Corrective actions are a normal part of the third party audit process, and it can be expected that most growers will have at least one corrective action assigned to them. The question we have been hearing from growers repeatedly this season is, “Do I have to do anything about corrective actions if I pass the audit?” The answer is YES!
If the corrective actions are not corrected or addressed prior to the next years audit there is the potential for the audit to not be completed. Inspectors will arrive at the farm prepared to look at the previous years corrective actions and if they are not satisfactorily addressed the audit will be stopped. Corrective actions do not need to be fixed right away but need to be addressed before the next audit.
One of the most common corrective actions that we are hearing about relates to not having all commodities grown at the farm audited. This presents and issue since some buyers only require one commodity audited or just the commodities sold to that buyer audited. The best way to handle this type of corrective action is to include in your food safety plan and in your documented corrective actions log that you are actively working towards adding additional commodities to the audit process. The auditors will want to see evidance of added commodities to the audit each year.