The objective of the GFSI annual assessment of GFSI recognised schemes is to assess the continued compliance of the schemes with the GFSI Guidance Document and to maintain the confidence and integrity of GFSI and the GFSI recognised schemes.
A GFSI Assessor shall be appointed by GFSI. The GFSI Assessor has the responsibility for carrying out an assessment of the GFSI recognised scheme’s compliance with the GFSI Guidance Document. The appointment shall be made with due consideration to the competence of the assessor, any potential conflict of interest and the activities of the scheme in question.
The review shall be undertaken to assess compliance against the requirements of GFSI Guidance Document Part II Requirements for the Management of Schemes and the appropriate sections of GFSI Guidance Document Part III Scheme Scope and Key Elements and the GFSI Agreement or Memorandum of Understanding (available from the secretariat upon request). The review shall be conducted on an annual basis on the anniversary of the date of initial GFSI recognition.
The review shall take the form of;
- an annual self-assessment against defined criteria,
- an office assessment of a scheme’s management system and operation to be carried out once within a four year period based on the anniversary of the date of initial GFSI recognition. The date of this review will be at the discretion of the GFSI Board, but the scheme owner will be notified of the date of the review.
With respect to the annual self-assessment, the GFSI Assessor will review the self-assessment documentation and notify GFSI of any issues identified by the review.
With respect to the office assessment the GFSI Assessor shall visit the registered office of the scheme owner and assess objective evidence of compliance of the scheme’s management system with the GFSI Guidance Document and the GFSI Agreement or Memorandum of Understanding. The GFSI Assessor shall formally report the findings of the review to GFSI.
In the event that the annual assessment establishes that there are significant concerns with the compliance of the scheme with the GFSI Guidance Document or the GFSI Agreement or Memorandum of Understanding, the nominated GFSI Assessor will make GFSI aware of his / her concerns, so that the agreement of the GFSI Board may be sought as to any appropriate actions.
Action may involve further verification of compliance, assurances of compliance and reassessment and the withdrawal or suspension of recognition. The scheme owner shall have the right of appeal against the GFSI Board decision and the appeal shall be undertaken in accordance with the procedures specified in the GFSI Guidance Document Part I Annex 3 The GFSI Appeals Procedure - GFSI Benchmarking. In addition to the annual assessment, the scheme owner shall provide an annual report of their activities at the request of GFSI (circulated on an annual basis to all GFSI recognised scheme owners).