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2.4.5 Incoming Goods and Services

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Posted 07 March 2017 - 09:09 PM

I am looking to make our vendor approval program simpler and manageable.  I'm not sure where to start especially with all the new FSMA rules and what I can change with our program.  Currently vendors are approved when the President signs the specification from the vendor approving it and we request the following documents from the Manufacturer:


24 Hour Contact


Shelf Life


Letter of Gurantee

Insurance Certificate

Micro Standards (Limits)

Allergen Statement

HACCP Programs

HACCP Flowchart

3rd Party Audit

Country Of Origin

Ingredient Declaration

Kosher Certificate

Halal Status


GMO Statement

Pure Food Guaranty

Heavy Metal Statement

FDA Registration or Statement Saying they are registered

Manufacturing Location

Natural Statement

Copy of Label

Gluten Statement

Melamine Statement- for anything coming from China

Irradiation Statement - for all spices received


From the Distributor we request

Distributor Insurance

Distributor 3rd Party Audit

Pure Food Guaranty

Distribution Location

Distributor FDA Registration or Statement saying they are registered


All of our ingredients are low risk and we used to request all of these documents every year.  Now starting last year we only request documents that expire yearly such as:


3rd Party Audit

Insurance Certificate

Kosher Certificate


I have risked based all of our ingredients and we are sending out Supplier Questionnaire's annually to monitor and review our suppliers.  I'm looking for an easier way to make this program simpler.  Some of our distributor's only send the Manufacturer insurance so I'm not sure if we need the distributor insurance also.  I don't understand why we need the Pure food guaranty from the distributor if we have it from the manufacturer.  I'm also unsure if we need the distributor FDA Statement if we are getting it from the manufacturer.  Some of our suppliers will only send the HACCP Flow Chart and not the HACCP Program.  We have 2 supplers that don't do 3rd party audits and get inspected by the FDA but won't give us a copy of the inspection.  We are trying to have the distributor get it to us since it isn't feasible for us to audit them or get another supplier. 


Any suggestions would be great. 

Ryan M.

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Posted 09 March 2017 - 05:33 PM

This is a difficult process when using distributors or brokers.  I have always been challenged by auditors because you can't get all distributors/brokers to handle them in the same manner.  Meaning, some of them will sign off and provide all the documents themselves and others will push some of it onto the manufacturer and others push it all on the manufacturer.


My standpoint has always been


  1. Can I show proof the supplier (whoever they claim to be) can product a safe and high quality product consistently?
  2. Is the liability taken by the supplier?

If you can answer yes to both it shouldn't matter where the documents come from.  One caveat, when dealing with brokers or distributors you will need to make sure they do not switch manufacturers of the material before they inform you.  This is one area where it can get sticky.  In my experience, most distributors and brokers abide by this, but you should get this in writing.

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