BELGIUM - Feed Schemes Observatory Feed Benchmark Project; Comments invited

The Feed Schemes Observatory will establish a benchmark system for the recognition of schemes operating within the Feed Chain; first deliverables now available: comments invited
December 18, 2013

On June 21, 2013, the Feed Observatory was launched as a joint initiative, between the Industry, the Feed Assurance Schemes and the Conformity Assessment Bodies. One of the first projects (the Feed Benchmark Project) launched by this initiative is to create a benchmark tool.

Nowadays, International Trade is taking place in quite a complex legal and business environment. Third party certification (TPC) is becoming the passport for market access, at a global level. Operating on such a large and global scale, a Conformity Assessment Scheme is required, both to meet and respect the rules of international Accreditation Standards and to respect the rules of International Trade.

Besides its market value, a credible Third Party Certification is also a useful tool in the hands of the competent authorities, e.g. to plan official controls or to “grant” market access, either to products or to operators. Third Party Certification is not meant to substitute the competent authorities’ responsibilities; it is however increasingly recognized by a number of them, as an important element, which not only supports their enforcement role, but can also help setting state-of-the-art practices at global level and, as such, facilitate understanding and exchanges at international level.

The first phase of the Benchmark Project is almost coming to a close. After intensive meetings, the project partners are now in a position to submit the first deliverables to consultation, as indicated in the table below:

Assessment document

• Scheme content for the Production (of feed, pet food & feed biochemicals) and Distribution (trade, transportation & storage) scopes;

• Definitions for the feed chain categories;

Conformity assessment

• Standardization requirements

• Certification Process Description

The consultation process will remain open until February 18, 2014. In order to obtain the relevant document and to submit your comments, you are invited to visit the project’s consultation webpage.

The Feed Schemes Observatory will establish a benchmark system for the recognition of schemes operating within the Feed Chain. This recognition will allow them to demonstrate conformity with the international recognised requirements; it will also allow exchangeability among the participants schemes, based on the internationally recognised principles.

The Feed Schemes Observatory is committed to following a transparent and open commenting procedure.

For questions regarding the project consultation, please contact the secretariat by e-mail.