Internal Audits

An annual check against all the requirements in any 2nd or 3rd party standard is of great value as a gap analysis when preparing for an audit.


Many 2nd and 3rd party standards require that audits are carried out on at least four different audit dates spread throughout the year to provide an in-depth assessment of your Food Safety & Quality Management System.


The frequency at which each activity is audited must be established in relation to the risks associated with the activity and any previous audit performance, and all activities must be covered at least once each year. For example, higher-risk areas, such as CCPs, hygiene procedures and incoming goods should be audited more frequently than lower-risk areas such as management review or complaints.


Internal audits must be carried out by appropriately trained, competent auditors, independent of the process being audited to ensure that the audit is rigorous, unbiased and thorough.


FSQ Ltd. offers the following services to help your business establish a thorough, independent and effective internal audit programme:


  • Gap assessment against 2nd or 3rd party standards as preparation for your annual audit or when standards are updated.

  • Support the development of a risk-based internal audit programme and schedule

  • Provide an independent, experienced auditor

  • Conduct documented audits on a monthly, bi-monthly or quarterly basis

  • Manage non-conformances to satisfactory close out with the process owner

  • Conduct issue-based audits related to internal non-conformances or complaint investigation

  • Coach site internal auditors to help audits become more effective

  • Provide summary reports for the senior management team’s management review, detailing non-conformities, corrective actions taken, root cause analysis, and deviations from the audit programme.




Foreign Matter Audits


Glass and other foreign matter, such as wood, metal, plastic, cardboard and insects are a major cause of complaints and product recalls.


An effective foreign matter management program will minimise business disruption, prevent non-conforming product and prevent an internal contamination or breakage incident from becoming an external crisis.


An independent audit of site foreign matter controls can detect gaps in systems or implementation of controls before they lead to non-conforming product, complaints or recalls. The audit includes an independent review of:


  • glass, wood, hard and soft plastic management

  • pre-operational inspection effectiveness

  • maintenance activities

  • sanitation activities

  • personnel practices

  • pest management

  • waste management

  • foreign matter complaint trending and corrective and preventive actions

  • foreign matter prevention, detection and removal device location, settings and operation


A specific review focused on glass, brittle plastics, ceramics and similar materials will:


  • advise on removal of glass where possible and appropriate breakage protection measures where removal is not possible

  • advise on glass cleaning and replacement procedures to minimise risk

  • check the accuracy and detail of the glass register

  • risk assessment of glass

  • advise on the frequency of glass audits based on risk

  • check glass audit records for accuracy and completion

  • check that staff are fully trained in the event of a glass breakage


Reports on both foreign matter and glass focused audits will provide details of any areas for improvement and recommendations on industry best practice.




Pest Management Audits and Inspections


Many pest management contractors are diligent and proactive but your site pest management status is reliant on local technician skill, management of the local technician and the contractor, and site proofing and housekeeping status.


With vast experience in milling, bakeries and warehousing, poultry, salad and dairy sites, FSQ Ltd. can provide an independent review of your site pest management status and provide on-site pest management awareness training and competency assessments. Services include:


  • Investigation of site and storage facility pest issues and incidents

  • Review of pest management system against 2nd and 3rd party standards

  • Audit of pest management programme effectiveness on site

  • Audit of external pest management contractor service against service level agreement

  • Internal staff training and competency assessments