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What docs do you send your customers?

haccp customers document control

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#1 TonyM

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Posted 24 March 2017 - 05:07 PM

I have a customer who is asking for what I feel is more than is reasonable. I have provided a flowchart and CCP summary as well as some other programs, but they are asking for a detailed hazard analysis for every step. In my mind, thats getting into enough detail of our processes that its confidential. I already told them that they can come look at my books but I wont send that, and they came back to me with a confidentiality letter they have written up and their requirements to have all this info and their non-disclosure promise. Their letter is specific about foreign suppliers and imported goods, but we are a domestic supplier. I still dont feel like its reasonable for them to demand this much info. This isnt even a big customer of ours and their demands are starting to piss me off!

 

What Im curious to know from other members, is what all are you guys okay with sending your customers when they start making these demands?



#2 pooled

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Posted 24 March 2017 - 06:22 PM

Usually all I am requested for is to answer a questionnaire plus a copy of my certificate. The same that I mostly request for myself, some do send me copies of their audits but not detailed hazard analysis or anything of the like. 

 

I have a customer coming to inspect my facility in a couple of weeks and the requirements seem just like any food safety audit.



#3 Charles.C

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Posted 25 March 2017 - 04:36 AM

Hi TonyM,

 

Can be a slippery slope, eg -

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...quality-manual/

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...-bad-customers/

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...-audit-reports/


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#4 GMO

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Posted 25 March 2017 - 11:22 AM

We start with the reduced version but ultimately if they keep pushing, I tend to send people what they want.  In reality no process is actually that secret and only so much can be gleaned from a HACCP plan.  I haven't got the time to be coming up with more and more versions of documents just to send out.



#5 GMO

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Posted 25 March 2017 - 11:24 AM

 

We ask for audit reports but if I'm honest we only look at the non conformance summary so if someone sent that, it would be fine.  A lot of manufacturers think that just sending the certificate is fine which it isn't really.  By asking for things like that, you're trying to avoid a time consuming audit for both parties.  Not saying all requests are fair though.

 

There is a gap in the market for a system to sit alongside GFSI to have standard responses for customer requests, be they specifications, information on HACCP or vulnerability studies etc.



#6 TonyM

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Posted 28 March 2017 - 04:38 PM

I have no problem at all sending out our HACCP plan (CCP summary), flowchart, full audit reports and even copies of our pre-req programs. This customer is asking for a detailed hazard analysis of every step in the process. What we make isnt hard to do and in all reality, there isnt that much about it that is "trade secrets" or proprietary. For me it just seems like they are asking for way too much. Our biggest customers are so easy and require very little but this one customer, maybe 3% of our total sales, is asking for more or less everything they would need documentation wise to setup their own production line and make our products themselves with the system(s) that I created! Im pretty sure at one point they had asked for formulas too!



#7 ctzinck

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Posted 28 March 2017 - 07:31 PM

different customers ask for different things, and I'v noticed what they ask for changes from year to year.

 

For example last year all our customers were happy with just a copy of our current 3rd party audit certificate but this year everyone is asking for a copy of the entire audit including findings and my responses, and the certificate.

 

As the world wide food safety environment evolves customer demands evolve along with it.

 

I'v never refused to send them anything.



#8 wrighty

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Posted 29 March 2017 - 12:07 PM

i would be a bit sceptical also, especially if you have an idea they want to recreate your process. I would sent them the bare minimal and run the risk of losing their business, if they are only 3% of your business the loss is negible, because if you provide everything they are asking and they then recreate your process at their site you'll lose the business anyway



#9 BrummyJim

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Posted 29 March 2017 - 01:40 PM

Well, I believe my requests are fairly onerous, but am generally satisfied. I ask for:

SAQ - statement of no change acceptable

Certificates (GFSI, organic et al)

Audit report

HACCP flow (and water)

HACCP chart

Pesticides, heavy metals and authenticity

Various policies

Ethical standards

I don't request a full HACCP plan, but sometimes receive it. I'm currently going through our annual supplier review and having no problems.



#10 Ryan M.

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Posted 30 March 2017 - 01:02 AM

It is just one of those things you have to bite the bullet and do.  However, if you feel the line is being crossed talk with your manger and upper management to let them know you don't want to share the information.  Sometimes, just a discussion over the phone can clear up a lot of things with your customers.

 

Personally, I'm in the process of putting together a general facility quality & food safety overview with various documents as a one PDF file and a similar type product group specific packet for customers.  I get these from some of our major suppliers and it provides a lot more information than I would ever need or ask for, and all in one packet.



#11 BrummyJim

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Posted 30 March 2017 - 07:14 AM

In a way I also support Ryan's view. When you've received a lot of SAQs, you find that the questions are generally the same, just in a different order. I'm quite happy to receive a standard company response as it demonstrates that they've considered the issues carefully. 



#12 QAGB

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Posted 04 April 2017 - 06:52 PM

It is just one of those things you have to bite the bullet and do.  However, if you feel the line is being crossed talk with your manger and upper management to let them know you don't want to share the information.  Sometimes, just a discussion over the phone can clear up a lot of things with your customers.

 

Personally, I'm in the process of putting together a general facility quality & food safety overview with various documents as a one PDF file and a similar type product group specific packet for customers.  I get these from some of our major suppliers and it provides a lot more information than I would ever need or ask for, and all in one packet.

 

 

I've thought about putting together a packet. We have a couple of suppliers that put together a packet in a .zip file for our documentation needs; and usually everything we need is there. However, as suppliers ourselves, we still get the occasional request for random other documents that we've never seen or heard of before. So we usually just stick to the old attaching each document to the e-mail method.

 

I do find that there are some requests that we do not complete; especially related to TonyM's original question. We provide a very detailed HACCP Flow Diagram and will answer questions related to CCPs, but there are some parts of the process that we're not willing to distribute. We are co-manufacturers to several organizations; and some of them are very specific as to not divulging certain parts of the process. Our HACCP plans are allowed to be viewed on-site, but we do not distribute the majority of the content. Our customers have been fine with that.

 

As previously stated by other posters, a meeting or a conference call may need to be considered between the company and the customer to discuss how to make it suitable for both parties. Unfortunately, that could mean making additional documents. However, that may be the best option in this case.

 

 

QAGB







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