A system for internal auditing is not just a best practice for well-run food safety management. For Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI)-benchmarked standards, it is a requirement. Before deciding your organization’s internal auditing plan, take the time to understand your options.
First, an internal audit program should focus upon agreed upon requirements for all stakeholders within the organization, starting with senior and plant leadership. The establishment of food safety objectives are an important part of any food safety management program and a requirement for all food safety certification audits.
Key Considerations for Planning
- The internal auditor must maintain confidentiality and consider any conflict of interest. How will independence be maintained for all areas, including the responsibilities of the internal audit team?
- What are the objectives of your internal audit program? To ensure compliance with existing procedures? To measure process effectiveness?
- When setting the objective of the internal auditing program, will the program follow system reviews or be inspection-based, or both?
Each food safety standard has specific guidance as you build your internal audit program, so refer to the respective code as you plan.
FoodChain ID Academy offers a self-paced, online course to educate organizations setting up an internal auditing system. Introduction to Internal Auditing introduces the principles and terminology of internal auditing. The course provides the basic elements necessary to build a program that meets GFSI-benchmarked standards’ requirements for an internal audit program.