It is good to see the topic - development of the skills and knowledge to become a recognized professional in food safety is a cornerstone of our industry and profession. Something more formal and globally recognized means individuals become more valuable, and the knowledge becomes transferable. Certainly HACCP is a initial step, and having a course in the specific scheme for the site helps the audit result. These two are great introductions, but one also needs to build with more depth, and more complex issues.
The more qualified the individual, the more valuable they are to the organization, and more future prospects open up. From a scheme owners perspective, we need this type of in depth background for our future auditors as well.
This has been a serious topic at BRC GS for about a year, and they have just launched "BRC Professional". It has a focus on core skills (HACCP is now a prerequisite) like Internal Audit, Root Cause Analysis, Correction Action and Validation. The skills courses are not aligned on the BRC Standards, or sales pitches for them, they focus purely on the skill set, regardless of the standard or audit mechanism in place. The intentions are to add new skills training (supply chain management and category expertise are some of the near future topics) to allow people to advance to their capabilities.
Hopefully it will be a good addition to other options for a more advanced food safety professional development program.