www.foodsafetyselect.com - Food Safety Select
Posted 17/08/2022

SPOTLIGHT ON: Clare Winkel, Executive Manager at Integrity Compliance Solutions

SPOTLIGHT ON: Clare Winkel, Executive Manager at Integrity Compliance Solutions

This past week, we had the privilege of interviewing Clare Winkel of Integrity Compliance Solutions (ICS). Clare is the Executive Manager of Technical Solutions at ICS and has gained widespread recognition for her in-depth understanding and knowledge of food safety. For many years, Clare and her staff at ICS have offered a range of educational, technological, and consulting services to help the food sector achieve food safety excellence.

Tell us about your background in food safety and how you became involved with Integrity Compliance Solutions.

Since 1987, I've worked in the food industry, working my way up from the meat production floor to Australia's state and federal governments, as a private consultant, 3rd party certification auditor, and trainer. I have audited in 14 countries spanning Europe, North America, the South Pacific (seafood), the Caribbean, and Australia, with experience in farming, wild harvest, processing, storage/distribution, agents/brokers, and retail.

After working as a 3rd party food safety and packaging auditor from 2004 – 2015 I realised that I no longer wanted to live that life and looked for a company that appreciated my skill sets and allowed me to develop solutions for the industry, instead of just issuing non-conformances and 80-page reports. 

What do you think are the biggest challenges for the food industry today when it comes to food safety and compliance? 

Staffing: obtaining the right staff with the right skills and qualifications at the right time. Supply chain: accessing raw materials and packaging in a timely manner and accessing transport. 

Tell us about the solutions ICS offers and how these solutions are helping the food sector.

ICS provides food safety training, consulting, and technology. We help food businesses of any size—large or small—in any location pass their audits and grow their business. ICS specialises in providing flexible and tailored training solutions and technical support for your business needs. We cover ISO-GFSI-CSR management system standards for the industry and specialise in delivering food safety excellence.

ICS is also a distributor of HorizonScan in Australia and New Zealand, a comprehensive global raw ingredient traceability platform, and provides support and sales for INTACT. INTACT is an ERP solution for audits, certifications, and standards, and can make audit and certification processes simple and efficient. HorizonScan assists businesses in meeting consumer and regulatory demands for transparency and accountability across the entire ingredient supply chain. 

What can you tell us about the ICS team and their expertise?

We are experts in food safety (HACCP), operational risk, food fraud (VACCP), site security, threat management (TACCP), and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) risk assessment. Our specialists have extensive technical and regulatory experience with global experience in food safety, site security, auditing, systems and operations management. 

Each of our specialists has a degree and/or postgraduate science and technical qualifications in addition to experience across a range of food sectors, including high-risk/low-risk manufacturing, horticulture, meat, eggs, poultry, seafood, and food service in remote facilities, health, and aged care. ICS has BRCGS-approved trainers for the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety, Agents & Brokers, Storage and Distribution.

Our specialists are actively involved in supply chain management, food safety training, site security training, consulting, and third-party auditing against GFSI standards including BRCGS, SQF, FSSC 22000, and retailer standards (such as Coles, Woolworths, Costco, McDonald's, Burger King, and ALDI).

Are your products and services affordable for small and medium food businesses?  

Yes, our products and services are competitively priced. Many of our services can be virtually and online, which makes many of our services more accessible and more cost-effective to many businesses.

What are ICS's competitive advantages in terms of the products and services on offer?

Our team has extensive expertise and a solid track record in delivering services to the food industry, including:

  • Retailers - ICS has been engaged by major food retailers to improve supply chain performance.
  • Emerging Industries - ICS is at the forefront of industry trends and projects, for example developing a Food Safety Program specific to the Australian seaweed processing industry for the human consumption of seaweed.
  • Scheme Managers & Industry Groups - ICS has consulted with major Australian food industry groups to develop and implement auditable standards to meet food safety and animal welfare concerns.
  • Factory and Building Reviews - ICS has been engaged by a number of manufacturers, distributors and retailers for factory and building plan reviews against regulatory and certification requirements.
  • Food Fraud - ICS was engaged by a  number of Australian major ingredient processors to undertake raw material assessments against food fraud risks. 
  • Consulting Projects - ICS has worked on key industry initiatives and has been engaged by other consultants to provide technical knowledge for projects such as education programs and industry reviews.
  • Public Training Courses - Our specialists offer a professional, engaging, and enjoyable experience so that your employees can get the most out of learning and can apply their knowledge to the business and teams internally. Our professionals are presently working in the sector and closely follow and monitor the latest training, food safety, regulatory, and legislative updates to present the industry's trends and ideas.
  • In-house (Private)Training - ICS delivers private and tailored training to your business, focusing on meeting RTO competencies but also delivering unique personalisation for your business and team. We understand all organisations operate differently. Our private training is designed to support your unique requirements and industry challenges. 
  • ICS Virtual (global boundaries are no longer a barrier) - Experience the savings and convenience of virtual training with the integrity and benefits of trainer facilitated global classroom. Delivered via our Learning Management System (LMS) — we can deliver your training needs to your location and time zones. 
  • ICS e-courses - ICS self-paced online learning offering includes HACCP Refresher for Food Processors, HACCP Refresher for Produce (meeting HARPS), Food Safety Culture, Food Fraud – VACCP, Food Defence – TACCP, Allergen Management & Labelling, Introduction to ISO45001, and a selection of compliance tools. E-courses are accessible anywhere, anytime!
  • Food Safety Trainer (App – IOS or Android) - ICS is self-paced online learning designed for phones or tablets. Talk to us about delivering your training needs through the App! Available for Google and IOs.

What sort of support is available to ICS customers? 

Our team will be with you from initial enquiry through scoping, gap analysis, planning, and documentation, to delivery and follow-up, making sure you have received the best possible service available. We are also committed to providing the most relevant and up-to-date news or trends in the food and allied industries.

If you could only give one piece of advice, what advice would you offer to someone starting a food business?

Know your market, and the regulations. It's also important to understand the science behind your product/s. The best recipe in the world may not meet the customers’ requirements or regulations. And read the allergen list before your start.

What three words best describe Integrity Compliance Solutions? 

Integrity, trust, and transparency.

Where can customers find ICS and how can they get in touch with you or your team?

You can visit our website at www.integritycompliance.com.au, contact us via email at info@integritycompliance.com.au or clare.winkel@integritycompliance.com.au, and you can also get in touch with me via LinkedIn - www.linkedin.com/in/integrity-compliance/.

You may also be interested in >

Member Spotlight Series Search