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International Food Standard (IFS)

YEAR THE IFS STANDARD WAS INTRODUCED: 2003

SCOPE: ‘Packaging of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Arbequina Oil smoked with oak wood, Arbequina Oil with essential oils, Arbequina Oil Infused with spices, Arbequina Oil with plankton in glass bottles, Virgin Olive Oil Extra and Extra Virgin Olive Oil packaged in plastic containers or aluminium cans.’

OUTLINE AND GOALS OF THE STANDARD: The International Food Standard (IFS) is a quality and food safety standard for retailer branded food products that was developed by the associated members of the German Retail Federation, Handelsverband Deutschland (HDE), and by its French counterpart, Fédération des Entreprises du Commerce et de la Distribution (FCD). Their main goals are:

 

 

  • To establish a common standard with a uniform evaluation system.
  • To work with approved certification bodies and qualified auditors that have been approved by the IFS.
  • To ensure comparability and transparency throughout the entire supply chain.
  • To reduce costs and time for both suppliers and retailers.

IFS Management GmbH – a company owned by FCD and HDE – now manages the IFS, applying the standard to all the post farm-gate stages of food handling. IFS Food Standard has been benchmarked against the GFSI Guidance Document and is recognised by GFSI (Global Food Safety Initiative).

THE GROUP’S INTERNAL REASONS FOR IMPLEMENTATION: In a globalised market like today’s – where customers are not always physically within our immediate geographical sphere – controlling food safety cannot be merely limited to abiding by the law, which, of course, must be unquestionable, but it is also essential to demonstrate in an in-depth and comprehensive way that products are safe. Thus, to demonstrate a higher level of control when it comes to food safety, our company has adopted very strict quality standards that are specifically recognised by certain markets.

Aceite Arbequino con Plancton Marino

Aceite Arbequina con HarissaThis is the case of the IFS (International Food Standard) that is currently the most widespread and recognised when it comes to food safety in the European market (mainly in Germany and France), although it should be mentioned that it is a benchmark standard of the entire continent and is becoming ever more recognised and respected by the rest of the world.

Due to this, and among the main reasons for which the Castillo de Canena Group implemented this food health and safety standard, the following should be highlighted:

 

  • Defining all of the processes needed by our company in order to manage our food quality and safety system.
  • Determining the sequence and interaction of these processes by properly managing them from the moment the olives are delivered.
  • Determining the necessary criteria and methods to ensure the efficient running of our company and controlling these processes all the way to the end product.
  • Ensuring the availability of the necessary information to facilitate the running and monitoring of these processes while guaranteeing compliance with all the legal requirements that are applicable to the company’s activity, in particular those related to the health and self-assessment standards to which the food industry is subject to.
  • Measuring, monitoring and analysing these processes, and implementing the necessary actions to achieve the envisaged results as well as a continuous improvement by efficiently integrating the self-assessment system into the general dynamic of our company.

Broadly speaking, this standard is used to assess whether the different parts of the Group’s quality and food safety management system are continuously documented, implemented, maintained and improved. Castillo de Canena therefore constantly renews and factors in the following points:

  • Organisational structure in relation to the responsibility, authority, qualification and description of job positions.
  • Documentary procedures and instructions connected to their implementation.
  • Inspection and testing: specific requirements and defined criteria of acceptance and tolerance.
  • Actions to take in the case of non-conformity, and investigation of the causes behind said non-conformity and the introduction of corrective measures.
  • Conformity analysis of the safety and quality data, and review of how they are implemented in practice.
  • Handling, storage and compilation of the food quality and safety registers, as well as information on the traceability and monitoring of documents.

Given that all processes and procedures must be clear, concise and unequivocal, this has allowed us to ensure that the staff responsible understand the principles behind the quality and food safety management system. All of this has guaranteed that the Castillo de Canena Group has significantly improved its internal discipline, the traceability of processes at all levels, and access to different markets.

ACTIVITY INVOLVED: Packaging

FIRST YEAR IT WAS OBTAINED BY CASTILLO DE CANENA: 2012

CERTIFICATION BODY: Det Norske Veritas (DNV)

 

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