Food Standards Auditing
– QQI Level 6

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– QQI Level 6

BRC, HACCP, ISO 22000, FSSC, Hygiene Packages

With greater consumer awareness of food hygiene and safety issues the need is greater than ever for food processors to develop and maintain effective food safety management systems. To effectively manage the HACCP systems, they need to be reviewed an... Read More

With greater consumer awareness of food hygiene and safety issues the need is greater than ever for food processors to develop and maintain effective food safety management systems. To effectively manage the HACCP systems, they need to be reviewed and audited (verified) on a planned frequency by trained auditors. Many internal audits are conducted in a haphazard manner providing very little useful information.  As BRC identified supplier approval as one of the three areas of major expansion, second party auditing of one’s supplier, particularly high risk suppliers, is increasing in importance. Understanding the audit process is essential to efficiently audit, particularly when the audit duration may be limited.

Food and drinks companies are now subject to many regulatory and customer food safety audits. European Regulation 178/2002 requires HACCP as a legal requirement in all food business operations. Third Party Certification against the BRC protocol or ISO 22000/ISO 22002 is now almost mandatory for food businesses who wish to trade with European retailers and further processors of branded product. Effective auditing is the key to maintaining compliance with these standards.

A HACCP System is defined by the U.S. Food & Drugs Administration, (FDA), as ‘The firm’s HACCP related activities including HACCP training, Prerequisite Program and HACCP Plan.’ This model of a HACCP system has effectively been updated by ISO 22000 with the introduction of the concept of operational prerequisites.

This HACCP System model is effective in controlling food safety hazards as long as it is managed effectively via focused auditing. The prerequisite element of the HACCP system i.e. cleaning, personal hygiene, plant equipment and services etc. may often be overlooked with companies focusing most of their audit resources on the CCPs. This auditing course will focus on auditing of prerequisites, operational prerequisites and the CCPs to ensure the overall food safety management system is effectively managed.


What's covered?

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  • Day One
  • Course Introduction and objectives
  • Food Safety Legislation – 178/2002, 852/2004
  • Food Safety Standards, ISO 22000, ISO 22002 (FSSC)
    • Pre-Requisite Program
    • HACCP Plan Development
  • 12 steps addressing the 7 CODEX principles
  • BRC Technical Standard
  • Type of Audit
  • Audit Cycle / Internal Audit Schedule
  • The Audit Process
  • Audit Planning & Preparation
  • The Audit Team, Auditor Behaviour, Auditor Qualification


Day Two

  • Audit Checklist / Audit Toolkit
  • Auditor Interviews
  • Conducting Meetings
  • Audit Execution
  • Analysis of Audit Findings:
    • Non-conformance
    • Corrective Action
  • Audit Report
  • Case Study
  • Task 1) Prepare for and conduct Opening Meeting
  • Task 2) Systems Audit
  • Task 3) Compliance Audit
  • Task 4) Prepare for and conduct Closing Meeting
  • QQI Level 6 examination
  • Course Review

Please bring copies of the relevant food safety standards that you use in your business e.g., BRC standards, ISO 22002, IFS, IS340, IS341. This programme will broadly discuss Food Safety related standards but the expectation is that each delegate is familiar with their own chosen standard(s).

Who should participate?

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  • Staff involved in developing, implementing, verifying and managing food safety management systems
  • Staff who have responsibility for conducting internal audits
  • Personnel with responsibility for vendor/external audits
  • Departmental Managers and Supervisory Staff, Purchasing, Production, Technical
  • General management who wish to acquire a broad knowledge of the relevant food safety standards

What will I learn?

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Participants achieve the following learning outcomes from the programme;

  • Understand the requirements of a Food Safety Management System – HACCP System
  • Become familiar with relevant food safety standards, BRC Technical Standard, International Food Safety Management System ISO 22000/ ISO 22002 (FSSC) and other relevant Irish food safety standards IS 340, IS 341
  • Understand the importance of effective auditing (first, second or third party) of a food safety management system focusing on areas of greatest risk
  • Design an Internal Audit Program and audit effectively against this program
  • Carry out audits as an individual or part of a team by understanding the Audit Life Cycle
  • Prepare an organization for third party assessment
  • Use data collected during audit to improve the management of food safety
  • Undertake a second party audit

Who are the tutors?

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What are the entry requirements?

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  • At least five-years’ experience of working with HACCP or other Food Safety Management Systems at Supervisory / Manager level.
  • Attendance at the SQT Training Ltd HACCP Development, Implementation & Verification - Level 5 (two-day course)
  • HACCP or other Food Safety Management System (two-day) qualification - equivalent to NFQ, Level 5. Proof of Certificate and details of course (including learning outcomes and content) to be supplied with application.
  • Degree/Masters (NFQ level 7-9) in the fields of Food Science/Microbiology/Food Safety, plus one-years' experience of working with HACCP or other Food Safety Management System at (Quality) Manager level. Proof of Certificate and details of experience (including projects, etc) to be supplied with application.

For applicants whose first language is not English, SQT recommends a minimum English language competency of IELTS 5.5 (or equivalent) for successful completion of this programme. It is important to note that learners are not expected to have an IELTS or equivalent examination complete. Potential delegates are expected to self-assess their English language competency against the IELTS Band scores which can be found in this document.

How will I be assessed?

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Those delegates wishing to pursue QQI certification will be required to:

  • Project – Essay Style Questions (worth 20% of overall assessment)
  • Undertake a Project. The project brief will be given to the delegates at the end of the course and must be submitted to SQT within five weeks following course completion (worth 80% of overall assessment).

The grading of the QQI award is as follows:
Pass 50-64%
Merit 65-79%
Distinction 80-100%

How do we train and support you?

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In-House Courses
For In-House courses, the Tutor will contact the Course Organiser in advance to discuss the programme in more detail in order to tailor it specifically to the organisation.

Course Manual
'Food Safety Principles and Practice – A CIEH foundation level guide to food safety' course book is provided.

Programme accreditation

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This course is QQI accredited at Level 6 on the National Framework of Qualifications. The course meets the requirements of QQI Special Purpose Specification 6S2178, a QQI Special Purpose Award in Food Standards Auditing. Delegates who successfully complete the course and pass all components of the assessment will receive QQI certification.

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QQI (FET) Level 6 Special Purpose Award (6S2178/6N2161)
Level 6 is the equivalent of “UK Advanced HACCP”



Course Code
2 training days
Course Times
9.15am to 4:15pm
Time Zone: Europe - Dublin
Public Virtual Training: €550

+ €170 for QQI Assessment & Certification Fee
(includes course documentation).

90% of SQT learners assessed in July 2021 received a Distinction - 100% Pass rate
Delivery Mode
This programme is delivered virtually or face-to-face, and is available as Public or In-Company training
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What Our Learner's SayWhat Our Learner's Say

Internal auditing is usually not something that is viewed in an enthusiastic light, especially by those outside of Quality Technical Departments! However, our team came away with a new perspective, both of the need for a robust process and the benefit of engaging with it. They enjoyed the interactive nature of the training, the true to production life examples and the team work aspects of the course. Well done!

Martina Delaney, Technical Manager, Karro Food Group

Food Standards Auditing
– QQI Level 6

Duration: 2 daysPublic Price: €605
+ €170 (certification fees)

Food Standards Auditing
– QQI Level 6

Duration: 2 daysVirtual Training Price: €550
+ €170 (certification fees)