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Food Fraud Survey


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Poll: Have you assessed your food fraud vulnerability? (358 member(s) have cast votes)

Have you assessed your food fraud vulnerability?

  1. Yes (232 votes [64.80%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 64.80%

  2. No (52 votes [14.53%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 14.53%

  3. In Process (74 votes [20.67%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 20.67%

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#1 Simon

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Posted 05 February 2019 - 01:18 PM

Please answer the survey and let us know what tools you used to assess your food fraud vulnerability, what you found and what prevention strategies you implemented.

 

Regards,

Simon


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#2 Charles.C

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Posted 05 February 2019 - 02:35 PM

Actually if using current versions  BRC, SQF, IFS, FSSC22000, iso22000, the answer must be 1 ?

If preparing to use current version SQF, IFS, FSSC22000, iso22000, answer must be 3 ?


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#3 Simon

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 12:06 PM

Anyone find a significant risk of food fraud or not?


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#4 pHruit

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 03:18 PM

Hi Simon,

Yes. I was going to say unfortunately so, but on reflection it's actually the opposite - accurately identifying higher risk materials has protected the business I work for (and subsequent customers and consumers) from adulterated ingredients.

A large proportion of the ingredients I'm working wth fall into categories featured in the examples of "higher risk" products that they give at the start of a lot of the training material on food fraud, and with good reason...

I think my system works as we've caught things before we've purchased/used them - one of which contained almost as much adulterant as it did the claimed single ingredient that was supposed to be in the product -  and blacklisted a few potential suppliers too.

I've also seen and heard some pretty disturbing things along the way (relating to other businesses), which I unfortunately can't share for obvious legal reasons, but suffice to say that I genuinely can't imagine going back 4-5 years or so to the days when we didn't have a formal system to assess and manage this type of risk.

N.B. I still monitored it and arranged various analysis etc going back years before it became a requirement to have a system, but having something a bit more structured than what was basically gut instinct has been useful. Having said that, I caught a few things that way too ;)



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#5 Simon

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 04:28 PM

Thanks pHruit, do you use any particular system or tool?

 

Regards,

Simon


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#6 pHruit

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 05:00 PM

I wrote my own system - looked at various approaches, borrowed a few bits of them that I liked, mixed in a bit of HACCP principles, and ended up with something that I felt would be functional. It did feel like a bit of a gamble going into our first audit against Issue 7 of BRC with very little clarity as to what was expected, and a system that wasn't based on one of the few recognised methods that were available at the time, but it seems to have been reasonably effective.

 

With the benefit of several years running it, I do now wonder if the actual system may be somewhat secondary - it's knowing how it's supposed to work and knowing your materials that allows it to actually do something useful for you (surprisingly ;) ) . I've worked in the same area of the industry for a while, and thus have a very good understanding of how the whole supply chain actually works, where products really come from, and exactly what sort of things can go wrong, and I do think this is particularly helpful.

The actual calculation process for the risk assessment could be formulated in many ways, but the frequency is another area that I sometimes wonder about. Raw material availability, commodity markets etc can change fairly regularly, so if one only looks at these once per year there is a significant potential to miss any number of events that could affect the risk level. We do an annual review of the overall system, but the actual risk scoring gets reviewed monthly to keep track of prices, availability moving into / out of different harvest periods etc. It does increase the workload but it's really not too onerous once you find a way to gather the data sensibly and get a good feel for it (and not everything actually changes each month), and I really do think it's worth putting the extra time in. I'm sure there are raw material types for which it wouldn't be necessary, but there are definitely some that benefit from it.



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#7 Simon

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 05:05 PM

Sounds like you have a great system and no doubt keeping your customers and consumers safe.

 

Great job! :thumbup:

 

Regards,

Simon


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Need food safety advice?
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#8 jcieslowski

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 05:22 PM

I just wrote a little memo about it saying that I investigated alternative products (I'm a sugar refinery) and found, basically, that there's no 'fake sugar' that's less expensive than real sugar and thus no economic motive exists.  Not sure if that's going to fly, I'll let you know.



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#9 jryanIPC

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 06:49 PM

1. Identify all of your ingredients and suppliers

2. Do a risk analysis on each ingredient and supplier

     How long is your relationship with each supplier?  New vs longterm

     Country of Origin?  Is it a country known for ingredient adulteration / food fraud?

     Likelihood of ingredient being adulterated, replaced, etc.?  How easily can it be adulterated?  How many different companies handle it between the source and you?

     How much damage would be caused if this ingredient was adulterated? (RISK)

3.  Assess each ingredient / Supplier

     High risk / High likelihood = Dig deeper in your survey of that supplier, or better, find a new one.

     High risk / Low likelihood = May not have to replace the supplier but may need to help/require them to make some changes to improve their process.

     Low risk / Low likelihood = Less intensive survey needed.

 

We've looked at a number of online examples of surveys and used what we considered the best parts and chucked the rest.

In some cases we do onsite audits and other we are comfortable with a paper only survey.

 

Best of luck!


Edited by jryanIPC, 08 February 2019 - 07:05 PM.


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#10 Charles.C

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 09:01 PM

i notice that nobody has so far commented on locating a specifically safety-related fraudulent factor.

 

So much for FS ??


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#11 Mulan1010

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 11:28 PM

We used the VACCP Tool to complete our assessment.  Our ingredients are not a high risk for Food Fraud so it was a fairly simple assessment but did take time as we analyzed each ingredient and the vendors who supply the ingredients. 

 

Right or wrong we did make a comment that if the vendors had SQF or BRC or other approved certification then they were considered low risk for food fraud as they would have had to complete their own Food Fraud assessment to meet certification.  We also receive copies of their certifications and ask for a copy of their audit or at least their corrective action reports so we know what they were marked as unacceptable during their audits.  If one was marked non-compliant for Food Fraud then we would consider them medium risk and if they received a critical then a high risk.  We did not receive a non-compliance for Food Fraud under SQF so it worked this past year at least.



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#12 Charles.C

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 05:49 AM

We used the VACCP Tool to complete our assessment.  Our ingredients are not a high risk for Food Fraud so it was a fairly simple assessment but did take time as we analyzed each ingredient and the vendors who supply the ingredients. 

 

Right or wrong we did make a comment that if the vendors had SQF or BRC or other approved certification then they were considered low risk for food fraud as they would have had to complete their own Food Fraud assessment to meet certification.  We also receive copies of their certifications and ask for a copy of their audit or at least their corrective action reports so we know what they were marked as unacceptable during their audits.  If one was marked non-compliant for Food Fraud then we would consider them medium risk and if they received a critical then a high risk.  We did not receive a non-compliance for Food Fraud under SQF so it worked this past year at least.

 

Hi Mulan,

 

Thks for sharing approach.

 

IMO this merely proves that SQF Auditors are equally as baffled as the Auditees.

 

Two more interpretations of "High Risk" for the Encyclopedia. :smile:

 

Were all yr Vendors "Low Risk" ? If not, did you implement corrective actions ?

 

"the"  VACCP Tool ??

 

PS - Just to illustrate how "Risky",  "low Risk" foods can be -

 

Attached File  micro. ranking low moisture Foods,2014.pdf   3.03MB   163 downloads


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


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#13 Mulan1010

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 06:25 PM

Hi Charles - I agree that we are all learning how to handle the new requirements, which was a benefit for us. :)  We are trying to keep up and learn as we go.

 

  The VACCP Tool is very similar to HACCP only it is a vulnerability assessment rather than a hazard assessment.  We took a short one day class on Food Fraud and the tool was shared with us.

 

  For HACCP we do have High Risk ingredients and address them in our HACCP Plan.  For VACCP, concerning Food Fraud, we mainly have ingredients that were low risk for food fraud and a couple we listed as medium but we did not have any we found to be high after completing the assessment.



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#14 pHruit

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Posted 11 February 2019 - 10:10 AM

i notice that nobody has so far commented on locating a specifically safety-related fraudulent factor.

 

So much for FS ??

I'd generally take the view that if an ingredient is anything other than 100% (or as close as it's possible to actually verify in practice) what it claims to be then this is a bit academic, although to date the only ones I've personally found/caught have been "just" regulatory rather than safety issues. Generally the product types we're handling are more likely to be diluted/adulterated with cheaper fillers that are still food grade, so perhaps I'd have a different view if we started working with e.g. lots of ground spices, given the history/potential for adulterants to have significant FS consequences. 

 

Right or wrong we did make a comment that if the vendors had SQF or BRC or other approved certification then they were considered low risk for food fraud as they would have had to complete their own Food Fraud assessment to meet certification

I wonder if this is a common approach?

We certainly include certification status as a factor in our overall assessment, but there is no way I'd be comfortable with giving a free pass based solely on certification. The majority of the food fraud cases that I have direct personal experience of have involved ingredients produced by sites certified to GFSI-benchmarked standards. To some extent I take the same view with supplier assessment - writing a system to pass a certification standard, and looking convincing about it for the duration of an announced audit, are alas not the same as having genuine intent and commitment to consistently producing safe, authentic food to the best of a company's ability.

(I was cynical before I started working in this industry, and it doesn't seem to have helped :roflmao:  )



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#15 Sarahr78

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Posted 12 February 2019 - 01:41 PM

I would be interested to hear peoples opinions when it comes to the Storage and Distribution industry. (there is a discussion thread in this section without little participation) I'm struggling to understand how we can conduct a vulnerability assessment on ambient finished goods.  :uhm:

 

My only thoughts are we review our current site security risk assessment to ensure only authorised deliveries are permitted on site etc(which we do annually anyhow) or we ask all of our suppliers to complete a declaration that their products are authentic and ask them to advise if any of their products are classed as high risk or not.

 

Even then how would we know if a product is authentic or not?? If a supplier delivers a finished food product that is fraudulent how could we identify this?   



#16 AHJ

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Posted 15 February 2019 - 10:21 AM

We hired eurofins to do our assessment. They sent back a full report and analysis of each of our ingredients and suppliers using the Decernis Food Fraud Ingredient Vulnerability Screening Database. 



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#17 Charles.C

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Posted 15 February 2019 - 11:34 PM

We hired eurofins to do our assessment. They sent back a full report and analysis of each of our ingredients and suppliers using the Decernis Food Fraud Ingredient Vulnerability Screening Database. 

 

Hi AHJ,

 

Thks for the input.

 

Out of curiosity -

 

Which FS Standard ?

 

Mitigation Procedures Included ?

 

How many Ingredients ?

 

How long for Results ?

 

How much approx. ?


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#18 Charles.C

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Posted 18 February 2019 - 01:46 AM

I would be interested to hear peoples opinions when it comes to the Storage and Distribution industry. (there is a discussion thread in this section without little participation) I'm struggling to understand how we can conduct a vulnerability assessment on ambient finished goods.  :uhm:

 

My only thoughts are we review our current site security risk assessment to ensure only authorised deliveries are permitted on site etc(which we do annually anyhow) or we ask all of our suppliers to complete a declaration that their products are authentic and ask them to advise if any of their products are classed as high risk or not.

 

Even then how would we know if a product is authentic or not?? If a supplier delivers a finished food product that is fraudulent how could we identify this?   

 

Hi Sarah,

 

The (BRC - SD308) thread below in which you participated did seem to offer some useful advice, despite the SD's convoluted mess of text -

 

https://www.ifsqn.co...nt/#entry137405


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#19 kss151

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 05:17 PM

I would be interested to hear peoples opinions when it comes to the Storage and Distribution industry. (there is a discussion thread in this section without little participation) I'm struggling to understand how we can conduct a vulnerability assessment on ambient finished goods.  :uhm:

 

My only thoughts are we review our current site security risk assessment to ensure only authorised deliveries are permitted on site etc(which we do annually anyhow) or we ask all of our suppliers to complete a declaration that their products are authentic and ask them to advise if any of their products are classed as high risk or not.

 

Even then how would we know if a product is authentic or not?? If a supplier delivers a finished food product that is fraudulent how could we identify this?   

 

Is it under your own brand name? If not, is this really relevant per the standard? I dont see anything in the S&D standard that requires you to assess FF for anything that isnt under your own brand name. Please correct me if i'm wrong there.

 

If it is under your label, assessing the liklihood of fraud happening in the supply chain then maybe setting up routine tests to challenge the integrity of the product should cover it, if necessary. 



#20 Rishi Sharma

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 07:18 AM

Ask some relevant questions!!! Same questions repeating again & again is not good.



#21 pHruit

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 09:16 AM

Is it under your own brand name? If not, is this really relevant per the standard? I dont see anything in the S&D standard that requires you to assess FF for anything that isnt under your own brand name. Please correct me if i'm wrong there.

 

There has been an update to accommodate the current GFSI-benchmarking requirements - a new clause 3.5.3 has been added:

https://www.brcgloba...-1-19092018.pdf


Edited by pHruit, 21 February 2019 - 09:17 AM.


#22 kss151

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 03:44 PM

There has been an update to accommodate the current GFSI-benchmarking requirements - a new clause 3.5.3 has been added:

https://www.brcgloba...-1-19092018.pdf

I did not know this, thank you for sharing!



#23 Spudslinger

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 07:24 PM

Our plant deals with potatoes and we found our food fraud to be GMO products or pesticide usage. We don't accept GMO products. Also https://ffv.pwc.com/vsat/#/ is the tool I used to assess our food fraud, our SQF Auditor accepted it



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#24 Charles.C

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Posted 22 February 2019 - 04:13 AM

Our plant deals with potatoes and we found our food fraud to be GMO products or pesticide usage. We don't accept GMO products. Also https://ffv.pwc.com/vsat/#/ is the tool I used to assess our food fraud, our SQF Auditor accepted it

 

IIRC, it's promoted by SQF.


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#25 Sawad

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Posted 26 February 2019 - 05:49 AM

We are retails shop units. our tools are observations, sale report, smell, sight. Interview..etc

 

look for sale reports to find any left overs used again or not..

tasting the food..

verifying the records..

 






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