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What do you do if your site is intentionally not complying with a clause of the standard?


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FoodSafetyAPP

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 01:01 PM

Hi all. 

 

Not sure if this is the most relevant area to post / tried to find previous topics but struggled. 

 

What do you do if your site is intentionally not complying with a clause / standard?

 

I was employed into this role to get the site accredited to a particular standard, progress is good and communication is good. I have one particular area (at the moment) where they are not complying with the standard. It is an easy fix, simply a change of supplier / product, however they have decided to intentionally stick with the same supplier and accept that the non-conformance will come. I let them know of my disapproval and they said they would discuss / investigate and come back to me. I was absent for one meeting, and this meeting they agreed / confirmed that they would not be changing supplier and would be staying as is, even though it is non-conforming.  

 

What do I do in this situation?

 

I am going to have to refuse to issue any procedures / documentation regarding this whole area, and refuse to communicate with the auditor when this area comes up, as I am not knowingly putting my name on something that is non-conforming, nor am I going to try and challenge an auditor when I know it is non-conforming. However, I worry I could get 'disciplined' for not doing my job. 

 

Also, I very much see this as MY food safety management system and therefore, even being aware of it is enough for me to know I am not doing my job to the best. 

 

Guidance appreciated. 



kingstudruler1

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 01:40 PM

Can i ask why they you feel like the supplier shouldn't be used, why they feel they should, risk of ingredient, and the standard you are using?


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Charles.C

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 02:25 PM

Hi FSA,

 

Sorry for your troubles. As per previous post, it's rather difficult to comment without more Product/Process/Deviation specifics. Is an immediate threat to consumer health involved IYO?

 

Who is "they" ? 

 

Does your position in Organization Chart report directly to the "Boss" ?

 

Sometimes "minor" existing errors are well-known to Top Management but are decided to not be necessary to correct, ie a forthcoming  NC is considered acceptable.


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


Scampi

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 03:01 PM

You could write a deviation of your own that states that you are aware and include the email (if any) communication from the company stating their position---that won't protect your job, but it will protect your integrity


Please stop referring to me as Sir/sirs


FoodSafetyAPP

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 03:18 PM

Hi all. 

 

It is the use of non-food grade / safe cleaning chemicals. They are all perfumed and do not meet BS EN 1276 / 13697 which is also a requirement.

 

'They' is the immediate team I work with - production managers and head of services, all of whom have little or no experience in food safety management systems / complying with standards.  



ok_crispy

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 03:28 PM

Have you presented the "cost of quality" example to your management team? Showing that whatever savings or reasoning that could be motivating the continued use of NC chemical can't be outweighed by the warning/fines/etc. that come along with continues use? 

 

Many times presenting it as a cost/benefit analysis is the only way to get it through - all operators think in terms of $$. 



Scampi

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 03:37 PM

Ah, this is a regulatory issue first and foremost  and a GFSI compliance issue second

 

If you feel so inclined, you can call your regulatory body and have a frank discussion with them---it sounds like this company has a culture issue, which is incredibly difficult to change (it's a top down issue, not bottom up)

 

If they have already stated that they are comfortable with the non conforming supplier-your hands are tied--they are well aware of the decision they have made

 

 

My hunch would be there is some kind of kickback occurring that is worth more to them than the non conformance


Please stop referring to me as Sir/sirs


Christopher Martinez

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 07:34 PM

what i have learned is you can only do so much. once you have done your research and presented it to the team and they still don't change your mind, then your jobs finished. just document your finings and their decision on the matter so when its time to get audited and the auditor asks what's going on you have data showing that you know about it and tried to change it. at that point the auditor will decide if its a non conformance and you have a certain time to get the non conformance to conformance, if not then your company runs a huge risk of losing the certification at that point it doesn't matter what the team wants unless the want to loose their certification.  don't make yourself out to be their enemy by protecting yourself only, just do your job correctly and make the auditor the enemy.  i assure you have nothing to worry about as long as you follow the correct steps and from the sounds of it you have executed everything perfectly. just trust in yourself and the process. the whole point of this process is also to figure out at what point up the chain is the issue happening at and from the sounds of it its not at your point. 



sqflady

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 08:54 PM

I always say it is my job to keep the person in charge (President, CEO, Owner) out of jail.  Would they prefer to spend significant money on a recall when regulatory finds out about the non-food grade chemicals?



Christopher Martinez

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Posted 23 March 2022 - 09:09 PM

I always say it is my job to keep the person in charge (President, CEO, Owner) out of jail.  Would they prefer to spend significant money on a recall when regulatory finds out about the non-food grade chemicals?

I get that but if their knowingly doing this intentionality and you have shown them why they shouldn't do it that way because against what the elements say then that's their decision, their your boss all you can do is recommend the best course of action after that its up to management to implement the ideas/ elements the best wat possible based on what you think they should do. your job is to basically make sure they comply and if they don't then that's out of your control. just go along with it until you get audited, once you get the non conformance then once again present your idea on how to fix the situation, at that point ide imagine their running the risk of loosing their certification and I don't think their gonna wanna do that. like I said don't make yourself out to be their enemy let the auditor be their enemy and you come swooping in like a hero (figure of speech). I know its really hard because your just wanting to look out for them but like I said sometimes its out of your control and their aint no better teacher then experience for them to learn and not repeat the same mistake and perhaps during the process have gained a little more insight and respect when you do present your ideas to them. trust the process.

 

sending you good vibes and hope your situation improves. stay strong! you got this!






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