QM QualityManual ED en FLO CERT GmbH by liaoqinmei

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									                         Quality Manual




Version 50/ 03.01.2011     Quality Manual   1
        Change History:

          Version    Author / Reviser   Date approved   Changes
                                                        Quality policy revised; mission and vision added; Appeals, Reviews, Complaints and Allegations processes
          48         I. Markova         25.03.2010      included; scope of certification added; organisational chart included; document structure revised; history
                                                        of FT Certification included; Supervisory board; numbering amended

                                                        Amendments in section 2.6.2 The Team; FLO-CERT Purpose added in Section 2.1; Section 3.3.3 QMS Non-
          49         I. Markova         10.09.2010
                                                        conformities new.

                                                        QM document names corrected (e.g. GD replaced with ED); Section 3.2.1 amended: no more connection
          50         K. Mercier         15.12.2010
                                                        between certification cycle (3 years) and validity period of certificate (4 years)




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                                                               Table of Contents
          1  Welcome to Fairtrade Certification................................ 4             2.5.2 The Supervisory Board ....................................... 19
           1.1 What is Fairtrade Certification? ................................ 5            2.5.3 The Finance Committee ..................................... 19
           1.2 How are FLO-CERT’s keywords defined? ...................... 6                  2.5.4 The Certification Committee ............................... 20
             1.2.1 What are Fairtrade Standards?............................... 6             2.5.5 The Appeals Committee ..................................... 20
             1.2.2 What are FLO-CERT Compliance Criteria?.................. 6                 2.5.6 The Review Committee ...................................... 20
             1.2.3 Who are Operators?............................................ 6         2.6 Who are FLO-CERT’s Actors? ................................... 21
           1.3 What is the scope of our certification?........................ 7              2.6.1 The Quality Management Representative ................. 21
             1.3.1 Product scope .................................................. 7         2.6.2 The Team ...................................................... 21
             1.3.2 Setups ........................................................... 8       2.6.3 The Auditors ................................................... 21
             1.3.3 Geographical area ............................................. 9       3 What we do and how we do it? .................................... 22
          2 Who are we? .......................................................... 10       3.1 How is the certification process setup? ...................... 22
           2.1 What is out Vision and Mission?................................ 10           3.2 What are the Certification Cycles?............................ 23
             2.1.1 FLO-CERT Purpose ............................................ 10           3.2.1 Three year certification cycle .............................. 23
             2.1.2 Vision ........................................................... 10      3.2.2 Six year certification cycle for small Licensees .......... 24
             2.1.3 Mission.......................................................... 10       3.2.3 Requirements for producers................................. 24
           2.2 What is our Quality Policy? ..................................... 10         3.3 What is the Quality Management System? ................... 25
           2.3 How is FLO-CERT incorporated in the Fairtrade setup? .... 11                   3.3.1 Document and Record Control .............................. 25
             2.3.1 FLO Board ...................................................... 11        3.3.2 Document Structure and Purpose of QM documents..... 26
             2.3.2 Fairtrade Labelling Organisations (FLO e.V.) ............. 11              3.3.3 QMS Non-conformities........................................ 27
             2.3.3 Producer Networks ........................................... 12           3.3.4 Internal Audits ................................................ 27
             2.3.4 Labelling Initiatives (LIs) .................................... 12        3.3.5 Quality Checks ................................................ 27
           2.4 How is FLO-CERT GmbH setup? ................................ 13                3.3.6 Appeals, Reviews, Complaints and Allegations ........... 27
             2.4.1 Legal Status and Headquarter .............................. 13             3.3.7 Management Reviews ........................................ 28
             2.4.2 Organizational Structure..................................... 14           3.3.8 Confidentiality ................................................ 28
             2.4.3 Roles and Responsibilities ................................... 19          3.3.9 Certificate Control............................................ 28
             2.4.4 Subcontracting ................................................ 19         3.3.10Publications.................................................... 29
           2.5 How does FLO-CERT’s Governance Structure look like?.... 19                  Quality Policy ............................................................. 30
             2.5.1 The Senior Management Team.............................. 19

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        1 Welcome to Fairtrade Certification
         “Fair Trade is a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency and respect, that seeks greater equity in international
         trade. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better trading conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized
         producers and workers – especially in the South. Fair Trade Organizations, backed by consumers, are engaged actively in
         supporting producers, awareness raising and in campaigning for changes in the rules and practice of conventional international
         trade. Fair Trade products are produced and traded in accordance with these principles - wherever possible verified by credible,
         independent assurance systems.”                                                                                         FINE, 2006

         History…
         In the 1960s many different initiatives around the world started to develop goals and strategies to support small farmers and
         workers in the global south in line with economical principles following the concept “Trade not Aid”. They focused on elements
         such as the elimination of middlemen, implementation of minimum prices and trade standards, including ethically acceptable
         working conditions. After having started with a product palette of handcrafts in so called Worldshops the product portfolio got
         extended to food products in order to offer Fair Trade products on an every day basis to the consumer, therefore broaden the
         movement and put it on a more solid basis.

         History of FLO Fairtrade…
         In 1992 about 10 national initiatives worldwide allied and founded the non-profit association TransFair International. In 1997
         TransFair and multiple other Labelling Initiatives from all over the world such as Fairtrade Foundation UK and Rättvisemärkt from
         Sweden got together to strengthen their impact and become more acknowledged. They created Fairtrade Labelling Organisations
         International (FLO e.V.), an umbrella organisation whose mission is to set standards, coordinate relationship with producers and
         harmonise the Fairtrade message across the movement. (Please note: If you refer to the general movement you spell Fair Trade in
         two words. If you talk about FLO Fairtrade the term is written in one word.) In 2002 FLO e.V. launched the new international
         Fairtrade Certification Mark. As the market expanded and the volumes Fairtrade Labelling was handling were growing, the
         market’s need for credible certification became inevitable. It was decided to separate the legislative (set standards) and the
         executive activities (certification) in order to remain a trustworthy certification system. As a consequence, in 2003 the certification
         department was outsourced in the newly founded FLO-CERT GmbH, a fully owned subsidiary of FLO e.V. Providing commitment to
         an independent, transparent and consistent high quality certification system and therefore assuring the credibility of the Fairtrade
         Mark FLO-CERT got ISO 65 accredited in October 2007 and is now the first accredited certifier for social standards and
         development.



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        1.1 What is Fairtrade Certification?
         FLO-CERT is an independent international certification company offering Fairtrade Certification services to clients in more than 70
         countries around the world. FLO-CERT audits and certifies the conditions of production, buying and selling of Fairtrade products.
         Our certification service provides an assurance to consumers of Fairtrade Certified products that they are contributing to the
         Social-Economic Development of people through their purchases. The certification process ensures that economic, social and
         environmental standards are met in the production of (agricultural) products and that producers receive a Fairtrade Minimum Price
         and Premium.
         The graphic below gives an overview of the supply chain and the actors involved in it. For further information please refer to
         Section 2.3 How is FLO-CERT incorporated in the Fairtrade setup? and 3.1 How is the certification process setup?




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        1.2 How are FLO-CERT’s keywords defined?
        1.2.1 What are Fairtrade Standards?
         Fairtrade Standards for producers and traders are the binding requirements within the Fairtrade system the operators must fulfil
         in order to enforce development in a business environment. The Fairtrade Standards help the operator to understand the generic
         principles of Fairtrade.
         The producer standards are social economic and environmental standards.
         The trade standards state how to buy, sell and manufacture Fairtrade Certified products. They define the Fairtrade price and
         premium, explain the conditions of pre-financing and rules to encourage long-term trade relationships.
         The Standards Unit of FLO e.V. develops the standards. They are ratified by the Standards Committee, which consists of
         stakeholders from FLO e.V. member organizations, producer organizations, traders and external experts.
         To have a closer look on the standards please go to: http://www.fairtrade.net/standards.html

        1.2.2 What are FLO-CERT Compliance Criteria?
         The compliance criteria comprise the interpretations of the standards and translate their generic principles into measurable
         criteria that fit into the operator’s reality. They serve as control points for the auditor to check compliance with the Fairtrade
         principles. Compliance criteria exist for all generic and product-specific Fairtrade Standards. There are major and minor
         compliance criteria and there are different timelines for their fulfilment. Some compliance criteria need to be fulfilled from the
         initial phase onwards, while others only need to be complied with after 3 or 6 years or within the first or second year of
         certification. Operators are informed of Compliance Criteria applicable to them before they are evaluated against them.
         When a new standard is set by FLO e.V’s Standards Committee, FLO-CERT will be contacted and the responsible Standard
         Interpretation Analyst coordinates the development of the associated compliance criteria. The interpretation of the standards and
         the definition of compliance criteria is mainly a consultation process within FLO-CERT’s Certification Department and the FLO e.V.
         Standards Committee.
         Compliance Criteria can be found on the website: http://www.flo-cert.net/flo-cert/main.php?id=60

        1.2.3 Who are Operators?
         Operator means any organization that is certified by us. Producers are the primary focus of Fairtrade Certification. Traders who buy
         and sell Fairtrade Certified products are only certified against the Fairtrade Standards for Trade.

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        1.3 What is the scope of our certification?
         Our certification services are available to all applicants whose activities fall within the scope of our certification system. There
         must be no undue financial or other (hidden) considerations when evaluating applications.
         FLO-CERT does not have a Certification Mark as part of its certification system. Once certified by FLO-CERT, operators may contact
         FLO International or a Labelling Initiative in order to obtain the right to use the International Fairtrade Certification Mark.
         For more information please see: http://www.fairtrade.net/labelling_initiatives1.html

        1.3.1 Product scope
         FLO-CERT certifies agricultural products such as Coffee, Tea, Banana, Dried Fruits, Cotton and Flowers.
         Please follow this link for complete information on the product scope: http://www.flo-cert.net/flo-cert/scopecheck3.php
         Currently the section “Additional requirements for traders in the cotton chain” of the Fairtrade Standards for Seed Cotton is not
         part of the Scope of our certification system.




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        1.3.2 Setups
         The following producer setups producing the above mentioned products can be certified by FLO-CERT:
               • Small Producer Organisations (SPOs) which are structurally organised small farmers who work for themselves, for example
                  as a co-operative.
                                                                                   Types of Small Producer Organizations
                                              3rd grade                            1st grade - is a legally formed Small Producer Organisation
                                                                                   which is able to contribute to the social and economic
                                                                                   development of its members and its communities and is
                                 2nd grade                     2nd grade           democratically controlled by its direct members. The
                                                                                   majority of members of the organisation are Small
                                                                                   Producers.
                                                                                   2nd grade - is a Small Producer Organisation formed by 1st
              1st grade           1st grade   1st grade              Mixed         grades (members) which are legally affiliated to the 2nd
                                                                   Structure       grade. The 2nd grade is democratically controlled by their
                                                                                   direct members. The 2nd grade organisation provides
                                                                                   central services for its members.
                                                                                   3rd grade - is a Small Producer Organisation (SPO) legally
                                                 Affiliated                        formed by their affiliated 2nd grades.
                                                    SPO                            Mixed Structure - is a 1st grade Small Producer
                                                                                   Organisation with individual small producers as legal
                                                              Small Producer       members and also affiliated Small Producer Organisations
                          Small Producer                                           as legal members.

                • Hired Labour are workers who work for somebody else, for example a commercial farm or a factory;
                • Contract Production Projects are unorganised farmers who sell their products to a service provider. On a long term they
                  should be empowered to turn in to a Small Producer Organisation.

         The scope of Trade Certification services is to certify products of all companies (such as processors, exporters, importers,
         manufacturers and distributors) located around the world, who take legal ownership and/or who handle or transform the Fairtrade
         product.


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        1.3.3 Geographical area
         The scope of Producer Certification services is restricted to products, produced by operators in countries that appear on the
         “Geographical Scope of Producer Certification for Fairtrade Labelling” document published by the standard setting organization
         FLO International. The map below shows the countries which are covered by the scope.
         More information can be found at the following link:
         http://www.fairtrade.net/fileadmin/user_upload/content/2009/standards/documents/Aug09_Geographical_scope.pdf




         Trader certification mostly takes place in the northern hemisphere. Starting in 2007, more and more south to south trading takes
         place.

         When a new standard is made or when there is a request to extend the scope of our certification system, FLO-CERT first
         investigates the implications of the extended scope before beginning to implement it. Only once we have integrated the new
         rules/realities into our certification system will we begin to implement. Clients and consumers are informed when the extended
         scope/new standard will be implemented.

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        2 Who are we?
         With over 2000 clients in more than 70 countries, FLO-CERT has become one of the world’s leading social certification bodies –
         empowering over one million farmers and wage workers and their families in the global south.

        2.1 What is our Vision and Mission?
        2.1.1 FLO-CERT Purpose
         We offer certification services to enable disadvantaged producers to access the Fairtrade market and to support their development.

        2.1.2 Vision
         A world in which all producers can enjoy secure and sustainable livelihoods, fulfil their potential and decide on their future.

        2.1.3 Mission
         To connect producers and consumers, promote fairer trading conditions and empower disadvantaged producers to combat poverty,
         strengthen their position and take more control over their live.

        2.2 What is our Quality Policy?
         The senior management of FLO-CERT has based its Quality Policy on the guiding principles of Capability, Consistency, Efficiency
         and Transparency as well as on the requirements of the ISO Guide 65.
         The Quality Policy of FLO-CERT provides a framework for establishing and reviewing the quality goals of the company.
         It is appropriate to the purpose of our organization and includes a commitment of the senior management to comply with the
         requirements and continually improve the effectiveness of the quality system. Moreover, the Quality Policy is reviewed and
         updated for continuing stability. It is announced and explained at all levels of the organization and is also available to the public.
         The Quality Policy of FLO-CERT is presented in a separate declaration at the end of the present Quality Manual.




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        2.3 How is FLO-CERT incorporated in the Fairtrade setup?
         FLO-CERT is part of the Fairtrade movement which consists of a complex structure.
         Currently FLO-CERT provides services for certification against standards set by FLO International, a publicly recognized non profit
         multi-stakeholder association involving 19 Labelling Initiatives, three Producer Networks and two Associate Members. FLO-CERT is a
         wholly owned subsidiary of FLO International.

        2.3.1 FLO Board
         FLO’s Board of Directors is elected and ratified by the General Assembly. It is composed of:
                • 5 representatives of the Labelling Initiatives (LI)
                • 4 representatives of Fairtrade certified Producer Organizations (at least one from Latin America, Africa and Asia)
                • 2 representatives from Fairtrade certified Traders
                • 2 external Board Members
         The Chair of the Board leads its activities. The Board’s mission is to guide FLO to becoming the worldwide reference for consumers’
         and producers’ choice in Fairtrade certification. It is primarily responsible for the strategic direction, sound financial management,
         risk management and employment of the Chief Executive of the association. The board also appoints the members of the following
         FLO e.V. committees: Standards, Finance and Nominations.

        2.3.2 Fairtrade Labelling Organisations (FLO e.V.)
         Fairtrade Labelling Organisations International is a not-for-profit, multi-stakeholder association which builds the umbrella
         organisation for the FLO Fairtrade movement. It involves 24 member organisations (Labelling Initiatives and Producer Networks) and
         is setup as follows.




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        2.3.3 Producer Networks
         Producer networks are organisations which Fairtrade Certified Producer Organisations may join and are recognised by FLO e.V. as
         the representative bodies of producers, workers and others belonging to Fairtrade Certified Producer Organisations.
         During FLO e.V's General Assembly held in Bonn, Germany, on 25th May 2007, the producer networks officially became full
         members of FLO and are since represented in the board, where they take part in the decision process.
         At the moment, there are three active producer networks (on three continents):
                • AFN (African Fairtrade Network)
                • CLAC (Coordinadora Latinoamericana y el Caribe de Comercio Justo)
                • NAP (Network of Asian Producers)

        2.3.4 Labelling Initiatives (LIs)
         LIs are national organisations which licence the Fairtrade certification mark onto consumer products that are Fairtrade Certified by
         FLO-CERT. They promote Fairtrade in their countries and monitor the development of the Fairtrade market by analysis and
         researches. Companies placed in a country where no Fairtrade LI exits can obtain a licence from FLO e.V. Currently, there are
         about 20 Labelling Initiatives, mainly throughout Europe and North America, known as Max Havelaar, TransFair, Fairtrade
         Foundation and other national names.




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        2.4 How is FLO-CERT GmbH setup?
         FLO-CERT GmbH is an international certification body offering independent Fairtrade Certification services to clients in more than
         70 countries. It is divided into four departments: Technical Services Department, Certification Department, Central Services
         Department and Finance.

        2.4.1 Legal Status and Headquarter
         FLO-CERT GmbH is a Limited Company, offering Fairtrade Certification services to operators within the scope of our certification
         system. In operating the certification system, FLO-CERT is completely independent and is not influenced in its decisions by any
         external organization.
         FLO-CERT GmbH is registered at the District Court in Bonn, Germany with registration number HRB 12937. Our headquarters are
         located in Bonn, Germany: Bonner Talweg 177 D-53129. The Chief Executive Officer of the company is Rüdiger Meyer.




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        2.4.2 Organizational Structure




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                                                      Technical Services Department

         The Technical Services (TS) Department provides services mainly to the Certification Department.


          TS Director

          Quality Management                 •Management of ISO 65 accreditation
                                             •Continuous improvement of the Quality Management system
                                             •Improvement and harmonisation of FLO-CERT’s processes
                                             •Implementation, harmonisation and improvement of FLO-CERT’s tools and templates
                                             •Training of staff on QM system


          Business Implementation            •Implementation of new and amended Standards and Price
                                             •Advisory function
                                             •Implementation of scope extensions

          Data Management                    •Transaction Reporting and Report Controlling
                                             •Data Quality & Bug Tracking
                                             •Information Service

          IT                                 •IT support
                                             •IT project first level support
                                             •IT systems management (Internal Pages, Roxy     E-Cert)




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                                                      Central Services Department

         The Central Services (CS) Department provides the legal and organisational framework in which FLO-CERT operates.


          CS Director

          Human Resources & Legal           •Management of vacancies
                                            •Administration and coordination of staff trainings
                                            •Employment Contract management
                                            •Handling of workplace related issues e.g. coordination of rooms

          Communications                    •Strategic engagement
                                            •Information and Research
                                            •Creative (Websites, flyers, brochures, posters etc.)

          Business Development              •Develop and implement a strategy for the expansion of FLO-CERT’s business through non-
                                             core activities / into new fields
                                            •Develop and manage special certification projects
                                            •Develop and strengthen relationships with key clients of FLO-CERT

          Administration                    •Office Management
                                            •Reception




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                                                          Certification Department

         The Certification Department at FLO-CERT is divided into regional units.

         The responsibilities of the Certification Department are the following amongst others:
                     Operator Scope Checks
                     Administration of Operator Applications
                     Evaluation of applications
                     Coordination and planning of audits including communication with auditors
                     Evaluation of audit reports
                     Communication and contact with the operators
                     Handling and follow up of non-conformities and corrective measures
                     Taking of certification decisions (approval/suspension/decertification)
                     Issuance of certificates




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                                                                    Regions:

                      Americas                          Europe/Africa                        Asia
                      South America                     North West Africa                    Asia I (Office in India)
                      Colombia (Office in Bogota)       South Africa (Office in Cape Town)   Asia II
                      Costa Rica (Office in San José)   East Africa (Office in Tanzania)
                                                        Europe/International




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        2.4.3 Roles and Responsibilities
         Besides the different hierarchy levels, certification functions have been defined to ensure that only suitably qualified personnel can
         perform the respective certification functions defined in relevant certification procedures. More details can be found in the latest
         version of the CERT RolesResponsibilitiesMatrix ED and TS RolesResponsibilitiesMatrix ED.

        2.4.4 Subcontracting
         Although we have both legal and financial in-house expertise, additional professional services are directly contracted by FLO-CERT
         whenever necessary.
         FLO-CERT currently does not subcontract any audits to other certification or audit bodies.

        2.5 How does FLO-CERT’s Governance Structure look like?
        2.5.1 The Senior Management Team
         The Management is represented by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) who is supported in his functions by the Directors of
         Certification, Technical Services, Central Services and Finances and the three Associate Directors.
         Together they form our Senior Management Team, meeting regularly to discuss challenges and find solutions to problems. The
         functions of the members of our Management Team are described in detailed job descriptions and procedures.

        2.5.2 The Supervisory Board
         The Supervisory Board is one of our Controlling Bodies and consists of different experts in various fields. During several annual
         meetings, the Supervisory Board reviews the performance of the company. The members of the Supervisory Board can be seen on
         our webpage (http://www.flo-cert.net/flo-cert/main.php?id=6). The scope and mandate of the Supervisory Board is described in
         the EXE SupervisoryBoard ED.

        2.5.3 The Finance Committee
         The Finance Committee assists and offers advice to the Advisory Board on all financial matters within FLO-CERT GmbH which are
         delegated by the Board to the Finance Committee. For a more detailed description see EXE FinanceCommitteeToR ED.



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        2.5.4 The Certification Committee
         The Certification Committee is also a controlling body, advising the Certification Department on decisions, certification policies and
         performs quality tests on certification decisions taken internally. The Certification Committee consists of all relevant stakeholders
         in Fairtrade Certification. A description of the scope and mandate of the committee can be found in the CERT ToRCC ED.

        2.5.5 The Appeals Committee
         All of our clients have a right to appeal against certification decisions. The Appeals Committee therefore also performs a controlling
         function by in-depth analysis of each case appealed against. In reaching its decision, the Appeals Committee must re-evaluate the
         offending certification decision, analyse the applicant’s submissions as well as all other information that might be relevant to the
         case at hand. Further details can be found in the QM Appeal&Review SOP.

        2.5.6 The Review Committee
         This Committee has a rotating membership of four Regional Managers and is dealing with the requests for review of evaluation
         decisions submitted by our operators. The committee makes decisions according to the procedure outlined in the QM
         Appeals&Review SOP and all of its proceedings are documented by the Quality Management Representative.




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        2.6 Who are FLO-CERT’s Actors?
        2.6.1 The Quality Management Representative
         The Quality Management Representative (QMR) designs, implements and monitors our Quality Management system in cooperation
         with the Senior Management Team. In order to perform these tasks the QMR has direct access to the Senior Management Team.
         He/she is responsible to report on the functioning of the Quality Management System. The functions of the QMR are further
         described in a detailed job description.

        2.6.2 The Team
         In accordance with HR RecruitmentCompetenceStaffAuditors SOP all of our team members, whether in the Certification,
         Technical Services, Central Services or Finance Departments are highly qualified, competent and capable of performing all duties
         assigned to them. All employees have detailed job specifications providing information on their functions and assigned
         responsibilities. The quality management documents (e.g SOPs, WIs, EDs,) provide further guidance on how we do our work. Besides
         the high qualification entry requirements, there are ongoing training programmes aimed at increasing the skills following analyses
         of training needs. For further details on staff training refer to HR TrainingEvaluationStaffAuditors SOP.

        2.6.3 The Auditors
         Our team of auditors are selected based on their skills and their abilities to deal with the complex nature of Fairtrade Certification.
         In order to ensure that these skills remain operational, intensive yearly training programmes are compulsory for all auditors to
         attend. Because we place emphasis on handling the confidential information of our clients with care, our auditors are trained on
         and are bound to our regulations on confidentiality through their contracts. These regulations are described in detail in the QM
         Confidentiality SOP. Because we want to ensure that the certification process is free of influence, our auditors have to disclose all
         possible conflicts of interests to us. When conflicts of interest are identified, other auditors are used to evaluate a specific client.




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        3 What we do and how we do it?
        3.1 How is the certification process setup?
                              Operators have access to experienced staff throughout the process, should clarifications of our certification be
             Application      necessary.
                              During the application phase information on the organizational structure and the Fairtrade plans of the operator
                              are collected. In case of traders a Permission to trade Letter will be issued in the end of the application phase
           Initial Physical   and the applicant has the right to realize Fairtrade transactions for up to 6 months. Latest then the initial
                Audit         physical audit needs to be performed in order to check compliance with the Compliance Criteria for traders.

                              The operator suggests measures to correct the non-conformities found during the audit. Selected staff members
             Evaluation       evaluate the corrective measures taken by the operator.
                              Once all non-conformities are fixed, the operator file is handed to a qualified Certifier who was not involved in
                              the audit or evaluation process.
                              A certificate can only be issued once all non-conformities with the Compliance Criteria detected during the
            Certification
                              audit are fixed.
                              The purpose of surveillance is to make sure that compliance with the relevant requirements of Certified
                              Fairtrade is maintained. There are two surveillance activities during a certification cycle. Surveillance activities
            Surveillance      can either take the form of a physical audit or of a document check, depending on risk factors.
                              If non conformities are detected during the surveillance, appropriate sanctions are issued. The type of sanction
                              for a non conformity detected during surveillance depends on the severity of the non conformity.
             Renewal
           Physical Audit     When major certification criteria are breached, the certificate might immediately be suspended. Non resolved
                              non conformities may lead to a decertification later on.

                              Operators are informed of such sanctions already during the application phase. Information on sanctions is
            Certification     contained in the certification contract.




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        3.2 What are the Certification Cycles?
        3.2.1 Three year certification cycle
         FLO-CERT has three year certification cycles. During a certification cycle, surveillance activities are performed in order to make
         sure that all relevant requirements of Fairtrade Certification are complied with. Before the end of a certification cycle and the
         start of a new cycle, a physical audit must take place.
         After the Initial Certification, the operator starts the first 3-year Certification Cycle. In case of Small Licensees the Certification
         Cycle constitutes of 6 years.
         On the producer level 2 physical surveillance audits are carried out to evaluate continued compliance with the Compliance Criteria
         valid at time 0. On the trader level, the frequency of physical surveillance depends on the classification of the trader. Surveillance
         on the trader level can be onsite (physical) or offsite (desktop review, Flow of Good Reports). The audit category matrix is
         explained in the CERT Audit SOP.
         On the producer level a surveillance audit is also carried out to assess preparedness against criteria that will become valid in year 3
         or 6. See picture below:
                                   1                                        2



            Year 0        Year 1       Year 2    Year 3         Year 4          Year 5   Year 6


                               CERTIFICATE 1                             CERTIFICATE 2

            1        1st Certification Cycle: All level 1 compliance criteria                      Initial/Renewal Audit

            2        2nd Certification Cycle: All level 1+ level 2 compliance                      Surveillance Audit
                          criteria
            3*       3rd Certification Cycle: All level 1+ level 2 + level 3
                                                                                                  *Not displayed in above chart
                          compliance criteria




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        3.2.2 Six year certification cycle for small Licensees




                                                      1                                                         2



         Year 0   Year 1   Year 2   Year 3   Year 4   Year 5   Year 6   Year 1   Year 2    Year 3   Year 4   Year 5   Year 6



                    Permission to Trade 1     Permission to Trade 2                          Certificate 1                     C
                                                                                                                               E
                                                                                                                               R
                   Initial/Renewal Audit                                                                                       T
                                                                                                                               I
                   Surveillance (offsite desktop review)                                                                       F
                                                                                                                               I
                                                                                                                               C
            1     1st Certification Cycle: Relevant requirements          All year 0 compliance                                A
                                                                                                                               T
            2     2nd Certification Cycle: Relevant requirements          All year 0, 3 and 6                                  E

                                                                                                                               2

         For more information please refer to the CERT Certification SOP.


        3.2.3 Requirements for producers
         Fairtrade is also about development and the standards reflect this. Because development cannot happen overnight, not all
         standards are immediately applicable to producers.
         For producers, there are compliance criteria that become applicable over time. Not all criteria must be fulfilled during one
         certification cycle.



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        3.3 What is the Quality Management System?
         Our Quality Management System is guided by our vision, mission and guiding principles. We believe that the best way to make sure
         our guiding principles of Capability, Consistency, Efficiency and Transparency are reflected in our work is by documenting our
         responsibilities in our QM system.
         The ongoing improvement of our quality system also draws from external feedback about our certification system.
         In this way, our QM system is a comprehensive planning, management and steering tool for the continuous improvement of our
         processes and services.
         The requirements of ISO 65 (EN 45011) are directly integrated into our processes. The certification process is described in our FLO-
         CERT workflow engine. This means that procedures must be followed systematically.

        3.3.1 Document and Record Control
         In making sure that all team members know what is expected of them and in order to ensure that everyone always has access to the
         latest, properly approved version of a document, we set up a procedure that defines the processes, requirements and
         responsibilities for document control of FLO-CERT’s quality system. More details on document control can be found in the
         QM DocumentControl SOP.
         Records relate to information we have gathered and generated during the course of the certification process relating to a specific
         operator. FLO-CERT safeguards all Operator Records. In order to ensure that we can always easily find any relevant operator
         specific information, the ways in which we deal with records is also described and controlled in the QM RecordCode ED and the QM
         Filing&Archiving SOP.




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        3.3.2 Document Structure and Purpose of QM documents
         If the office is on fire and only one box can be saved, then it should be the one with all QM documents, since they aim at
         standardising the work within FLO-CERT and describe how FLO-CERT works in detail. Furthermore they are supposed to provide any
         template needed in the daily work life.
         Documentation hierarchy at FLO-CERT can be seen in the following diagram:

                                                                                      I. Quality Policy
                                             Qual                                     Contains the main principles in managing the quality
                                            Quality
                                                  i                                   system of FLO-CERT
                                            Policy
                                                                                      II. Quality Manual
                                                                                      Outlines the general description of FLO-CERT structure,
                                                                                      our quality system, certification scope and process,
                                        Quality Manual                                mission and vision as required by ISO 65.
                                                                                      III. Standard Operating Procedures
                                                                                      Describe main processes and rules of our certification
                                Standard Operating Procedures                         and management system. Normally, they explain a
                                           (SOPs)                                     complex process that can consist of more than one work
                                                                                      flow and contain rules related to the described process.
                                                                                      IV. Work Instructions and Explanatory
                                                                                      Documents
                              Work Instructions (WIs), Explanatory
                                                                                      Provide more detailed information on how to perform
                                        Documents (EDs)                               tasks outlined in SOPs; used to describe general rules to
                                                                                      be applied to a process; other written guidelines.
                                                                                      V. Forms
                                                                                      QM documents specially designed for the needs of FLO-
                                                                                      CERT which serves to collect information on various
                                          Forms (FOs)                                 processes.




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        3.3.3 QMS Non-conformities
         QMS non-conformities are defined as non-compliances against ISO Guide 65 and FLO-CERT implemented rules and procedures
         detected in our Internal and External Audits (Section 3.3.4), during Quality Checks (Section 3.3.5), as well as identified during
         handling of Appeals, Reviews, Complaints and Allegations (Section 3.3.6). The QMR is responsible to follow up on the
         implementation of the necessary corrective measures as defined in the respective procedures. He/she is also in charge to check the
         effectiveness of their implementation during internal audits. Further the Quality Improvement System (QIS) as implemented at FLO-
         CERT provides a useful and proven tool to monitor effectiveness of implemented rules and procedures taking advantage of the
         contribution of all staff members (see description in QM IntroManual ED - Section 2).

        3.3.4 Internal Audits
         Internal Audits are performed systematically on all areas of FLO-CERT operation at least once per year. The aim of the internal
         audits is to determine whether the quality system conforms to the planned arrangements, to the requirement of ISO 65 and to the
         quality system requirements established by FLO-CERT and whether the system is effectively implemented and maintained. This is a
         very constructive process and always leads to a development of our processes. If deviations from procedures are detected, they are
         addressed and actions that need to be taken are followed up, leading to improvements. The results of Internal Audits are
         communicated to the senior management.
         For more information please see the QM InternalAudit SOP which is based on the provisions of ISO 19011:2002.

        3.3.5 Quality Checks
         Furthermore, quality checks on the correct following of the certification process are performed by the QM Officers at least once
         per three months. The quality control checks performed at FLO-CERT are described in QM QualityChecks WI.

        3.3.6 Appeals, Reviews, Complaints and Allegations
         FLO-CERT welcomes feedback about operators’ experiences with Fairtrade certification or the opinions of other parties about the
         handling of certification or any other related matters. All appeals, review requests, allegations and/or complaints submitted at
         FLO-CERT are investigated by our Quality Management Unit.
            • A complaint describes the situation of an operator expressing its dissatisfaction with the services of FLO-CERT.
            • In case of an allegation an operator, customer or any other party reports on another FT certified operator who does not
               comply with the Fairtrade Standards.


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             •  An appeal occurs when an operator does not agree with a certification decision FLO-CERT took and wants to fight it. When
                the operator hands in an appeal, the case will be handed over to the Appeals committee coordinated by the QM department.
             • A review request can be handed in when an operator questions an evaluation decision related to detected non-conformities,
                suggested corrective measures and/or objective evidence. In this case the Review Committee will be convened.
         In order to ensure objectivity, we guarantee that all relevant information is gathered and analyzed by staff members that were not
         involved in the case. The resolution of all appeals, review requests, allegations and complaints are subject to the following
         standard operating procedures: QM Appeal&Review SOP; QM Allegation SOP and QM Complaints SOP
         The mentioned above SOPs can be found on FLO-CERT website http://www.flo-cert.net/flo-cert/main.php?id=17

        3.3.7 Management Reviews
         The purpose of a Management Review is to ensure the continuing stability, adequacy and effectiveness of the organization’s quality
         system. This means that minimum twice per year our goals are evaluated against our performance, results of Internal Audits are
         considered, complaints against our services are investigated and the general state of company affairs are evaluated. Findings of
         such Management Reviews are reported to the senior management in accordance with QM ManagementReview SOP.

        3.3.8 Confidentiality
         We treat all Operator specific information as confidential and only release this information when forced to do so by a Court of Law
         or only after obtaining the consent of the operator concerned. When signing the certification contract, operators are asked for
         their “consent to release”. Because operators understand that transparency is crucial to the Fairtrade system, most operators
         agree to the release of some information. The “consent to release” allows FLO-CERT to publish the operator information on the
         internal pages, which are used by producers and traders to identify suitable business partners. If an operator signs the consent to
         release declaration its data can be handed over to the LIs and FLO e.V.
         FLO-CERT actively controls that confidentiality regulations are adhered to and acts when confidentiality is breached.
         Further details on these regulations can be found in the QM Confidentiality SOP.

        3.3.9 Certificate Control
         Unfortunately it sometimes happens that members of the public make false claims relating to their status as Fairtrade Certified. In
         order to protect the product of our certification system (the certificate) and the value it has for 0perators, we control the misuse
         of FLO-CERT Certificates.



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        3.3.10 Publications
         In order to provide a more accessible service to our clients and to inform the public as much as possible, FLO-CERT publishes the
         following documents on its website:
             • All information contained in this Quality Manual,
             • Lists of all Certified Operators,
             • All relevant information relating to our Certification System including information about the certification process, fees and
                many more.




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                                                           Quality Policy
         The Quality Policy of FLO-CERT GmbH provides a framework for establishing and reviewing our quality goals. It is based on the
         guiding principles of Capability, Consistency, Efficiency and Transparency incorporated in the following key areas:

         CLIENTS:
                • Ensure that our customers can rely on certification decisions that are free of influence, transparent, consistent,
                   comparable and correct;
                • Keep our client’s interests close to our management decisions, especially to the ones related to fee systems;
                • Place significant emphasis on the way in which we communicate, fostering a transparent dialogue with our clients all
                   over the world.
         HUMAN RESOURCES:
                • All our colleagues are suitably qualified and trained on rules and procedures relevant to their work throughout the
                   year;
                • Employ qualified employees to perform all necessary functions while planning for growth in advance;
                • Rely on auditors who are carefully chosen according to best practice criteria.
         WORKING ENVIRONMENT & COMMUNITY:
                • Provide and maintain suitable working environment for our staff, indirectly influencing the positive development of
                   our society.
         PARTNERS:
                • Engage actively with the Fairtrade Labelling Community, assisting in the growth of markets for Certified Fairtrade
                   products.
         FLO-CERT Senior Management Team is committed to:
                 • Communicate the Quality Policy within the company and ensure that it has been understood;
                 • Evaluate all our processes periodically and learn from detected inconsistencies in order to guarantee the continuous
                     improvement of the effectiveness of our quality system;
                 • Periodically revise and update the quality policy for its continuous suitability and relevance with our quality goals.

         01.02.2010                                   Technical Services Director: .................................. /Frank Brinkschneider

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