SCS Global Services has been suspended from carrying out new ASC certifications in China following a review.
SCS Global Services is a Conformity Assessment Body (CAB) – the bodies which independently audit farms and make certification decisions against the ASC standards. Like all CABs, SCS Global is accredited by another independent body, Accreditation Services International (ASI). In order to assure robust and accurate audits, only CABs which have been accredited by ASI may carry out certification against the ASC standards.
ASI completed a review of actions and decisions taken by SCS in China and found breaches with the ASI Accreditation Requirements. As a result, SCS has been suspended for a minimum of six months.
During the suspension period, SCS may not enter into new agreements for certification or perform initial certification services in China, but can carry out surveillance audits for existing clients.
Like certified farms, CABs are certified for a set period of time, but if their performance drops and they fail to meet the requirements during this period, corrective action will be taken which can include the suspension or withdrawal of their accreditation.
Another CAB was suspended by ASI earlier this year. DNV GL Business Assurance Norway AS was suspended from certifying farms against the ASC Shrimp and Seabass, Seabream, and Meagre standards worldwide. The suspension was for a period of six months and took effect on 10 February.
ASC is a third-party certification programme which assures greater independence of certification decisions. While ASC develops and manages the farm standards, all certification decisions are taken by independent CABs, which are themselves accredited by the independent ASI. However, ASC is continually monitoring the programme and assisting CABs and ASI to ensure all decisions are fair, robust and consistent.
The ASI website contains more information about the suspension of SCS Global Services and the suspension of DNV GL. More information about the ASC’s work on programme assurance can be found on the ASC website’s Programme Assurance page, and details about the certification status of every ASC certified farm can be found using the Find a Farm page.