Those enrolled in Option A1 or A2 of the CanadaGAP® Program are required to complete the annual self-declaration and self-assessment checklist for each year that they are not scheduled for an on-site audit.
Each program participant will be mailed a hard copy of the forms from CanadaGAP. The forms can also be downloaded directly:
- Self-Declaration and Self-Assessment Checklist v.7.2 (comes into effect April 1st, 2019)
- Instructions for completing self-assessments
- What you Need to Know about CanadaGAP Option A1 and A2 (brochure)
The idea behind the self-assessment is straightforward. It is to be completed in lieu of an audit, in Years 2, 3 and 4 of the four-year audit cycle. The questions on the checklist are to be answered while the main activities relevant to the program participant’s food safety program are occurring (e.g., harvesting, packing, storing, shipping, etc.). This would correspond roughly to the timing of your previous audit(s).
The forms must be completed and returned to the Certification Body at least 30 days (one month) before the current certificate expires. The forms can be submitted in hard copy, by fax, or electronically. Further instructions on completing the forms, and contact information for CanadaGAP certification bodies are available above.
Failure to return the completed self-declaration and self-assessment will result in loss of certification. Loss of certification means starting the audit cycle over again in Year 1 with a new on-site audit.
It is the program participant’s responsibility to return the completed forms at least 30 days (one month) before expiry of a current certificate, in order to maintain CanadaGAP certification. No reminder notices will be issued nor will follow-up occur from the CanadaGAP Program or the certification body (audit company).
The Certification Body will review the forms and contact the program participant if there are questions about continuing compliance with CanadaGAP requirements. It is possible for the Certification Body to require an on-site audit if the reviewer is not satisfied with the answers provided. They may also ask for corrective actions to be taken. The fees for “triggered audits” or corrective actions requested as a result of reviewing the self-assessment are at the program participant’s expense.
The cost of the review of the self-assessment itself and the issuance of new certificates is covered by the participant’s annual program fees to CanadaGAP.
Other Uses of the Self-Assessment Checklist
The self-assessment checklist may be used for other internal purposes by companies participating in the CanadaGAP Program. For instance, the checklist can be used by a company to complete its internal audit. It is also used by groups participating in Group Certification Option A3. When the self-assessment checklist is used for those purposes, the information and instructions above regarding deadlines and submitting the forms to the Certification Body do not apply.
Questions? firstname.lastname@example.org or 613-829-4711.