How to Survive a Third Party Audit….the Good, the Bad and the Ugly!

Dolf DeRovira
Flavor Dynamics

Ramesh Shah
Chief Quality Officer
FONA International

Donna Schaffner
Assoc. Dir.: Food Safety, QA & Training
Rutgers Food Innovation Center

Moderated by:

Bob Weeks
Weeks Communications

You can’t afford to miss this panel discussion which will explore third-party audits from all perspectives.

  • How to prepare for an audit – what to say and what not to say
  • What to expect during the audit – who should be there and what documents to have ready
  • Cost-effective ways to improve audit scores
  • Supply chain preventive controls
  • International and cultural differences regarding audits
  • What to do when things turn “ugly”
  • Getting everyone on board to ensure timely compliance with any corrective actions
  • For Flavor Chemists: Understanding how some provisions of FSMA will affect the direction of your focus for new flavorings and innovation for food flavors

About the SpeakerS:

Dolf DeRovira
President, Flavor Dynamics, Inc.

Dolf DeRovira is a Flavor Chemist, President and Chief Executive Officer of Flavor Dynamics, Inc., a Flavor House in South Plainfield, NJ. Among his many duties, he remains active in the development of new flavor products, and continues his creative role in new product development, training and technical marketing concepts.

Dolf holds a joint patent with the Monell Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and has taught courses on Flavor Descriptive Nomenclature, Sensory Evaluation, and Flavor Technology throughout the world. He is past president of the Society of Flavor Chemists and Chemical Sources Association. He serves on the Government Regulations Committee, the International Regulatory Affairs Committee, is on the Executive Committee of the Science Committee and is the Chairman of the Education and Training Committee of the Flavor and Extracts Manufacturers Association. He is currently on the board of directors of NAFFS, and the Co-chairman of the New Board Development Committee of the Research Chefs Association and a professional member of the Institute of Food Technologists.

Dolf is actively involved with education and training and chairs multiple continuing education courses including Food Technology – Rutgers University and Mercer College, Sensory Evaluation, Flavors – Introduction, Definitions and Use – Center for Continuing Education, New Bruinswick, N.J. and has taught Fundamentals of FSMA and HACCP courses at Rutgers University.

He has participated in the FDA sponsored Food Safety Preventative Controls Alliance and other Regulatory Efforts. He is currently on the FSMA Taskforce at FEMA and has taught FSMA and HACCP concepts at Rutgers University.

Dolf has developed many innovative concepts for the industry including: The Chef Assistant, the Coffee Cupper’s Training Kit, and the Dynamic Flavor Profile Method, a Descriptive Profiling Technique.

Wiley Puiblishing is currently publishing the third edition of his book entitled The Dictionary of Flavors.

Ramesh Shah
Chief Quality Officer, FONA International

Ramesh Shah is Chief Quality Officer at FONA International, Inc. in Geneva, Illinois. In this role he is responsible for the global quality and federal, states and local regulatory requirements for the USA, Canada, United Kingdom, China and India. In the past three years he has been involved in startup operations and qualifying customer product approvals at international sites, primarily China and India. Prior to this role, he worked with Quest International, a wholly own subsidiary of Unilever for 25 years as a Director of Quality Assurance for North Americas. He has audited and participated in many manufacturing plants audits around the world.

He holds a B.S. (Honors) in Microbiology from Saint Xavier College, Bombay University, India; a Masters in Microbiology / Chemistry from University of South Florida, Tampa Florida; has completed UIC Business Administration Certification, Chicago; taught flavor quality and regulatory courses at FONA University and is certified in BRC, SQF Auditor and trained for Preventive Controls for Human Foods.

Donna Schaffner
Assoc. Dir. Food Safety, QA & Training, Rutgers Food Innovation Center

Donna F. Schaffner, MS, is the Associate Director - Food Safety, QA & Training at Rutgers University Food Innovation Center. Donna has 20+ years as a Food Safety specialist and consultant in USDA and FDA plants and teaches HACCP, Preventive Controls for Human Foods (PCHF), Food Defense, Microbiology, and various other food safety-related classes in the U.S. and abroad. She develops customized training programs for processing plants to implement HACCP or PCHF, improve audit scores, meet regulatory demands and solve food safety and quality problems. She serves on FDA’s Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance, CASE Food Science & Safety curriculum development, N.J. Ag Education Advisory Council, Exec. Bd. member of the N.J. Food Processors Association & chairs monthly QA Roundtable meetings for the NJFPA. She is a current member of the Food Safety Summit Educational Advisory Board. Donna holds Train-the-Trainer certificates as Lead Instructor for Preventive Controls for Human Food, Meat & Poultry HACCP and Seafood HACCP.

About the Moderator:

Bob Weeks
Weeks Communications

Bob Weeks has spent the last twenty-eight years of his forty years in B-to-B publishing totally immersed in the food industry. His love affair with all things food began in 1985 when he became Publisher of Dairy Record magazine at Chicago-based Gorman Publishing. Shortly after assuming the leadership of Dairy Record, Bob planned and executed a very successful redesign and repositioning of the magazine into Dairy Foods magazine. A short year and a half later, Bob was named Publisher of Gorman's Prepared Foods magazine.

During his five years at Gorman, Bob steered both publications to market dominating positions in their respective markets while becoming deeply involved with several industry associations, including The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), the Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association (FEMA) and the National Association of Flavors and Food Ingredient Systems (NAFFS).

During the late 1980's, Bob detected a need in the food B-to-B area for a magazine that would serve the informational needs of a particular audience that was growing in both importance and influence at food manufacturers…. Research and Development (R&D). So Bob decided to leave Gorman and establish Weeks Publishing Company in January 1991. FOOD PRODUCT DESIGN magazine was then launched in April 1991.

In the late 1990's, Weeks Publishing Company (WPC) developed a close relationship with a new and emerging group, The Research Chefs Association (RCA). A joint-venture agreement was reached between WPC and the RCA which culminated in the successful launch of the RCA's official magazine, Culinology.

In October 2005, Bob decided to sell FOOD PRODUCT DESIGN to Virgo Publishing LLC and continued on as Publisher for the Phoenix based company until June of 2013, when he resigned to once again launch a new company, WEEKS COMMUNICATIONS LLC in order to offer his experience, industry knowledge, and presentation skills to food manufacturers, suppliers, trade show and conference planners as well as food industry associations and other entities.

Bob's broad experience across all food product categories, including but not limited to bakery, confections, beverages, meats, soups, salads and more, along with his knowledge and familiarity with the areas of culinary, foodservice and demographics has prepared him to make in-depth, comprehensive speeches and presentations at sales meetings, trade shows and conferences, and industry associations.


October 26-29, 2017
The Resort at Longboat Key Club
Longboat Key, Fla.

Registration includes two-day seminar program, 3 networking receptions, Friday and Saturday breakfasts, expanded Friday program with lunch, and Saturday night dinner cruise on the Intracoastal Waterway of Sarasota.




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