Good morning. I am excited to be a new member of this site. I have already found so many good articles and helpful information. I am also new to BRC, I was formally a Food Safety Auditor for SQF, FAMI-QS, and a host of other standards; but never BRC. I am now the QA Manager of a bakery and giving myself a crash course in BRC.
More to your question, I was able to get the extension aprpoved as my audit was scheduled for early June and things were still too risky in my region. We had to do a remote assessment with our scheduled auditor. The assessment was to determine if we were at high risk of a recall or putting BRC at risk during that extra 6 months without an onsite inspection. In addition, the majority of the focus was on what precautions we have implemented in regards to COVID-19. We had to develop a program for visitor screening (questionnaire), employee screening (temps), sanitation activities specific to COVID-19, training/education of COVID-19 and all new policies/procedures related to COVID-19, as well as a COVID-19 related Crisis Management Plan (what will we do if an employee or visitor is known to be positive or exposed or we had to reduce or stop production due to the rate of infections). The rest of the process was the same as a remote or document audit, issued NC's with required CA's, CA approval by the auditor (mine was completing the training for all 450 employees) and then the issuance of the revised certificate.
One point not many people are considering/discussing when making this decision is that the extension may impact your next audit window. For instance, I mentioned my regular audit was scheduled for June, with the extension it was pushed back to Nov (could have been as late as Jan) so now my annual cycle will be in Nov/Dec which as you know is around the holidays. My choices now are to have another audit 6 months after this upcoming one or start having them in the winter months going forward. Yes, the cost of the assessment, potentially having another audit 6 months later, and all the other changes could be factor for your facility. Just something to consider.
Thanks again for all the good info on this site.