North American Beekeeping Conference


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True Source Certified
North American Beekeeping Conference
Galveston Texas January 6, 2011

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North American Beekeeping Conference

  1. 1. True Source Certified North American Beekeeping Conference Galveston Texas January 6, 2011
  2. 2. Jill Clark – Dutch Gold Honey Tim Burleson – Burlesons Zac Browning – Browning Honey Brent Barkman – Golden Heritage Foods Presentation Outline Overview of True Source Honey History of True Source Certified Main Elements of Certification General Requirements of Certification Invitation to Participate
  3. 3. Overview of True Source Honey TRUE SOURCE HONEY PLEDGE We pledge to protect our customers and consumers, as well as the global reputation of honey products, by ensuring to our utmost ability that honey is ethically sourced in a transparent and traceable manner from known beekeepers and brokers; that honey moves through the supply chain in full accordance with U.S. law and without circumvention of trade duties; that it carries truthful labeling as to its source, has been tested to ensure quality, and has been handled in a safe and secure manner from hive to table.
  4. 4. History of True Source Honey Originally a collaboration of 4 companies. Dedicated to Education and Outreach Sharing a common sourcing philosophy Recognized a need to verify claims related to sourcing practices. Requires independent oversight. Requires open participation. Gave True Source Honey to the Industry Formed a 7 member governing body. Relinquished rights to trademark and ownership.
  5. 5. Introduction of True Source Certified Background The True Source Honey Pledge, or any similar claim, carries little weight without some mechanism to verify the claim – certification is that mechanism. Many members of industry already making a claim similar to the Pledge and engaging in independent activities to support that claim. Requiring specific export documents from country of origin. Refusing to purchase from suspect countries. Conducting extensive testing to assure origin and quality. Requiring proper import documentation.
  6. 6. Introduction of True Source Certified Development Identified a reputable international audit firm. Identified a Processor/Exporter in India willing to beta test the program. Engaged members of industry – Beekeepers, Exporters, Importers, Packers to develop rules and audit criteria. Development continues, participants and other interested stakeholders are encouraged to provide feedback. Opportunity for industry input in mid February.
  7. 7. Main Elements of Certification Use of True Source Certified ID # on Shipments Document Audit – Traceability System Product Audit (Sampling and Analysis for Country of Origin) Purchasing from Approved Countries. North America: Canada, Mexico, United States South/Central America: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Guatemala, Uruguay Europe: Ukraine Asia: China, India, Vietnam Other: Australia, New Zealand
  8. 8. Introduction of True Source Certified EXPORTER AGGREGATOR IMPORTER BEEKEEPER PACKER
  9. 9. Introduction of True Source Certified The Role of 3rd Party Auditors Audit against standards developed by True Source Certified. Maintain all information gathered during an audit as confidential between Intertek and their client – the participant. Make a determination of pass or fail based upon the outcome of the audit and issue a report of findings to the client. Communicate to True Source Certified when participants achieve Certification and are entitled to recognition on the website and eligible to use trademarks. Describe ‘Paper Trail’, ‘Product’. Describe Unique ID Number – ‘Certifying the Honey’ concept.
  10. 10. The Case for Certification Customers, Consumers and the Media Customers looking for an easy way to compare potential suppliers, mitigate risk and avoid bad publicity. Consumers value clear declaration about the origins of the foods they eat, a certification program and logo approach is well understood. (Organic, Rainforest Alliance, Fair Trade). The media is quick to draw attention to sensational stories and paint entire industries with a broad brush – certification by an independent party can counter negative press. Some major US retailers and distributors have already expressed significant interest in the concept of True Source Certified.
  11. 11. The Case for Certification Costs Annual Membership Fee Based upon volumes and specific to position in supply chain. Dedicated to maintenance of website, development and maintenance of standard. Beekeeper Fees Based on size of operation ie. number of colonies Different levels for different groups? Need feedback.
  12. 12. General Requirements of Certification Packer Submit an Annual Fee and pre-certification questionnaire. Maintain import documentation for every load purchased Participate in and pass a Certification Audit Purchase from a Certified Processor/Exporter and through a participating Importer. Submit to random Surveillance Audits to reconcile purchases to sales and sample collection to test for country of origin. Importer -- Note: Importers are not “Certified”, but must be registered participants that assist exporters and packers follow True Source requirements. Processor/Exporter Participate in and pass a Certification Audit. Submit to Random Surveillance Audits. Source Honey for processing and export from only the country of operation (no Imports from 3rd countries for re-export. Maintain records that can show traceability to suppliers and beekeepers that will be audited.
  13. 13. Beekeeper Certification Requirements Good record keeping to show that colony numbers support production. Batch coding of drums,(by tank lot, daily production, truck load, etc) will be an essential element. Accessibility to facility for audits that may be necessary to assist in Packer certification. Dues paid at a level set in proportion to production. (need help to establish this) General support for the program with suggestions that could be incorporated to make it better.
  14. 14. Introduction of True Source Certified True Source CertifiedTM recognizes the value of continuous improvement. Change is both inevitable and encouraged. Program revisions will take place on a scheduled basis. Invitation to participate in a seminar in February. Open participation results in a more robust system. As a Board Member, upon certification. As a participant on an advisory panel.
  15. 15. Invitation to Participate Provide Feedback (Open Comment Period) Right Now In Person During the Convention Through e-mail: Mid February during true source industry roundtable Commit to Certification Participation is open to everyone. Everyone starts at the same place – no company is certified to date. All information is handled by the 3rd party auditors – no risk of competitors exposing information to other participants.