So far around 400 businesses have participated in HARPS. These businesses have been direct suppliers to the supermarkets and need to be compliant by January 2018.
Growers and packers that do not supply direct to the supermarkets will need to be compliant to the agreed base set of standards by January 2019. To do this these businesses need to have their 2018 audits to a compliant program.
So, what is a compliant program that contains these base standards?
All the major Australian grocery retailers have worked together collaboratively under the Stakeholder Working Group (SWG) to identify these base standards. They have judged that the following programs will be compliant to HARPS for indirect suppliers:
- Freshcare Food Safety and Quality
- SQF Code Level 3
- GLOBAL G.A.P. Integrated Farm Assurance.
What about generic HACCP systems?
They have been judged as not meeting the agreed base elements. If you have a generic HACCP system you will need to move over to one of the approved systems before you do your 2018 audit.
For further information on these requirements, go to HARPS website harpsonline.com.au or talk with your auditor.
Any grower without a compliant program in place by 1 January 2019 will not be able to sell any of their produce into the central market until they have completed a compliant program and passed an audit against that program standard.