Three new position statements were published in document F926 in December 2023 which provide further clarity around unannounced audits.

Position Statement 1
Clause 1.1.10 - Update of site responsibility to ensure unannounced audits can be undertaken to protocol.
This clause has been expanded to put more responsibility on the site to ensure that their unannounced audits are taking place within the correct window. This includes agreeing contractual terms with the certification body in advance of the start of the 4-month window, and keeping the certification body up to date on changes that may affect this planning, such as maintenance shutdowns.

Position Statement 2
Sites may not change certification body within the 4-month audit window.
There are a number of arrangements made by both a site and the certification body to ensure a BRCGS audit is undertaken to the correct protocol. This position statement stipulates that a site may choose to change to a different certification body from its current certifying body however, changes will not be permitted in the last four months of the audit window, whether an unannounced audit is scheduled or not, unless agreed in writing with BRCGS through the certification body concession process.

Position Statement 3
Clarification of the definition of ‘Initial audit’.
The definition of the term ‘initial audit’ has been updated for clarification. It should be noted that this change impacts the requirement for an unannounced audit to be undertaken at least once in every three years. This three-year cycle will continue irrespective of a lapse in certification as specified for 24 months.


Read the full position statements here

During the lifetime of a published standard, the BRCGS Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) may be asked to review the wording of a clause or provide an interpretation of a requirement or a detail of the protocol. The decision made by the TAC is known as a position statement.

Position statements are binding and are considered to be an extension of the Standard. Companies need to be aware of any statements relating to a Standard and, where necessary, ensure that the information is transferred into action.

All position statements are available on the website here, Participate and communicated via our monthly newsletter, subscribe here.