24 May 2023

IFS Food V8 for food safety published: key changes

The release of IFS Food Version 8 marks an important milestone in the world of food safety and quality management. Designed to optimize food safety, enhance quality management, and prioritize customer satisfaction, IFS Food Version 8 introduces new requirements and guidelines that businesses need to be aware of.

In this article, we delve into the key aspects of the updated standard, offering valuable insights to help companies navigate the evolving landscape of food safety certifications. If you are a food manufacturer, understanding the intricacies of IFS Food Version 8 is essential for maintaining compliance, meeting customers’ expectations, and ensuring the highest levels of food safety throughout the supply chain.


Overview of IFS Food Version 8

IFS (International Featured Standards) is a globally recognized benchmark for auditing food safety and quality management systems. Recently, IFS introduced the eighth version of its Food standard, which further enhances the requirements for food safety, transparency, and compliance. IFS Food Version 8 emphasizes the adoption of a risk-based approach and places increased importance on continuous improvement throughout the entire supply chain.

The latest version encompasses several significant changes, including revised requirements for senior management commitment, food defense, allergen management, and labeling. Furthermore, Version 8 introduces new clauses such as environmental monitoring and food fraud mitigation, highlighting the industry's growing focus on these critical areas.

Key Changes in IFS Food Version 8

Enhanced Senior Management Commitment

IFS Food Version 8 places greater emphasis on senior management's responsibility to establish and maintain a robust food safety culture within their organization. This includes ensuring adequate resources are allocated for effective implementation and compliance with the standard.

Food Defense

The new version expands the requirements for food defense, which is crucial in safeguarding the food supply chain against intentional contamination. It necessitates the implementation of comprehensive food defense plans, risk assessments, and employee training programs.

Allergen Management

Version 8 introduces more detailed requirements for managing allergens, reflecting the increasing prevalence of food allergies. The standard emphasizes proper segregation, cleaning protocols, and clear labeling to prevent cross-contamination and protect consumers with allergenic sensitivities.


The labeling requirements have been updated to align with current regulations and consumer expectations. IFS Food Version 8 emphasizes accurate ingredient listings, allergen declarations, and clear allergen labeling on the product packaging.

Environmental Monitoring

To enhance food safety measures, Version 8 introduces environmental monitoring requirements. This involves assessing and controlling potential microbiological and physical hazards in production facilities. Regular monitoring, corrective actions, and verifications are necessary to ensure the safety and quality of the food products.

Food Fraud Mitigation

Addressing the increasing concern of food fraud, IFS Food Version 8 incorporates requirements for food fraud mitigation. It encourages companies to implement risk assessments, develop control measures, and maintain comprehensive traceability systems to prevent fraudulent activities within the supply chain.

Benefits of IFS Food Version 8

By adhering to IFS Food Version 8, companies can reap numerous benefits. The updated standard helps organizations maintain the highest levels of food safety, providing consumers with greater confidence in the products they purchase. Additionally, achieving IFS Food certification demonstrates a commitment to transparency, quality management, and continuous improvement, boosting customer trust and loyalty.

The emphasis on risk-based thinking and enhanced senior management involvement encourages organizations to proactively identify and mitigate potential risks, safeguarding their reputation and ensuring regulatory compliance. Improved allergen management and labeling requirements reduce the risk of allergen-related incidents, protecting consumers with allergies and dietary restrictions.

Moreover, the inclusion of environmental monitoring and food fraud mitigation measures promotes sustainability and ethical practices within the food industry.