Agro Sevilla obtains again the A + certificate for BRC and Higher Level for IFS

Agro Sevilla

Agro Sevilla Aceitunas has been distinguished again with the Grade A+ for BRC and Higher Level for IFS, after satisfactorily passing the audit corresponding to both food safety standards. These certificates are a guarantee of prestige for those companies that obtain them.

The BRC certificate is one of the most important internationally and was developed in response to the demand of retailers to ensure that their suppliers meet their strict food safety requirements. Its popularity is very high in the Commonwealth as well as in Asian countries.

The IFS Food Standard was developed by the Federal Union of the German Trade Association (BDH) and the French Federation of Commerce and Distribution (FDC) with the aim of creating a common reference in terms of food safety. This is the standard of reference in other European countries such as Belgium, Holland or Italy.

The IFS standard not only ensures food safety for the consumer, but also the level of quality of the facilities and manufacturing processes and management.
For Agro Sevilla, both certifications mean an additional merit, since the audit was carried out under the unannounced audit modality, which implies impeccable maintenance throughout the year. According to José Antonio Fernández, Quality Director of the Agro Sevilla olive factory in La Roda de Andalucía, "this result implies a collective achievement, the result of collaboration and the daily work of everyone."

On the occasion of this event, José Antonio Fernández reveals some details about the audit and the milestones achieved in recent years.

What aspects of the production process have been monitored during the BRC / IFS audit?

"This is the same audit but under two different food safety standards, BRC and IFS, in which compliance with the requirements of these standards is verified through the inspection of a wide range of activities of the company, among which there are all the production processes (evaluation and control of suppliers, processing of the olives, raw material storage, oxidation, packaging, sterilization / pasteurization, packing, storage of finished product, shipment).

The audit also covers those aspects directly related to food safety such as cleaning and hygiene, pest control, allergen management, prevention of contamination by foreign objects, chemical and microbiological analysis, fraud prevention, process control and surveillance of critical points, etc; and other technical aspects no less important, such as the maintenance of facilities and equipment, the calibration of monitoring and measuring devices, process validation, water control, waste management, compliance with regulations, etc."

What milestones have been achieved in the Quality Control department in recent years?

"The main advance has been the computerization of the records, the modernization of the analysis techniques, as well as the integration of their work together with the production department."

What are the next targets?

"The main goal that we have set is based on the optimization of thermal processes of pasteurization and sterilization, and we seek a reduction of acrylamide, taking into account that, although it is not yet a very important component in olives as in other foods (fried foods, baked goods, etc.), it is something that will be regulated over time."

This new recognition is added to the one already achieved last April by the olive oil factory of Agro Sevilla, which obtained the highest BRC / IFS (AA +) recognition.