First, don’t hesitate to call or write us with any questions about our organization or process. We welcome personal contact and work closely with all of our clients to facilitate the application and subsequent maintenance procedures. Our application is the starting point for all Gluten Free certification requests. A non-disclosure agreement is contained within the application, immediately protecting our clients’ proprietary and confidential information. Then a list of company details is required, which we need for insurance and Gluten Free product claim requirements. Beyond that stage is a detailed formulation form that helps us determine the fee schedule. Without Gluten Free recipe formulation, we cannot produce an accurate fee schedule.
Again, contact us along the way with questions that may arise. We will be happy to discuss any aspect of the application process, the reasons it is structured the way it is, and how to complete the application without concerns. Once the application is completed, we assign our client an Inspector who will remain their Inspector until they have concluded the Gluten Free certification inspection. We are committed to making the period between application and certification as short as possible so you may begin enjoying the benefits of our Gluten Free certification and identifying logo as soon as possible.
Contract Execution and Document Signing
Once our client has received our fee schedule, they will be provided all the necessary licensing agreements, program terms and conditions, which we require to be executed at time of payment.
We accept Check, Money Order, Credit Cards: Visa, Mastercard, and American Express, Cashier’s Check or Bank Wire. All payments are made in the currency of the country for which Gluten-Free certification is requested.
GFSF Standards Manual and Licensing Manual
The careful review of the GFSF Standards Manual and Licensing Manual will prepare our clients operation for the tasks it will need to perform, to stay within the boundary of the standards. It will cover topics such as document management, sourcing of Gluten Free ingredients, Gluten Free co-packers, fulfillment companies, importation and exportation. The Licensing Manual will cover all the do's and don’ts of our Logo usage, size, colors and other specifics which are required as part of the standard.
Client Manual Orientation
Inspectors assigned to each client upon the completion of the application will lead orientation, following the guidelines outlined in the manual at the facility where the product is made. The Inspector will teach our client and their team all aspects of the program, while conducting their first of two inspections on the facility.
Initial and Random Inspection
During your initial inspection, the Inspector confirms that the facility conforms to our standards. Operations that do not pass the initial inspection will be given up to 45 days to correct all action steps as provided by the Inspector. Once completed the Inspector will re-visit the facility, and hopefully approve the application. Once approved our client will receive a Gluten Free Certificate designating the facility Gluten-Free and a product schedule of items which are cleared for production.
• Note •
Businesses that submit a full application void of errors or omissions may see the process completed in as little as 14 days, although our normal turnaround time is 30 days.
For those who are attempting to apply for both a Gluten Free Certification and Organic Certification, we are offering a discount to those clients. Please contact our Program Director for more details.
Program Overview • ISO/IEC 17065
The first lab to incorporate G12 Gliaden Antibody testing and Gluten Free Certification in the world. GFS Labs International (GFSLI), offers the highest Gluten Free testing standards in the industry worldwide. GFSLI never outsources lab tests, ensuring the highest quality controls, and providing the strictest testing methodologies at substantially competitive rates than other Gluten Free Certification “certifiers.”
Gluten Free Certification Backed By Scientific Results.
Gluten Free Certification
As set forth by Gluten Free Standards Foundation we uphold the belief that there is a difference between Certification, Verification and Accreditation.
Who has the authority to Certify? In the agriculture industry only the USDA through their National Organic Program has the legal right to “Certify” a food product “Organic.” However when it comes to Gluten Intolerance there isn’t an established government agency “certifying” that companies are compliant with the minimum 20 ppm threshold, the FDA trusts companies to police themselves. It has been left up to creative business minds to develop such programs. What kind of program offers the least risk and the highest standard? Obvisouly we're going to tell you GFS Laboratories. This is because we as a laboratory have compliance requirements set upon us by the FDA, and other government entities- which clearly sets us apart from any other company that is only verifying vs actually certifying. Legally speaking only a laboratory can "certify" a product Gluten Free. Other companies would have you believe, that despite their documentation or product labeling requirements that they are "certifying" a product when they are merely verifying it.
We define Verification as the process of confirmation. It is only one part of a Certification process. A client submits an application for verification. The first step is verification. For some companies this is all they do, because they don't have the science to certify the verification. They trust that the ingredients are in fact the same ingredients that are being used in the food product. This verification process may also include an onsite inspector who either does or does not match the ingredients listed in the application to the receipts in the office and that visual inspection that those same ingredients are the very same ingredients in the product. This onsite inspection is also to verify that the package labeling meets the minimum standard as forth by the FDA. Companies who use this form of verification may also require the third party to obtain a laboratory test certifying the product meetings the FDA standard. But let us educate you that this is not a certification, by any legal definition.
We define Certification as the end result. In order to be fully certified a client first has to have the submitted application verified. Then it requires a product certification through lab testing. The world recognized compliances ISO/IEC are the industry standard and the only form of vetting the FDA or any other government health agency will accept. GFS Laboratories is an ISO/IEC 17025 single scope lab dedicated only to the scientific measurement of gluten and its various varieties. But what brings us full circle is our ISO/IEC 60 Product Certification accreditation.
Finally we come to Accreditation. The accreditation process ensures that our practices are acceptable, typically meaning that we are competent to test and certify third parties, behave ethically and employ suitable quality assurance. We are the only laboratory in the world dedicated to this science with the integration of a product certification that is recognized globally.
The recent FDA update has shown that 20ppm is the world standard. However, research has shown that severe cases of celiac cannot tolerate in the minutest trace of gluten. Here at GFS Labs we pride ourselves on the use of two of the world’s most reliable methods to achieve what we safely believe is the lowest testing ratio in the world. Through our partner Gluten Free Standards Foundation, we have developed testing protocols that give our clients the peace of mind, that their products are the lowest ppm in the world. We certify products at 3ppm that is over six times below the legal limit.