Type of Dialogue
Language of Dialogue Event
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The Global Food Safety Initiative (“GFSI”) is a global multi-stakeholder movement; powered by the Consumer Goods Forum (CGF), enabling extensive collaboration that is critical to ensure a safe global food supply. Since its inception in 2000, GFSI has developed into a community that works on a voluntary basis, in a pre-competitive environment, and comprises of leading food safety experts from retail, manufacturing and food service companies including upstream suppliers as well as international organisations, governments, academia and service providers to the global food industry.
Every action taken by GFSI is directed towards enabling the industry for continuous improvement of their food safety through effective management systems, via its three strategic priorities: harmonisation through benchmarking, strengthening capabilities for food business operators and enhancing a strong collaboration for public-private projects. By harmonising requirements for certification programmes, benchmarking is considered as the appropriate mechanism to address the complex challenges faced by businesses, governments, and society regarding the auditing of food safety systems. Its harmonisation and mutual recognition approach, relying on the consensus of the relevant experts and the participation of the concerned stakeholders, and based on internationally recognised standards such as the Codex Alimentarius, provides a robust programme to reduce inefficiencies and facilitate free and fair trade, whilst enhancing capabilities in the global food supply chain and contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
One of the ways we work to achieve our goals is through capability building. In 2011, GFSI created capability building tools to provide a pathway towards GFSI-recognised certification for companies with less sophisticated food safety systems. This set of guidance and implementation tools, known as the Global Markets Programme, sets out how companies who want to put in place or improve their food safety systems can meet the challenge of food safety while improving market access.
The GFSI Global Markets Programme is an inclusive and open-source programme developed by industry experts.
Importantly, it provides an unaccredited entry point for companies with its step-by-step programme designed to build capacity within primary production and manufacturing operations while implementing a course of continuous improvement.
Along with a public consultation on its GFSI website from February to March 2021, CGF is convening this dialogue to engage stakeholders in re-designing its capability building tool to:
- help small and very small food business operators with less sophisticated food safety management systems to be more ready to tackle tomorrow food safety challenges linked to climate changes and food security within the one health concept
- support regulators and food safety international governmental organization to design and finance easily capability building programme in emerging market to strenghten supply chain and facilitate trade
- ensure safe food for all including: food banks, informal markets and micro-enterprises’ customers, humanitarian beneficiairies and consumers everywhere with no distinction on the safety of the food between exports and domestic consumption (to avoid a two speed system)
- develop leaders and champions in small and very small enterprises by empowering them with appropriate food safety managements systems tools and support them to strenghten food safety culture in their companies, cities, regions, countries
- develop harmonized food safety management systems aligned with the SDGs linked to trade, food safety and food security (especially 2, 3, 12, 17)