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FSSC 22000 is one of the fastest-growing members of the GFSI CPO family. Since the independent Foundation FSSC 22000 published the first version of their food safety system certification programme in 2009, over 20,000 sites have received certification under the programme’s seven scopes. For these sites, which span the world from Africa to the Americas, GFSI-recognised certification through FSSC 22000 serves as a gateway to markets both within and beyond their own borders.

Today on the GFSI Experts Series, we meet Cor Groenveld, Market Development Director at FSSC 22000. Cor has been involved in FSSC 22000 from the start of the programme 10 years ago and has acted as Market Development Director for the past 3 years. In addition to supporting the development of the FSSC 22000 programme, he has also served on technical committees at ISO and GFSI. He is well-placed to explain the relationship between GFSI and FSSC 22000, as well as the benefits of GFSI recognition for CPOs. Watch his interview on GFSI Youtube, or read the transcript below.

Could you please introduce yourself and your role at FSSC 22000?

I’m Cor Groenveld, and my name is Dutch, so you can call me Cor Greenfield in English. I’m the Market Development Director for FSSC 22000, and I’ve been doing that for almost 3 years already.

Can you tell us more about FSSC 22000?

FSSC 22000 is a certification programme. It is for food safety management systems, and it was developed about 10 years ago. It’s based on ISO standards. ISO 22000 is the food safety management systems standard used all over the world, and the industry wanted to use the ISO 22000. We supported them, and we developed a certification programme. So it’s fully ISO-based, and it’s owned and governed by a nonprofit foundation.

Why did you decide to get GFSI recognition for FSSC 22000?

The GFSI recognition is very important for us, and we’re very proud to have been a member of the GFSI family for a long time, because what GFSI brings is the mutual recognition of certification around the world. It supports a lot of initiatives and projects to support small and medium enterprises, like the Global Markets Programme, but also makes sure that we speak the same language around the world on food safety. Also, for our users — the manufacturers, the retailers, all those users of FSSC 22000 — it brings standardisation of food safety in the food supply chain. And we very much appreciate being a member of GFSI and having GFSI recognition.

What are the key benefits of being GFSI recognised?

The GFSI recognition shows that our programme meets the GFSI requirements, and I think that is a very important thing for us. It also gives confidence in the certification process. Certification is nice, but reliable certification, that is the most important. We have more than 1500 auditors doing FSSC 22000, and to make sure that they are doing a good job, we need to make sure that they also meet those requirements.

It also brings us the Global Food Safety Initiative. We are also truly global. We have now almost 20,000 certificates, and we are 10 years young. One third are in North and South America, one third are in Europe and Africa, and one third are in Asia and the Pacific. So it’s really around the globe. And that’s why we also have now local representatives.

We have now local representatives for FSSC in North America in Washington, in South America in Mexico. Also, we now have a local representative in Japan. I’m very proud of that. In China, we have a local representative, and we’re working for India to also have a local representative. So we follow the Global Food Safety Initiative towards being a true global programme for all users in the food supply chain.

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To learn more about GFSI’s CPOs and how they benefit from recognition, watch our previous interview with CanadaGAP, and keep an eye out for upcoming episodes with CPOs like the Global Aquaculture Alliance, GlobalGAP and IFS. Follow #GFSIexperts on TwitterFacebook or LinkedIn

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