SQFI: A Pioneer in Agricultural Food Safety Compliance
9/8/2014
Sarah A. Malenich and Katherine Okello
Monday, September 8, 2014
by: Sarah A. Malenich and Katherine Okello

Section: Fall 2014




Consumers don’t buy food they don’t trust. The Safe Quality Food Institute (SQFI) has partnered with American Feed Industry Association to establish comprehensive standards of excellence that go beyond existing regulations to maximize food and feed safety. Setting a standard of excellence in the food safety compliance industry, we are proud to be pioneers in issuing compliance standards for the agricultural feeding industry. Excelling at every aspect of feed production is “Our Responsibility, Our Promise” to regulators, customers and American consumers. 
 
Today’s farmers and ranchers are more educated about the feed they’re providing to their livestock and poultry and are requiring more information about feed quality. Our certified partners in the feed industry benefit from an internationally recognized certification demonstrating their commitment to the delivery of a safe feed supply for the growth and care of animals. This further ensures that consumers receive a safer, better quality food supply from healthier and more productive animals.
 
About SQF Certification
 
Obtaining SQF certification isn’t just about protecting consumers, food service providers and retailers. It’s also about protecting the producers themselves. SQF certification not only gives growers assurances that the food they’re selling has been produced to the highest possible standards, it also puts their contact information in an instantly accessible database that retail and foodservice buyers around the world can look to for suppliers they can trust.
 
For manufacturers, SQF certification doesn’t stop at just assessing risk. The SQF standard is about limiting food safety incidents and recalls. It’s also unique among certification programs in that it focuses on safety and quality, giving retailers and food service providers around the world even more reason to seek out manufacturers, processors and distributors that have earned SQF certification.
 
SQF certification is based on government and industry food safety requirements, so businesses at every level have the ready documentation they need to demonstrate the steps they’ve taken to increase food safety. In addition, the SQF program provides specialized guidance documents on standards within specific categories, such as egg processing, and fresh produce packhouse operations.
 
SQF certification isn’t just for giant suppliers. SQF makes certification more attainable for smaller companies by dividing the process into three steps: from Level 1, which incorporates fundamental food safety controls appropriate for low-risk products, to Level 3, indicating a comprehensive implementation of safety and quality management systems.
 
Benefits of SQF Certification
 
As the only current Global Food Safety Initiative-recognized organization providing compliance standards for the production of livestock and animal feed, SQFI is proud to display our commitment to the production of safe food at all levels of the supply chain and to assume global leadership in this area. While we are still proud to ensure safe quality food “from farm to fork,” we have greater pride in demonstrating that our commitment exceeds that standard to the point of evaluating the production of animal feed.
 
Additional benefits of SQF certification for feed industry professionals include:
 
Competitive Advantages
  • Promotes confidence in food safety, quality and legality
  • Enhances your marketing image
Cost Advantages
  • Provides a platform for consistent improvement in process quality and safety, allowing processors valuable time and resources historically lost to multiple and conflicting audit standards
  • Improves process management by helping to proactively identify and manage risk so as to avoid stock recoveries, market withdrawals and rework
  • Increases yield by reducing material waste
  • Streamlines risk and process management
Safety and Quality Advantages
  • Addresses food safety requirements
  • Provides proof of due diligence
  • Encourages more responsible agricultural and manufacturing processes
  • Complies with regulatory requirements

For more information on SQF, contact Sarah Malenich at smalenich@fmi.org.
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