On 27 February 2021,  taz.de published the article “Das kaputte Zertifikat” (The Broken Certificate). The article listed a range of claims concerning GLOBALG.A.P. which are erroneous from our perspective. This applies to the following statements in particular:

  • “[…] GLOBALG.A.P. is a private company tracing its origins to an initiative developed by European supermarket chains in 1997.”
  • “The supermarkets basically supervise themselves.”
  • “Living wages and fair procurement policies are not required, local actors not sufficiently involved [...]”
  • “If allegations against a producer are reported in a newspaper report about a trade union press release, this information never reaches the certifier.”
  • “A question such as: ‘Have there been any criminal proceedings in recent years or months?’ may also not form part of the GLOBALG.A.P. checks.”
  • “‘The CB [certification body] can report serious cases of fraud, violations of legal requirements, and crimes to the responsible local/national authorities.’ Yet it is not required to do so.”
  • “There is indeed no question about ongoing criminal proceedings against the producer. Direct questions concerning workers’ accommodation and the corresponding sanitary facilities are also nowhere to be found.”

The GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat hereby releases the following statement in response to the above:

GLOBALG.A.P. is the most widely accepted private enterprise food safety certification in the world, setting voluntary standards for the certification of agricultural products all over the globe. The GLOBALG.A.P. Integrated Farm Assurance (IFA) standard sets out strict criteria for good agricultural practices for producers. These criteria are constantly being improved upon by means of an open consultation system. The GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat is currently working on the fifth revision of the IFA standard, which is due to be published later this year.

FoodPLUS GmbH, the legal entity behind the standard, is managed by an elected steering committee composed in equal proportion of representatives of retail/food service organizations and manufacturer/supplier organizations. The retail and food service organizations therefore make up 50% of the steering committee. The same is true for all technical committees, thus ensuring equal representation of all interested parties.

All audits are performed by certification bodies, which are independent legal entities. Certification decisions are made exclusively by said certification bodies on the basis of predefined criteria (GLOBALG.A.P. control points and compliance criteria). The corresponding documents are all available in our  Document Center.

GRASP is a voluntary supplementary module and stands for GLOBALG.A.P. Risk Assessment on Social Practice. It was developed to assess social practices on a farm and deals with specific aspects of workers’ health, safety, and welfare. Control point and compliance criterion 7 assesses whether the applicable minimum wage is being paid.

The GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat has implemented a monitoring process which continuously scans the Internet. If an incident is reported to our team of experts, it subsequently launches an investigation. The aim of this is to ensure compliance with the general rules, control points, and compliance criteria of the GLOBALG.A.P. IFA standard.

The GLOBALG.A.P. Certification Integrity Program (CIPRO) functions as a feedback mechanism for the monitoring and assessment of certification bodies.

In addition, the GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat allows complaints to be reported to the Complaints Management Officer, who can be contacted at complaints@globagap.org.

The GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat emphasizes that criminal investigations fall exclusively under the purview of law enforcement authorities and cannot be undertaken by a certification system. Parties are presumed to be innocent as long as there has been no final conviction.