BRC Audit Checklists

Digital GFSI certification recordkeeping via mobile device

Published May 3rd, 2021

What is a BRC Audit?

A BRC Audit, or BRC Food Safety Audit, is the British Retail Consortium’s official assessment of a food manufacturer’s adherence to the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety. The BRC has recently released the latest version of their auditing code, Issue 8, and audits in accordance with it began on February 1st, 2019.

This article covers:

  1. What is BRC;
  2. What is BRC Certification;
  3. The similarities and differences between BRC and FSSC 2200;
  4. Key focus areas of BRC;
  5. Technology solutions to help you implement and maintain BRC certification; and
  6. BRC audit checklists you can download and use.

What is BRC?

BRC stands for the British Retail Consortium, a company formed by retailers which created a standard for food safety intended for businesses involved in food production.

What is BRC Certification?

BRC certification is a recognition given to businesses that have been audited and found to have met the BRC global standard for food safety.

BRC vs FSSC 22000

Both schemes require a regularly evaluated and continuously improved upon: 1) food safety management system; 2) good manufacturing, distribution and agricultural practices; and 3) HACCP system.

BRC is more prescriptive on procedures and guidelines to follow for food safety while FSSC 22000 emphasises a framework approach helping a business implement their own system. FSSC 22000 expands upon ISO 22000, so for organizations already down this path, it may make sense to continue with FSSC 22000 certification.

What does BRC focus on?

The latest food safety version of BRC, issue 8, highlights the following requirements:

  1. Senior management commitment – leaders of companies should help ensure the implementation and continuous improvement of food safety processes

  2. HACCP (food safety plan) – implementing HACCP can help identify and manage risks in food production
  3. Food safety and quality management system – proper documentation of processes in place help manage the safety of food production and keep staff properly informed
  4. Site standards – setting and maintaining the ideal site for food production
  5. Product control – setting controls in place such as allergen management and product testing
  6. Process control – this is ensuring that the documented HACCP plan is consistently followed to maintain product quality
  7. Personnel – ensure that employees are trained, wearing PPE, and follow proper hygiene
  8. High Risk, High Care, and Ambient High Care Production Risk Zones – ensure that products susceptible to pathogen contamination have control measures to improve safety
  9. Traded Products – ensure sites that purchase and sell food products properly process and pack them to avoid contamination

The BRC certification process involves a third party audit on-site where all parts of the requirements are assessed. Depending on the assessed grade a re-certification audit will be required every 6 or 12 months.

Preparing for a BRC Audit

Proper documentation and records that prove the consistent implementation of food safety management are a must to show that a business is indeed meeting requirements to get certified for the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety. Collecting documents, manually organizing files, and preparing for a BRC inspection can be daunting.

iAuditor by SafetyCulture can help streamline your data capture and recordkeeping requirements. iAuditor’s mobile app lets you conduct paperless food safety inspections onsite. Look into photo evidence and key findings gathered during inspections and view trends anytime via the web platform.

To save you time, we have created these digital templates you can download and customize for free to assist with your BRC food certification requirements.

SafetyCulture staff writer

Erick Brent Francisco

As a staff writer for SafetyCulture, Erick is interested in learning and sharing how technology can improve work processes and workplace safety. Prior to SafetyCulture, Erick worked in logistics, banking and financial services, and retail.

As a staff writer for SafetyCulture, Erick is interested in learning and sharing how technology can improve work processes and workplace safety. Prior to SafetyCulture, Erick worked in logistics, banking and financial services, and retail.

SafetyCulture staff writer

Erick Brent Francisco

As a staff writer for SafetyCulture, Erick is interested in learning and sharing how technology can improve work processes and workplace safety. Prior to SafetyCulture, Erick worked in logistics, banking and financial services, and retail.

As a staff writer for SafetyCulture, Erick is interested in learning and sharing how technology can improve work processes and workplace safety. Prior to SafetyCulture, Erick worked in logistics, banking and financial services, and retail.