26 Nov 2021
by Simon Williams

AIC Schemes Return to Onsite Auditing


AIC Services would like to outline the proposed next steps for the return to on-site auditing. A phased approach is to be adopted and the default position to on-site auditing will vary by Scheme, the table below outlines the timescale and types of audits that will be available from January 2022.
To summarise;
  • FEMAS audits from Jan 2022 will be a full on site audit by default, with an option for a hybrid audit until 1st April 2022.
  • UFAS audits from January 2022 will be a hybrid audit by default with an option for fully remote until 1st March, after which the default will be full on site audits with an option for hybrid.
  • TASCC Haulage & Merchant audits from Jan 2022 will either be hybrid or fully remote.
  • TASCC Storage & Testing, and ESTA audits from Jan 2022 will either be a full on-site or hybrid audit.
  • FIAS Manufacturer and Storage audits from Jan 2022 will be fully on-site by default with an option for hybrid.
  • FIAS Merchant and Transport audits from Jan 2022 will be either hybrid or fully remote. 

From April 2022 all audits will revert to being conducted on-site.

If you are in a Scheme where the schedule does not return to on-site auditing until April and you wish to request the audit to be in person on-site, please contact the certification body. Prior to visiting sites auditors will undertake a risk assessment to ensure that any Covid-19 risk is minimised for themselves and the company being audited. Participants are responsible for the Covid-19 risk assessments of their sites and the implementation of any social distancing procedures or wearing of PPE.

AIC's aim is to ensure the safety of both the auditor and the participant from Covid-19, whilst ensuring that standards are upheld within the agri-supply sector. Certified companies will still have access to, and the use of, the on-line portals to submit documents before their audit allowing it to take place in the most efficient way. The post-audit submission of corrective actions will continue to be carried out via the on-line portal.

Any requests for derogations from this approach will need to be submitted to the relevant Certification Body along with justification for the derogation, decisions will be made on a case by case basis after consultation with AIC.

AIC are continually reviewing the latest Government advice on the COVID-19 pandemic and will be guided by the Government in this area.  AIC will closely monitor the situation and keep participants informed of any changes.


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Simon Williams

Simon Williams

Technical Manager, AIC Services

Simon Williams is Technical Manager for AIC Services. He is based at AIC Head Office, Peterborough and is responsible for the management and coordination of the FEMAS and UFAS assurance schemes as well as being the key contact for mutual recognition with European scheme owners and managing Earned Recognition relationships with UK feed and food competent authorities.

Previous to his role with AIC, Simon was employed in a variety of technical roles in the food industry covering primary and further processing of meat, breakfast cereals and a product technologist role with a major retailer.

[email protected]
01733 385245

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