The inspection guideline particularly provides the details for complete monitoring of the origin of the produce and for implementing a GM-free status along the entire processing chain.
As a rule, the relevant legal provisions of EU law apply for the production, treatment and processing of Donau Soja soya. The GM-free status is based on the minimum requirements set by the Austrian Food Codex (Codex Alimentarius Austriacus) and the corresponding Leitfaden zur risikobasierten Kontrolle auf Gentechnikfreiheit (Guideline on the Risk-Based Monitoring of GMO-Free Production). In any case, animal feed shall be of a quality "geeignet zur Verwendung in OGT-Projekten" (suitable for use in non-GM projects in accordance with the Austrian Food Codex).
The Donau Soja inspection system is comprised of three stages:
- quality assurance and inspection systems operated by the participants in the Donau Soja system;
- external inspections and certifications commissioned by the licensees; these are conducted by certification bodies which are accredited to ISO/IEC 17065:2012, respectively, and approved by Donau Soja Association;
- supervisory inspections in collaboration with an inspection body directly commissioned by Donau Soja Association; supervisory inspections are risk-based at all stages of production, in the order of 10 % of the licensed quantity of Donau Soja soya.
In order to guarantee comprehensive monitoring, all participants in the Donau Soja program are subject to inspections. Confirmation of compliance with the Donau Soja Guidelines as a result of external inspections is passed on within the process chain in the form of a certificate.
Donau Soja farmers are registered with the agricultural collector. During this registration, farmers undertake to comply with the Donau Soja Guidelines on behalf of their agricultural holdings, and accept risk-based sampling within the scope of supervisory inspections by Donau Soja Association.
Primary processors (such as oil mills, toasters, food producers and producers of food ingredients and food additives), processing and/or treating soya beans chemically or physically in a substantial way, conclude a contract with Donau Soja Association in which they pledge, among other things, to:
1. know and comply with the Donau Soja Guidelines;
2. conclude, at their own expense, an inspection contract with an external, accredited certification body which has been approved by Donau Soja Association;
3. accept risk-based sampling within the scope of supervisory inspections directly commissioned and paid by Donau Soja Association;
4. pay a Donau Soja fee to Donau Soja Association (the fee is only charged once within a continuous processing chain at the primary processor stage);
5. impose points 1 to 3 on all their suppliers (including their suppliers' suppliers) by contract, up to and including the agricultural collector.
Compound feed producers also conclude a contract with Donau Soja Association in which they undertake to comply with the above-mentioned points 1 to 3.
Marketers intending to place products with the Donau Soja trademark on the market, undertake not only to comply with the above mentioned points 1 to 3, but also to impose the obligation to comply with the Guidelines, together with the inspection requirements, on their suppliers and their suppliers' suppliers by contract.
The frequencies of both external inspections and supervisory inspections (risk-based sampling), as well as additional requirements for certain participants in the Donau Soja system, are based on the risk of (a) a different origin of the produce or (b) contamination of Donau Soja with GM crops.
Precise obligations for the different risk levels (RL) at the stage of farmers, traders, agricultural collectors, primary processors, compound feed producers, agricultural processors, and marketers, as well as binding inspection frequencies are specified in detailed Donau Soja requirements for all participants in the Donau Soja system.