Worldwide leading company in the areas of inspection, testing, verification and certification (Inspection, Verification, Testing and Certification). SGS SA (formerly Société Générale de Surveillance) was founded in 1878. During the First World War, the headquarters were moved from Paris to Geneva (Switzerland) in 1915, where it is still located today. A young emigrant from Latvia observed the loading of cargo ships in the port city of Rouen in northern France, where he noticed some inconsistencies. With the financial help of an Austrian friend, he founded a company. Within one year, branches were opened in the three largest French ports, Le Havre, Dunkirk and Marseille. The aim of the first and long only service was to take appropriate measures to transport grain to the destination port without loss through loss or theft. The “Full Outturn Guarantee” (FOG), which is still valid today, was assured as a new innovative business idea.
After the Second World War (1939-1945), the range of offers was constantly expanded and several similar companies were taken over. There are ten business areas that are Agriculture; Automotive (automotive sector); Consumer Testing (textiles, household appliances, furniture, food, electronics); Environmental (environmental compatibility, air and water quality, impact climate Change ); Governments and Institutions; Industrial - Industrial Services Industry to Financial Institutions); Life science (pharmaceuticals, clinical studies); Minerals (fuels, metals, biofuels, fertilizers, cement, minerals); Oil, Gas and Chemicals; Systems and Services Certification (management systems regarding quality, environment, occupational safety, social responsibility, security and business continuity).
The "Inspection" division is concerned with checking and verifying the quantity, weight and quality of merchandise. The “verification” provides proof that products and services comply with global standards and local regulations. “Testing” checks the product quality and examines whether health and safety regulations as well as legal regulations are complied with. The "Certification" confirms that products, systems or services meet the requirements that states, standards or customers have specified. One of the orientations is based on the rule IFS (International Featured Standards - International Food Standard).
The World Bank recommends, among other things, the SGS carried out before shipping (PSI) as a means of fighting corruption and especially for countries with low tax income and a high corruption rate. In 1981 the company went public. Today it is the world's leading company in this sector with a worldwide network of experts with around 86,000 employees in 1,800 offices or laboratories in around 120 countries around the world. In the viticulture sector, organic farms are certified and checked. Other similar international organizations are ECOCERT and ICEA, All can be different per country as one of the state approved bio (Austria) or Inspection bodies (Germany) act. See also under the topic Organic viticulture,