Application Submission - New Scheme
Before a new scheme can consider coming to GFSI for benchmarking, there are several criteria that must be fulfilled:
- Is the scheme publicly available and certifiable, without restriction by membership or other limitation, to certification bodies?
- Do the certification bodies operating a certification system have accreditation to the scope of the relevant scheme?
- Is the accreditation body providing accreditation to the certification bodies a member of the International Accreditation Forum and is the accreditation body in question also signed up to the Multi Lateral Arrangement of ISO/IEC 65 or ISO 17021?
- Has the scheme been developed in compliance with ISO Guide 65 or ISO 17021?
- Have you completed the clause-by-clause comparison of your scheme with the Guidance Document in the GFSI Benchmarking Application?
- Has the scheme scope been defined as in the GFSI Benchmarking Application Form on Tab 1?
- If there are any anomalies with the Guidance Document, can you provide argumentation to justify compliance?
- Can you provide the written support from at least three user organisations representing the retail / food service or producing / manufacturing sectors that use who or are going to use the scheme?
If you can reply positively to ALL of the above questions, and you meet the requirements in the GFSI Guidance Document Sixth Edition Part II Clause 1.2.1 outlined below, you can then proceed with the submission of your scheme to GFSI. Email
for a full Application Dossier which includes information on the fees involved in the GFSI Benchmarking Process as well as a copy of the GFSI and Scheme Owner Agreement.
GFSI Guidance Document Sixth Edition Part II Clause 1.2.1
- There is commitment from a minimum of three user organisations representing the retail / food service or iproducing / manufacturing sectors that use, or are going to use the scheme.
- There is agreement with one or more Accreditation Bodies for Certification Bodies to operate to ISO/IEC Guide 65 or ISO /IEC 17021:2006 (supplemented by ISO/TS 22003) for the scope of their scheme. The decision as to the most appropriate generic standard to be used to accredit Certification Bodies for the scope of a scheme shall be made in consultation with Accreditation Bodies, but the final decision shall rest with the Accreditation Bodies. Where the scheme owner has agreements with two or more Accreditation Bodies, the use of the accreditation standard must be the same irrespective of the Accreditation Body and it is incumbent on the scheme owner to ensure that consistency of decision making exists between Accreditation Bodies. The Accreditation Bodies granting accreditation to the scope of the scheme shall be members of the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) and shall be signatories to the Multilateral Recognition Arrangement (MLA).
- There are contractual relationships with at least two Certification Bodies that have accreditation for the scope of the scheme with an Accreditation Body.
- The scheme has been operational for a period of twelve months prior to the date of application. During this period, certificates shall be issued to a variety of organisations. A scheme is deemed to become operational on the date on which the first accredited certificate is issued by a Certification Body.
- The scheme has in place ten accredited certificates for single site audits (for the relevant scope of the application) issued by at least two Certification Bodies, including at least one certificate issued by each Certification Body during a twelve month period prior to the date of the application (to fulfill the criteria above).
Application to GFSI
A fully completed application will include:
- The completed GFSI Benchmarking Application Form (including examples of objective evidence to support the key requirements for Tabs 1 - 6 as applicable), filling out:
- Tab 1: General Information
- Tab 2: Application Req New Scheme
- Tab 5: Scheme Management
- Tab 6: Food Safety Schemes - Systems
- Tabs 7 - 18 as appropriate depending on the scope of the scheme
- A Table of Contents that references each piece of objective evidence submitted against its reference in the GFSI Benchmarking Application Form.
Consult the Benchmarking Application Completion Guidelines for support in completing the GFSI Benchmarking Application Form.
Two copies of the entire application in hard copy, as well as an electronic version of all documentation, shall be sent to:
Global Food Safety Initiative
c/o the Consumer Goods Forum
22/24 rue du Gouverneur Général Eboué