BRC Global Standard For Food Safety

As the first standard to comply with the Global Food Safety Initiative, BRC is among the most utilized standards in the food industry, and is firmly established in UK, Europe and USA alike.

Originally conceived as a protocol for products produced under brands of retail chains in 1998, its current scope is much wider, tailoring to a significant array of areas in the food supply chain. Furthermore, the standard helped the food industry meet the criteria of the EU General Product Safety Directive, resulting in global renown with 20,000+ certified sites worldwide.  A certificate testifies that product safety, integrity, legality and quality are present in the production and handling processes. A certificate can be acquired through a third-party audit performed by an accredited certification body, while the frequency of the audits varies, either 6 or 12 months, depending on the performance of the applicant.

Certima BV is accredited for the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety by RVA (the Dutch Accreditation Council).

BRC certification offers multiple advantages:

  • New business opportunities – Improve your ability to work with the many organizations for which BRC GS certification is a contractual obligation or expectation and is a tool to demonstrate a high level of safety of manufactured foods.
  • Customer confidence – The BRC Global Standard helps you protect your brand, giving customers confidence in your production programs and supply chain management, while gaining the ability to track your certificates with the online BRC directory.
  • Supply chain access – The BRC Global Standard for Food Safety is accepted and specified by many global retailers, manufacturers, ingredients companies, food service organizations and raw material processors as part of their supplier approval process.
  • Competitive advantage – A possibility to extract value out of the certificate by gaining an edge over uncertified competitors

BRC Food Safety Standard Issue 8 was published in August 2018, with audits commencing from February 2019. The focus of attention for this issue has been on:

  • Development of product safety culture
  • Expanding the requirements for environmental monitoring
  • Encouraging sites to further develop systems for security and food defense
  • Clarifying the requirements for high-risk, high-care and ambient high-care production risk zones
  • Providing greater clarity for sites manufacturing pet food
  • Ensuring global applicability and benchmarking to the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI)

This standard is created by the British Retail Consortium in 1998 as a protocol for organizations producing products under the brand of retail chains but nowadays it is widely known in other areas of the food industry. BRC has established itself as a tool for many international and national companies to assess their suppliers. BRC Global Food standard is recognized by major retailers worldwide.

BRC Food Certification by an independent certification organization is a tool to demonstrate a high level of safety of manufactured foods.

Another advantage that this certificate gives you is the opportunity to become part of the so-called BRC directory where all users of the BRC website can track your progress towards certification.

BRC standard is designed to help retailers to comply with legal requirements and to ensure high level of consumer protection. It includes the basic principles of their own supplier requirements and product specifications and is revised and reissued periodically.

BRC Food Standard supports unannounced audits.

There are 5 grades of certification: AA being the highest level, followed by grades A, B, C and D. The grade depends on the number and severity of the non-conformities found during the audit. For unannounced audits the + symbol is added to the grade.

At the certification decision, both the audit grade and the quality and timeliness of your Corrective Action Plan are taken into account.