PARIS and GENEVA, 24th June 2015 — The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) and the International Trade Centre (ITC) today launched a free public customized joint online application of the Global Markets Programme (www.standardsmap.org/mygfsi). It is designed to bolster the competitiveness of small- and medium-sized (SME) agribusinesses, enabling them to better access global markets and contribute to food safety.
This free public tool serves as a first entry point for food manufacturers to learn and adhere to best food safety practices, generate diagnostic profiles directly online and be able to share those with business partners and auditing organizations.
This new tool will help private companies to collaborate on food safety with the UN, civil society and other stakeholders. It complements existing initiatives that advance food safety in food and agriculture sectors.
The GFSI Global Markets Programme sets out how smaller food companies can meet the challenge of food safety, while simultaneously reducing hazards in global food supply chains and working towards market access through certification to one of the 10 GFSI-recognised schemes. It provides an unaccredited entry point for SMEs with its step-by-step programme designed to build capacity within production and manufacturing operations, and implement a course of continuous improvement. GFSI and ITC Standards Map are a natural fit and working towards similar goals.
Therefore, ITC Head of Trade for Sustainable Development Programme Joseph Wozniak and GFSI Board of directors agreed that ITC would leverage its Standards Map tool and Trade for Sustainable Development (T4SD) platform to disseminate the GFSI Global Markets Programme globally. GFSI has facilitated the development of the Global Markets Programme through an inclusive multi-stakeholder process including a number of businesses, UN agencies and civil society organizations involved in agriculture, nutrition and food systems.
“ITC plays a critical role in enabling SME competitiveness locally and globally”, said Véronique Discours-Buhot, GFSI Director at The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF). “We are pleased to partner with them to leverage the GFSI Global Markets Programme through the ITC Standards Map, and support SME agribusinesses on a pathway to certification, market access and safer food worldwide.”
Joseph Wozniak, Head of ITC’s Trade for Sustainable Development Programme, noted: “The Global Food Safety Initiative Global Markets Programme is the essence of how responsible agribusiness should operate and successfully access international supply chains.”
The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) is an industry-driven initiative providing thought leadership and guidance on food safety management systems necessary for safety along the supply chain. This work is accomplished through collaboration between the world’s leading food safety experts from retail, manufacturing and food service companies, as well as international organisations, governments, academia and service providers to the global food industry. They meet together at technical working group and stakeholder meetings, conferences and regional events to share knowledge and promote a harmonized approach to managing food safety across the industry.
GFSI is managed by The Consumer Goods Forum (the CGF), a global, parity-based industry network that is driven by its members to encourage the global adoption of practices and standards that serves the consumer goods industry worldwide. It brings together the CEOs and senior management of some 400 retailers, manufacturers, service providers, and other stakeholders across 70 countries, and it reflects the diversity of the industry in geography, size, product category and format. Its member companies have combined sales of EUR 2.5 trillion and directly employ nearly 10 million people, with a further 90 million related jobs estimated along the value chain. It is governed by its Board of Directors, which comprises 50 manufacturer and retailer CEOs. www.theconsumergoodsforum.com
ABOUT THE INTERNATIONAL TRADE CENTRE
ITC is the joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations. ITC assists small and medium-sized enterprises in developing and transition economies to become more competitive in global markets, thereby contributing to sustainable economic development within the frameworks of the Aid-for-Trade agenda and the Millennium Development Goals.
For more information, please visit www.intracen.org