Feature
Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Audley Shaw (centre); and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Jamaica National Agency for Accreditation (JANAAC), Sharonmae Shirley (left), hand Chief Food Storage Officer at FSPID, Roy McNeil (second right), the Division’s ISO 17020 accreditation certificate during the CEO’s recent World Accreditation Day Breakfast Awards, held at Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel. Also in the photograph are JANAAC Deputy Chairman, Lynden Nugent (second-right); JANAAC Accreditation Manager, Nickoe Boothe-Thompson (second left) and the event’s Master of Ceremonies and Chief Technical Director in the Ministry, Courtney Cole (background).
Photo: Adrian Walker

Story Highlights

  • The Food Storage and Prevention of Infestation Division (FSPID) has become the first local food inspection body to be accredited by the Jamaica National Agency for Accreditation (JANAAC).
  • The FSPID, which is a division of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, was recently awarded its accreditation certificate for successfully complying with the standard of ISO/IEC 17020.
  • ISO/IEC 17020 specifies requirements for the competence of bodies performing inspection and for the impartiality and consistency of their inspection activities.

The Food Storage and Prevention of Infestation Division (FSPID) has become the first local food inspection body to be accredited by the Jamaica National Agency for Accreditation (JANAAC).

The FSPID, which is a division of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, was recently awarded its accreditation certificate for successfully complying with the standard of ISO/IEC 17020.

ISO/IEC 17020 specifies requirements for the competence of bodies performing inspection and for the impartiality and consistency of their inspection activities.

“It is a distinct pleasure for the FSPID to be awarded this certificate of accreditation. We are indeed proud to be the first inspection body in Jamaica accredited under the ISO/IEC 17020 standard,” Chief Food Storage Officer (CFSO), Roy McNeil, tells JIS News.

He shares that the process of being accredited was tedious but well worth the investment of time, energy and resources by the FSPID, which began its operations in 1958.

“The FSPID is mandated to ensure the safety and wholesomeness of all food and feed entering commerce in Jamaica and is governed by the Food Storage and Prevention of Infestation Act of 1958,” Mr. McNeil states.

The CFSO notes that the FSPID, having set the precedence of being the only accredited inspection body in the island, is committed more than ever to operating at a high quality standard.

“The work has just begun and we are committed to providing Jamaica with quality inspection services, and we look forward to continuously improving our services in the coming years. In fact, the FSPID is currently 80 per cent on its way to being ISO 9001 (Quality Management System) certified,” Mr. McNeil says.

He points out that the accreditation has helped the organisation to streamline its inspection process and gain international recognition for its commitment to quality inspections.

“The process of being accredited has improved traceability and documentation within the FSPID and ultimately strengthened our mandate of proving safe and wholesome food and feed entering commerce,” Mr. McNeil informs.

He notes that the accreditation has resulted in more satisfied internal and external customers and has fostered a greater appreciation for the services the FSPID provides.

“Being accredited has boosted our staff morale and strengthened our work culture. The process leading up to the accreditation also improved the cohesiveness among various units within the FSPID. All units played a part in helping us to become the first inspection body in the island to be accredited under ISO/IEC 17020 standards,” Mr. McNeil says.

He highlights that the FSPID’s conformity to international standards reflects on the country’s ability to compete in the global market space as well as the Government’s thrust to develop the various sectors of the country.

“We recognise the importance of using accredited services such as inspections to help reduce technical barriers to trade. I want to also thank the Minister (Hon. Audley Shaw) for piloting the Bill to amend the Food Storage and Infestation Act in Parliament, which is now with the Senate and will soon come into law,” Mr. McNeil tells JIS News.

The amendment to the Act will help govern the operations of the FSPID as it carries out its mandate.