BRCGS Global Standard Gluten-Free Issue 4 now published

BRCGS is delighted to announce that the new Issue 4 of the BRCGS Global Standard Gluten-Free was published on 05 February 2024, and is available for download from the BRCGS Store or Participate. The result of a detailed and inclusive revision process, Issue 4 presents a strengthened and robust standard that will deliver greater assurance and value to all stakeholders.

First published in 2011, the Standard promotes the use of HACCP principles and a management systems approach, to systematically manage and control gluten in food manufacturing and packing environments. Properly implemented, the Standard provides a very strong level of protection from failure, and if failure does occur, it will enable the rapid identification and management of risks and deviations. There has been a year-on-year increase in the recognition of the Standard, which has seen significant growth in the UK and Europe. The Standard is globally applicable and now has certified sites in 34 countries across the world.

The rigour of BRCGS Gluten-free certification has won the endorsement of a broad network of national and regional associations in the USA, Canada, and Mexico. This allows certificated sites to use the on-pack association trademarks with the highest consumer recognition in their market, such as the ‘Beyond Celiac’ trademark in the USA, the Celiac Canada (CCA) trademark in Canada, and the Acelmex gluten-free trademark in Mexico and Latin America.

New for Issue 4

BRCGS has forged a strategic partnership with the Association of European Coeliac Societies (AOECS). Together, they have benchmarked against the AOECS Standard and innovatively developed an additional Section 8 to the BRCGS Gluten-Free Standard. This collaborative effort empowers certified sites and brands that source from them to display the AOECS’s Crossed Grain symbol on their packaging. This symbol is the most recognized gluten-free emblem across Europe and its neighbouring economies, signifying adherence to stringent gluten-free standards.

Other key changes in Issue 4 include the addition of non-conformity grading, a new section on labelling and pack control, and an extension of scope to include outsourced processing. Changes can also be expected which are designed to simplify the process and provide clarity.

Timeline

As with all revisions of the Global Standards, there must be a transition period between consultation, publication of the complete, finalised Standard and full implementation of the Standard. Therefore:

  • Issue 4 will be published in February 2024.
  • Certification audits against Issue 4 will commence from August 2024.

 

Support and guidance

To help sites with the transition to Issue 4, supporting publications and guidance are being prepared, and Issue 4 training courses are anticipated to be available in Spring 2024. Communications will follow in due course with further details.