Improved customer service process

Taking into account your ongoing feedback, the complexity of all standard requirements (especially regarding unannounced audits), we are focused on making the process of planning and performing the audits more transparent, predictable and efficient.

In order to sustain and develop your business in the food supply chain, you need to operate efficiently and to assure the trust of your clients in your operations. You need to maintain your certification uninterrupted and expect from us to plan and perform the audit and certification process smoothly.

To be able to meet your expectations and these of standard owners, we need to assure that the information needed is gathered on time and taken into account throughout the whole certification cycle. We count on you to inform us in due course whenever significant changes occur in your operations during the validity of your certificate. From now on, we will prompt you to send us the information about expected changes in your production much in advance and we will rely on your cooperation and transparency. This will enable us to maintain a predictable and efficient auditing and certification process.

Of course, you will still continue to develop new products and introduce new processes whenever a need for that occurs. Once we are informed about this, we will do our best to take into account these changes and integrate them in the ongoing audit and certification process as much as possible. It is our focus to minimize additional audits and related costs. Whenever the changes are crucial for maintaining and/or extending your scope of certification, extensions are always possible.

To enable these improvements we have changed our cancellation terms from 3 to 6 month in our General Certification Conditions and IFS and BRC Certification agreement terms. You can find their latest versions here: We would like to consider any objections or other feedback you might have about the changes and would like to hear from you till 12.05.2023.

Unannounced audits – ongoing learning and improvements
This year we go together through the challenges of Unannounced audits and only through efficient collaboration, we can assure that the audits are performed consistently. We are really pleased with the results until now. We did not experience critical situations with cancelled or not performed audits and we do not observe an increased number of critical NCs and suspension of certificates due to the unannounced character of the major part of the audits in the current period.

We are aware that this is possible only because of your good preparation and really appreciate your dedicated work. To continue the audit performance even more smoothly, we would like to draw your attention to some lessons learnt and possible improvements in preparing for the unannounced audits from your side:

Assure responsible people are available: Success at an unannounced audit relies upon the ability of the company to share information and knowledge within, to have effective deputies to cover in the absence of a particular manager, and a shared responsibility within the management team for food safety and compliance with the standard.

Assure auditor access and that all your products and technology processes can be demonstrated during the audit: We are aware that some processes are not running 24/7 but you still need to assure the operation of your processes during the audit. For this, the good preparation from your side is key. Think of organizing the prerequisites for full operation during the audit – the delivery of raw materials, the planning of production processes and shifts etc. If a fully operational production is not possible, we may find a solution through scope exclusions and extensions to enable the maintenance of certification for the needed scope.

Boosting the understanding of BRCGS issue 9 requirements
To maintain and boost the understanding of existing and newly introduced requirements in the BRCGS Food safety standard Certima holds the following courses throughout 2023:

  • Issue 9: Conversion for Sites (1 day duration) – 6.06.2023; October 2023
  • Internal auditor course (2 days duration) – 12-13.09.2023;
  • Environmental monitoring – October/November 2023
  • Food Safety Culture – October/November 2023

For the delivery of these courses we collaborate with Mr. Jan Jelle Spit. He is a BRCGS Food safety and S&D auditor and a dedicated and experienced trainer, delivering BRCGS recognized or client specific training courses. His years’ long and diverse industry and auditing experience are invaluable contribution to the competence of Certima team, as well as to our customers.

Expanding our auditor capacity to serve your audits

After finalizing the qualification of our new IFS auditor Mr. Jeroen van Loon in October 2022 who covers a wide range of product and technology scopes, we are announcing a new round of our proven auditor qualification program for IFS & BRC in the Netherlands.

It contains a customized package of focused trainings and exam preparatory activities that have proven their efficiency in our auditor qualification experience in the past 16 years. If you are interested in becoming an IFS or BRC auditor, you can find more information here:  and join our next IFS In-house training course for candidate auditors – coming in September 2023 in English.

Certima Scores High across stakeholders and customers

We published recently our performance report for 2022 based on the positive evaluation of our customers and stakeholders.  Certima holds 5 stars with BRCGS since the beginning of its operation in 2019. At the latest KPI assessment we gained 98.21 % (5 stars requirement is >90). We score with 0 failures on a number of indicators of IFS, and high level of compliance and trust with RvA.

Check out our full performance report here

Please send all arising questions and requests to

Yours truly,

Certima team