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Thursday, 29 September 2016

Disclosures about Audit Scheme Effectiveness

Think back to the discussion under the heading “Common Failure” in this 2014 post "Standardized Food Industry Mistake". It appears that SQFI has started to collect and publish the kinds of helpful data that I envisaged. What do the SQFI data show? On the IFSQN website, I stumbled upon this presentation by LeAnn Chuboff, Senior Technical Director,SQFI

Never mind the slides with survey reports. They merely show evidence of embellished opinions of survey respondents. Take a look at slides 8 and 9. Although the data sources (e.g. countries or regions involved) have not been clearly explained, the information on these slides appear to be less biased. Aside from the anticipated twists and/or rationalizations to follow these sorts of data by the presenters, the information presented gives a picture to guide decision-making about the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of the scheme. Looking at the drop in the total number of recalls may be encouraging but percentage data (a more accurate picture) quickly dulls the enthusiasm.

Understandably, we need similar data from other competing schemes to compare. So the challenge stands: All schemes should publish their relevant and unembellished data. I wonder how many schemes are going to take up this challenge.

For ideas about other parameters to use in assessing the effectiveness of the schemes, read this other 2014 post Common Assumptions about Food Safety and Quality Management. It is great to see that these posts are remaining relevant in the Myth Discourse that started more than 3 years ago.
Posted by Felix Amiri
Felix Amiri is currently the chair of GCSE-Food & Health Protection, and a sworn SSQA advocate.

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