Frequently Asked Questions

About localg.a.p.

1. What is localg.a.p.?

localg.a.p. is one of the brands forming part of the GLOBALG.A.P. family of products. It includes several standardsthat are not part of certification, but based only on assessments. The key concept of localg.a.p. is capacity building. It was developed for local implementation and, where required, to prepare producers for certification, especially those that cannot immediately get certified.

2. What is Primary Farm Assurance (PFA)?

Primary Farm Assurance or PFA is the standard offered under the localg.a.p. brand. It is based on assessment only, rather than certification. The PFA General Rules, as set by the GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat, supply the basis for the implementation of the PFA standard. The PFA control points and compliance criteria (CPCC) consists of different levels, that introduce more requirements at each level closer to certification. PFA helps producers, and especially smallholder producers or producers new to standards, to adopt good agricultural practices which improve the efficiency of farm management, cut exposure to food safety risks, comply with legislation on food safety, and access local and regional markets. PFA is also a key building block for producers who need GLOBALG.A.P. Integrated Farm Assurance (IFA) certification to access demanding markets.

3. How is localg.a.p. PFA different from GLOBALG.A.P. IFA?

Primary Farm Assurance (PFA)

Integrated Farm Assurance (IFA)

Assessment

Certification

Producer receives localg.a.p. Number (LGN)

Producer receives GLOBALG.A.P. Number (GGN)

Subset of GLOBALG.A.P. IFA requirements in different levels

One level with a full set of requirements

Assessment can be conducted by PFA approved certification bodies (CBs) or verification bodies (VBs)

Inspections/Audits can be conducted only by GLOBALG.A.P. approved CBs

Compliant producer receives a letter of conformance

Compliant producer receives a certificate

Focus on local markets and capacity building

Internationally recognized

4. Can a client customize the PFA standard to its own needs?

The PFA standard is ready for use and has been set up by the GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat. No customization of the PFA standard is possible, unless it is handled as a separate project, that is, as a “private customized solution” that is separate from localg.a.p. If you are interested in setting up such a private customized solution, kindly contact antequera@globalgap.org for more information.

5. What happens to existing localg.a.p. programs that have been customized under previous localg.a.p. versions?

localg.a.p. programs that were customized before the launch of v5 of the PFA standard remain valid for as long as they are active. No new localg.a.p. fully-customized programs will be set up because customization of v5 of the PFA standard under the localg.a.p. brand is not possible.

6. Can a producer apply for a PFA assessment if they have previously been certified against GLOBALG.A.P. (either the IFA or the Produce Safety Assurance standard)?

No, certified or previously certified producers cannot be assessed under PFA or any other localg.a.p. standard or module.

7. Can a producer stay on one of the PFA standard levels indefinitely?

Yes, this is possible, if the market that the producer supplies allows/accepts this. Proceeding towards certification is only required if demanded by the specific market the producer supplies.

8. Can a producer change back to a lower level of the PFA standard, e.g., from Intermediate level to Foundation Level?

No, this is not possible because the aim is to improve systems on the farm through a capacity-building process. This involves proceeding from a lower level towards the defined level or end goal as required by the market.

9. Which products are covered as part of the PFA assessment?

Currently the PFA standard only includes products for the Crops scope as listed in the GLOBALG.A.P. product list.  Please contact the GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat if there is interest in setting up a new scope or sub-scope for PFA: localgap@globalgap.org

 
10. Why did we launch localg.a.p. PFA as version v5?

The PFA v5 is now based on the latest edition of GLOBALG.A.P. IFA v5. This has been done to reduce confusion by getting the versions of PFA and IFA more in line with each other.

11. What are the major changes to expect in PFA v5?
  • Introduced PFA standard under the localg.a.p. brand
  • Added PFA to the public search of the GLOBALG.A.P. database, similar to GLOBALG.A.P. IFA
  • Updated the control points and compliance criteria documents and checklists to the latest version of GLOBALG.A.P. IFA v5.2
  • Updated the control points and compliance criteria documents and checklists to the latest version of the Global Markets program
  • Harmonized registration and implementation process with the GLOBALG.A.P. IFA process
12. What are the improvements to PFA under version v5?

Change introduced in PFA v5

Improvement due to change

Standard under the localg.a.p. brand now called Primary Farm Assurance (PFA)

  • Better integration into the GLOBALG.A.P. family of standards
  • Name attractive to more markets
  • Potential to include more products in a structured manner under the localg.a.p. brand

Visible to the public

  • Same visibility as GLOBALG.A.P. IFA, but clearly distinguishable
  • If more information is required, visibility packages available

Simplified process

  • The PFA standard is ready for use
  • PFA has similar initiation process as GLOBALG.A.P. IFA
  • Quick and easy to set up
  • Less restrictive on market players that want to be involved
  • Customization handled as a separate project

More cost-effective

  • Lower database programming cost due to standardization of standards and process
  • Bookmarking and GLOBALG.A.P. membership optional
13. Is it possible to get more information on the PFA status of a specific producer/producer group than the information visible in the public search of the GLOBALG.A.P. database?

Parties that require more information must become market participants of the PFA standard. For example, the assessment/checklist report is visible only to market participants of the PFA standard.

Only companies or individuals that have signed the ‘Terms and Conditions for the Use of the GLOBALG.A.P. Database’ can belong to the data access group market participant.

For more information on GLOBALG.A.P. database access packages, please visit our website on Sourcing Certified Products or contact the GLOBALG.A.P. customer support at customer_support@globalgap.org

14. Who can conduct the PFA assessments?

Only certification and/or verification bodies (VBs; if the market accepts VBs conducting the assessments) that have been formally approved by the GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat can register and assess producers against the PFA standard. Please contact our CB administration for more information: terheggen@globalgap.org

15. What is a verification body?

A verification body (VB) is a GLOBALG.A.P. licensed Farm Assurer that has signed a Farm Assurer license agreement with GLOBALG.A.P., acquired the rights from producers to upload and/or register these producers’ activities in the GLOBALG.A.P. database and can conduct PFA assessments, when allowed by the market.

16. What is the difference between a Farm Assurer and a verification body?

Licensed Farm Assurers are companies/individuals that train and consult producers on the PFA or GLOBALG.A.P. standard.
Verification bodies (VBs) are licensed Farm Assurers that can enter data into the GLOBALG.A.P. database and that is formally approved to perform PFA assessments.

17. Can the localg.a.p. logo be displayed on the final products of compliant PFA producers?

The use of the localg.a.p. logo is similar to the use of the GLOBALG.A.P. IFA trademark and logo – it cannot be used on the final product visible to the end consumer.

18. Does the producer get a certificate if they comply with the PFA standard?

The producer does not get a certificate, but receives a letter of conformance when compliance with the specific PFA level is reached.