A newly published document in the ISO 22000 series gives the requirements for the bodies that carry out auditing and certification of food safety management systems (FSMS).

Certification to ISO 22000:2005, Food safety management systems - Requirements for any organization in the food chain, is not a requirement of that standard, which can be implemented solely for the benefits it provides. However, where certification is required by customers, or by regulators, or is judged desirable as a marketing differ.

Certification to ISO 22000:2005, Food safety management systems - Requirements for any organization in the food chain, is not a requirement of that standard, which can be implemented solely for the benefits it provides. However, where certification is required by customers, or by regulators, or is judged desirable as a marketing differentiator, ISO/TS 22003:2007 will help to build confidence in such certification throughout the food supply chain.
Comprising 10 clauses, two annexes and a bibliography, ISO/TS 22003 covers topics such as resource requirements, competence of management and personnel (including auditors and persons involved in decisions related to certification), process requirements and requirements for certification bodies. It closely follows the requirements established by ISO 17021:2006, Conformity assessment - Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems, which places rigorous requirements for competence and impartiality on the bodies that offer audit and certification to management system standards.

ISO/TS 22003 is the latest document in the ISO series for food safety management systems, which harmonizes good food safety practice worldwide. It was launched in 2005 with ISO 22000, backed by an international consensus among experts from government and industry.

ISO 22000 can be applied to organizations ranging from feed producers and primary producers through food manufacturers, transport and storage operators, and subcontractors to retail and food service outlets. Related organizations such as producers of equipment, packaging material, cleaning agents, additives and ingredients are also affected by the prospective standard.

The standard was followed by technical specification ISO/TS 22004:2005, Food safety management systems - Guidance on the application of ISO 22000:2005, which gives advice for all types of organization within the food supply chain on how to implement an FSMS. A related publication will be published shortly, ISO 22000 - Are you ready? which provides organizations with self-assessment guidance to establish whether they are ready for ISO 22000 certification.

ISO/TS 22003:2007, Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of food safety management systems, was developed by ISO technical committee ISO/TC 34, Food products, in collaboration with ISO/CASCO, Committee on conformity assessment. It costs 84 Swiss francs and is available from ISO national member institutes (see the complete list with contact details) and ISO Central Secretariat (see below).