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Obtaining letters of guarantee

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 02:10 PM

Hello all,


 I reviewed the thread on letters of guarantee and saw the concerns on how current a letter of guarantee should be, but my question is regarding obtaining a letter of guarantee, period.


 We keep our letters of guarantee current to two years for direct contact product, indirect and no contact letters can be more then two years. We process meat and re-distribute boxed meat as "pull" items.


My problem is getting a L.O.G from some distributors at all. We have suppliers that use multiple establishments throughout the year and do not send us letters when a new supplier is used. I have discovered product in our building supplied through a distributor and none of my receiving personnel can tell me what distributor the product came from. I go through bills to see where the product came from then when I go directly to the establishment that is listed on the box as the manufacture to get a letter of guarantee, they refuse to send me one because we are not the direct purchaser. Other companies send a letter that when you go to look at the letter it automatically updates the date to today's date, is this acceptable or even legal? And even other companies have no idea of what you are talking about so take months or even years to get a letter to you, this is even after calling the manufacturer for the supplier to let them know you need the letter. 


Does anyone have a clue how to manage all of this and obtain the needed letters with less time and frustration spent?


Thanks for any information or advice you can give, I appreciate it!


Frustrated and overwhelmed in Ohio




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Posted 13 July 2017 - 08:01 PM

I currently work at a smaller company and I can empathize with you that it is a challenge when everyone is more concerned about getting product in and shipping it back out then if we have a Letter of Guarantee on file!


What I've done is make sure we are recording everything that is coming in and I have my QA technician check the Approved Supplier list that I created in an Excel document. This has all of our distributors and all of the suppliers that we said we would buy from.  In the event that we get in an item from a supplier/distributor that is not on the list, I at least have a heads up that it's in the building and can document an inspection of the item/product/material.  I keep a 'to do' list with my buyer of all of the suppliers we need documentation from.  Sometimes we can go through the distributor. Other times, we need to go to the supplier themselves.  It is a tedious process and yes sometimes we run into a roadblock that they do not want to give us any information.  I treat these materials as a 'trial' item and if we can't get the information, I have the buyer let distributor know they cannot source from there going forward.  


Ultimately, I'm working with our buyer to ask the questions up front (i.e. who are you sourcing this material through) so the legwork can be done prior to the material arriving.  

I have had suppliers send links to their Letter of Guarantees on line that do automatically update.  I haven't run into an auditor that questioned that, and as long as it's signed I never had an issue with an auditor.   

Ideally nothing should come in the door that's not from an approved supplier or distributor - it takes awhile to get there though (and maybe a bottle of tylenol)

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Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: letters of guarantee, certificates of conformance

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