Asia Pacific Centre for Food Integrity

Rules for Membership

Application

1.  These rules apply to ordinary membership to the Asia Pacific Centre for Food Integrity (The Centre) and apply to all entities that have duly applied, been assessed and judged to have met the membership standards and officially notified that they have been admitted as members.

2. These rules shall apply for as long as the entity retains membership and for a period of three (3) calendar months after The Centre has officially notified the member that membership has ceased. This period may be extended if agreed by both parties.

3. From time to time these rules may be updated. All current members shall be notified of changes.

4. For the purposes of Rules 1, 2 , 3 & 21, official notification shall be electronic communication sent to the entities nominated address by either the Executive Director or the Chief Executive of The Centre, and shall have been deemed to be sent according to the date of the electronic communication.

 

Centre Membership

5.  Membership is provided, renewed and revoked at the sole discretion of The Centre.

6.  Membership shall not be altered, transferred or sold in any way without the express permission of The Centre.

 

Membership benefits

7. Verifiable certification shall be provided to members of The Centre for as long as the membership is valid. Certificates provided shall be able to be publically verified on The Centre’s website www.asiapacificfoodintegrity.com .

8. The “APCFI Member” logo (the Logo) shall be permitted to appear on the packaging and promotional material of the food products of members that have been subject to assessment.

                8.1 The Logo can be accompanied by a QR code that directs the user to The Centre’s website     (see Rule 7), together with a “verify me” message,

                8.2 The use of Logo is intended to demonstrate that the member approaches internationally     accepted practice for food safety, food sustainability and food vulnerability procedures,

                8.3 The use of the Logo and membership that it represents shall at no time be represented       as a guarantee of the safety of the food.

 

9. Each member shall appear on a publically available database of members. The database is intended to be used for membership verification purposes by the consumer. This database shall present, in both English and Mandarin :

                9.1 the name and location of the member,

                9.2 a description of the food products produced by the member and for which the member       has been assessed,

                9.3 dates of start, renewal and expiry of membership,

                9.4 special features of note.

10. Each Centre member shall have a publically available summary description of it available on The Centre’s website. This summary description may include a snapshot description of the enterprise, describe its products, outline its assessment history and highlight sustainability features of the enterprise’s operation. Photographs may be included. This summary description shall remain on The Centre’s website for as long as the enterprise remains a member and shall be updated when necessary. From time to time a selected members (with their agreement) will have an extended description of their enterprise highlighted on the publically available section of the website.

11. Each valid member shall be given access to a restricted section of The Centre’s website reserved for members.  The members section of the website shall contain, in both English and Mandarin (inter alia):

                11.1 up to date copies of these rules and any other relevant requirements,

                11.2 a member advisory,

                11.3 a food trends and analysis advisory,

                11.4 news of upcoming conferences, seminars and training, together with preferred      registration opportunities and special rates,

                11.5 a gallery of free to use food photographs,

                11.6 previous conference presentations,

                11.7 priority consultation service at advantageous rates.

                11.8  a help request facility.

               

Member obligations

12. Both applicants and members of The Centre shall provide reasonable facility access to assessors and investigators authorised by The Centre, and fully and immediately provide to the assessors and investigators such food product and food chain-related information as reasonably requested. Failure to comply with this rule shall be considered a critical non-compliance (see Rule 27)

13. Access and information requests by authorised assessors and investigators shall be deemed to be reasonable if the access or information can be shown to be needed to assess the adherence to food integrity standards expected by The Centre.

14. Information provided by the enterprise shall be regarded as confidential within legal requirements.

15. For the avoidance of doubt, the member is expected to comply with all applicable laws and regulations of all relevant Regulators.  This is a fundamental part of The Centre’s standards.  Proof of adherence will be required, which may be considered to be equivalent to some Centre standards.

16. The member is obliged to notify The Centre immediately should, during the course of the membership the following occur:

                16.1 any major food safety incident or occurrence that may lead to a major food incident,

                16.2 any major non-compliance identified by relevant Regulators,

Any material changes to:

                16.3 the production processes,

                16.4 the supply chain,

                16.5 the member’s location or ownership status,

                16.6 the products that the member produces.  

17. The member is expected to behave in a manner that does not bring The Centre into disrepute.

18. The member is expected to guard restricted access to the website to prevent unauthorised access or use.

 

Renewal of membership

19. The Centre membership must be renewed annually.

20. Renewal application must be received one month prior to membership expiry.

21. Should membership expire without renewal application, one month notice shall be given before membership is revoked. The member shall be officially notified (see Rule 4) on the expiry date.

22. Membership must be continuous. Renewals can only apply from the date of expiry.

 

Cessation of membership

23. Membership may cease under the following situations:

                23.1 at the member’s request,

                23.2 as the result of failure to renew after the notice period has passed,

                23.3 as the result of a critical non-compliance as judged by The Centre.

24. As soon as membership has ceased, the enterprise must immediately remove all references to membership from media and promotional material. The APCFI Member logo must be removed from all new product packaging.

25. A three month period of run out of existing product stock will be permitted.

Reapplication

26.  Any Enterprise is able to apply for membership at any time. This includes Enterprises that have had membership lapsed or revoked in the past. Membership re-admission may be subject to additional requirements.

 

Critical non-compliance

27. Critical non-compliance may be declared by The Centre under the following circumstances:

                27.1 Failure to comply with Rule 12 – Access and information provision,

                27.2 Failure to notify in accordance with Rule 16 – Notification in event of incident or       change,

                27.3 Any material incident where the member or applicant has been found to have         deliberately withheld information or misled the assessor,

                27.4 The discovery of any situation which in the professional judgement of the assessor               represents a measurable and immediate food safety risk,  

                27.5 Any substantial breach of Rule 17 – behaviour bringing Centre into disrepute,

                27.6 Any substantial breach of Rule 18 – guarding access to website,

                27.7 Any non-compliance that the member has repeatedly failed to correct over              two or   more assessments.

 

Monitoring

28. The Centre shall maintain a continuous monitoring oversight of the media, advertising, labelling or other activities of members to ensure adherence to these rules. This monitoring may be direct or through agents authorised by The Centre.

 

Appeals and disputes

29.  Any member may lodge an appeal against a decision that has resulted in punitive action by the Centre. Appeals may be lodged with the Chief Executive Officer of the Centre within a calendar month of the decision being notified, setting down the grounds for appeal.  Any action remains in force until a review is completed.

30. In the event of any dispute arising from membership:

                30.1 The definitive version of these rules is the English version,

                30.2 New Zealand law applies.

ENDS