GFSI is proud to announce that the new GFSI Knowledge Exam is now available to be taken. This tool, which the 6 March 2018 announcement of the GFSI Benchmarking Requirements Version 7.2 mentioned as the GFSI Auditor Exam, offers a consistent method to assess auditor knowledge across a range of relevant skills for all GFSI-recognised programmes, ensuring a baseline of expertise amongst this important community.
The GFSI Knowledge Exam draws from the content of the Benchmarking Requirements Version 7.2. The scope of the exam will be familiar to auditors acquainted with the content of GFSI's recognised certification programmes. Questions cover both sector-specific technical skills, such as Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) and Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) requirements, as well as standard auditing skills such as sampling and evidence gathering.
The number of GFSI-recognised CPOs and the number of certificates that these organisations deliver each year continue to accelerate; in 2018 alone, 2 new CPOs were recognised and the number of certificates increased by 5% worldwide. In order to ensure consistency of approach despite this growth, the Benchmarking Requirements now require auditors to take and pass the GFSI Knowledge Exam, to complement the already existing clear GFSI requirements for education and experience. Auditors who fulfil all these conditions will be well-equipped to perform their role at the frontline of food safety.
The GFSI Knowledge Exam requirement will go into effect on the 1st of July. After this date, all newly-recruited auditors must pass the Knowledge Exam before they can begin auditing for GFSI-recognised certification programmes. All current auditors, meanwhile, have until the end of 2021 to take the test. Despite this two-year grace period, the process of assessing all new and current auditors will be no small task.
To mitigate the scale of this undertaking, the Benchmarking Requirements include a mutual recognition of exam results between CPOs. In other words, an auditor that has taken the exam with one CPO cannot have his or her results rejected by a different CPO; each auditor will therefore only need to pass the exam once. This streamlined process is in keeping with GFSI's dedication to efficiency and enhancing global food safety through harmonisation.
To apply to take the GFSI Knowledge Exam, please schedule an appointment with your approved CPO. A list of CPOs who have been approved to provide the tests can be found here. The exam is available to take in several languages, including: