The IFS HPC 3 standard was published in December 2022. In the following we have summarized all important information about the changes and the schedule for you.

The IFS Standard for Household and Personal Care (HPC), published in 2009, was developed in collaboration with numerous European retailers and trade associations. The standard enables manufacturers and suppliers to be assessed in terms of product safety and hygiene. A second version of the standard was published in 2016. Version 3 was published in December 2022. In the following, we present an overview of all important changes and the transition schedule.


Changes in version 3

There are some important changes with the revision of IFS HPC. One new feature is that companies now have the option to have audits carried out unannounced. This option applies to both recertification audits and initial certifications. Through unannounced audits, companies can increase the credibility of their audit process and demonstrate that they operate every day at the same high level of safety specified in the IFS requirements. To request an unannounced audit, you can contact your account manager at any time.

An important substantive innovation is the introduction of a product safety culture. Much like food safety culture, product safety culture refers to shared values, beliefs, and norms that influence attitudes and behaviors related to product safety within the organization and across divisions. Fostering a robust product safety culture by senior management helps an organization and its employees prevent and detect deviations in all processes that impact the safety, quality and legality of its products. By establishing a product safety culture, employees become instinctively aware of the elements required to produce safe, quality products. You can view the IFS factsheet on product safety culture here.

The goal of the new version of IFS HPC was also to harmonize the IFS HPC requirements with the ISO 22716 requirements for cosmetics GMP. Although the wording of the requirements in the two documents is different in some cases, the basic intent is now the same. On page 139 of the IFS HPC standard, the cross-references between the two standards are clearly listed. 

You can download the IFS HPC 3 standard here.


From version 2 to version 3: Transition period

IFS HPC version 3 was released in December 2022. In July 2023, the transition period begins. 10 months after publication, in October 2023, the application becomes mandatory. 


DQS - your partner for IFS HPC certification

DQS is an accredited certification body for the IFS Household & Personal Care Standard. With qualified auditors all over the world, we are at your disposal. Contact us - we will be happy to discuss your plans! 

Dr. Thijs Willaert

Dr. Thijs Willaert is Global Director Sustainability Services. In this role, he is responsible for the entire ESG service portfolio of DQS. His areas of interest include sustainable procurement, human rights due diligence and ESG audits.


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IFS HPC Version 3 - How to master the transition

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