Over 6,000 assessments completed as part of new Red Tractor scheme
Following its launch back in April, more than 6,300 on-farm assessments have been completed as part of Red Tractor’s new remote assessment scheme.
The scheme was created after all physical assessments were halted as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Working with the scheme’s certification bodies and key stakeholders, a new protocol was developed to meet all United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) requirements and to ensure that the supply chain remained secure and fully traceable.
Red Tractor’s CEO Jim Moseley said: “With more than 6,000 remote assessments already completed since we began the roll out, and thousands more in the pipeline, we are delighted how quickly and well this new protocol has been received by members.
“Working with our certification bodies, we’ve continued to test the platforms and systems, and respond to user feedback, to deliver a robust regime for farmers. In doing so we have ensured that we continue to have a secure supply chain, which has every member, meeting every standard, every day.
“Increasingly our farmers are recognising the benefits of remote assessments. Not only as a viable solution for now, but as a real asset for the future- helping to overcome some of the geographic and biosecurity challenges they often face.”
“As we move towards a semblance of normality, with the relaxing of social distancing and travel restrictions, it is important that we take a sensible and measured sustainable approach to how we deliver our inspection regimes for the health and wellbeing of our members and inspectors.”
As the UK begins to open again, Red Tractor is now preparing to introduce the phased roll-out of physical inspections on farms. From Monday 6th July, the resumption of on-farm inspections will principally be for those who meet the following criteria:
- New applicants wishing to become Red Tractor assured.
- Those who have been identified as a poorer performer as part of Red Tractor’s risk-based approach.
- Where live streaming is not a credible option, due to connectivity or technology issues.
At this stage, most inspections will continue to be conducted remotely. This dual approach to assessments for farm members means that from the 6th July, inspections will return to being compulsory.
Red Tractor said a further 2,500 remote assessments are booked in over the coming weeks, while physical assessments will only take place with the full agreement from the farmer and assessor, on health and safety precautionary measures to take, ahead of any visit.