Dear Fairtrade certified customers,
COVID-19 continues to affect communities in 213 countries and territories around the world. Meanwhile, the pandemic plays out differently from country to country.
Update as of 12 December
While the situation has slowly cleared up in some countries during the past few months, it has again became more challenging in others. FLOCERT is therefore continuing to carefully assess where onsite audits can be conducted without posing any health risk to our customers and their communities, nor to our auditors and staff. Where we cannot yet conduct onsite audits, we will continue to use remote audits as an alternative.
Where remote auditing is not yet approved as an option by Fairtrade International, we will continue to defer audits. This mainly applies to Artisanal Small-scale Mining Organisations, Organisations certified against the Fairtrade Climate Standard and companies certified against the Fairtrade Textile Standard.
If you have an audit coming up, we will in any case contact you and inform you about our individual approach for it. For any questions on remote audits, please check out our Frequently Asked Questions. And your certification analyst will be happy to answer any further questions you may have.
Update as of 1 September
More producer audits may be conducted as remote audits and we have started collecting CODImpact data in remote audits.
As the situation slowly clears in some countries, we will start resuming onsite audits where possible. Guaranteeing the health, safety and smooth operations of the millions of farmers, producers and traders who continue to work through the pandemic remains FLOCERT’s top priority. We will therefore consider carefully where we can again conduct onsite audits without posing any health risk to our customers and their communities, or to our auditors and staff. The decision will be based on the local situation and regulations as well as auditors’ required travel routes. The main requirement will be that there are no travel restrictions within the region where our auditees and auditors are located. In order to assess restrictions, we will listen to the customer’s feedback. If there are no valid reasons not to conduct the audit, the usual auditing approach will apply.
FLOCERT’s remote audit approach, started on 23 March, continues
Where we cannot yet conduct onsite audits, we will continue with the remote audit methodology until further notice. We will continue to keep you up to date on any overall developments and our analysts will be in touch on an individual basis for any upcoming audits.
FLOCERT Director of Operations
Tutorial for remote audits for Fairtrade traders
Original post from 22.04.2020
From 23 March 2020 onwards, all physical audits were amended as for the following customer groups:
This crisis is unprecedented and has, as you know, an important impact on all our activities.
The current solution offered by FLOCERT is meant to provide an immediate relief to Fairtrade organisations. Our remote audit methodology hence is currently applicable only until 30 June and directed towards a small group of customers that have audits scheduled. FLOCERT currently does not offer any renewal audits or initial audits.
FLOCERT is also working on a longer term plan on how to best manage credibility concerns during the ongoing Corona pandemic.
We thank you for your understanding. We remain at your disposal for any clarifications.