days during the year 2016.

9.      At least 85% of the swab protein tests carried out per month will be successful in the year 2016

10.    All Staff to have been trained in all relevant operations as these are defined into the training matrix.

 

Hi Petra,

 

Also, to expand on your BBE example, it is up to the auditor's interpretation whether or not your non-conformance would be considered a minor or a major against the statement of intent.

 

I personally think that would be a minor NC, unless the incorrect BBE is something that routinely happens. If the auditor were to find several instances of incorrect BBEs or other batch coding, there would be reason to say that the checks in place are not suitable enough to correct issues or prevent them from happening. Also, as Marshall said earlier, if the product is not safe to use after the BBE, that could directly be a major NC. Otherwise, I'd think it would be a minor.

 

 

QAGB



#13 Charles.C

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 03:01 PM

Hi QAGB,

 

Actually customer complaints (and related)  is quite a popular "objective" but perhaps more "geared" to a larger throughput than present as per yr reservations.

 

eg these threads (and many others) -

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...complaint-kpis/

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...ctives-in-2014/


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#14 QAGB

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 03:43 PM

Hi QAGB,

 

Actually customer complaints (and related)  is quite a popular "objective" but perhaps more "geared" to a larger throughput than present as per yr reservations.

 

eg these threads (and many others) -

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...complaint-kpis/

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...ctives-in-2014/

 

 

Hi Charles,

 

We also use customer complaints for trending and as a KPI, but only customer complaints that warrant corrective actions. Due to the nature of food (as we all have experienced), some customers have sensory complaints (too sweet, too salty, too runny, tastes different than "z" company's). Unless something tests unusually, these complaints are not lumped in with actual complaints for non-conformances.

 

At least in a few places in those threads, posters were using customer complaints per "x" units produced. That method is more quantifiable than 15 customer complaints per year. In my opinion, it's also one of the better quantifiable ways to use customer complaints, rather than a flat number of complaints. That's why I stated to take a look at that particular phrasing as an objective.

 

QAGB



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#15 petratsitlak2

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Posted 17 February 2016 - 12:11 PM

Thank you all for your valuable feedback!

 

I will take everything into consideration.

 

Kind regards,

Petra






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