ISO/TS 22003 for Food Safety Audits

A newly published document in the ISO 22000 series gives the requirements for the bodies that carry out auditing and certification of food safety management systems.

ISO/TS 22003:2007 defines the rules applicable for the audit and certification of a food safety management system (FSMS) that complies with the requirements given in ISO 22000:2005. It also provides confidence to customers about the way certification of their suppliers has been granted.

FSMS certification does not attest to the safety or fitness of the products of an organization within the food chain. However, ISO 22000 does requires an organization to meet all applicable food-safety-related statutory and regulatory requirements through its management system.

ISO/TS 22003 covers topics such as resource requirements, competence of management and personnel (including auditors and persons involved in decisions related to certification), process requirements, and requirements for certification bodies. It closely follows the requirements established by ISO 17021:2006, which places rigorous requirements for competence and impartiality on the bodies that offer audit and certification to management system standards.

ISO/TS 22003 is the latest document in the ISO series for food safety management systems, which harmonizes good food safety practice worldwide. It was launched in 2005 with ISO 22000, backed by an international consensus among experts from government and industry.

ISO 22000 can be applied to organizations ranging from feed producers and primary producers through food manufacturers, transport and storage operators, and subcontractors to retail and food service outlets. Related organizations such as producers of equipment, packaging material, cleaning agents, additives and ingredients are also affected by the prospective standard.

The ISO 22000 standard was followed by technical specification ISO/TS 22004:2005 which gives advice for all types of organization within the food supply chain on how to implement an FSMS.

ISO/FDIS 22005:2007, Traceability in the feed and food chain — General principles and basic requirements for system design and implementation, is planned for publication in September, 2007.