All program participants must complete an internal audit of their entire operation annually. The timing of the internal audit is important, however, so that the operation can ensure that they have completed the Food Safety Manual, as well as allowed enough time to make any necessary changes.
The internal audit is to be performed as a pre-audit, shortly before the actual on-site audit of the current season’s activities (i.e., before the on-site audit performed by the certification body). As per Section 24 of the CanadaGAP Food Safety Manual, the internal audit can be completed using the CanadaGAP Self-assessment Checklist, the Audit Checklist, or by using an outside party. The questions on the checklist are to be answered while the main activities relevant to the operation’s food safety program are occurring (e.g., harvesting, packing, storing, shipping, etc.). This allows for the operation to assess whether they have all the applicable required elements in place and are ready for their on-site audit.
For Options A1 and A2: If an operation is enrolled in Options A1 or A2 and is not scheduled for an on-site audit, they must complete the CanadaGAP Self-assessment Checklist and return a copy to their certification body. This effectively serves as the operation’s internal audit. For more information, please visit: https://www.canadagap.ca/audit-checklist/self-assessment/