Food Safety

Producing safe, quality dairy for families around the world is a responsibility we take seriously. Food safety is our top priority in our plants and on our members’ farms. To ensure we are meeting the highest safety standards, we conduct ongoing employee training in our plants, perform regular testing on finished products as well as ingredients throughout our supply chain, and offer continuing education and resources to our members about milk quality and safety.

Our goals:

  • Comply with all internal and external food safety, regulatory and quality requirements
  • Ensure all ingredients, starting with raw materials, through processing to final retail, are produced with integrity
  • Never compromise on providing products that meet or exceed customer and consumer expectations

How we deliver on our goals:

Safe quality foods
In 2009, DFA implemented the Safe Quality Foods (SQF) initiative in all of its plants in the United States. Developed and executed by the Safe Quality Food Institute, the program certifies that a supplier’s food is created, prepared and handled according to the highest possible standards throughout the supply chain.

Plants that undergo the SQF certification process have documented proof that food safety protocols are in place within their facilities. SQF audits include an evaluation of a plant’s facilities, checking for potential food safety issues, and the plant’s policies and procedures, all the way down to employee compliance.

Employee training
Plant employees regularly undergo ongoing training and participate in industry and Cooperative drills and conferences. For example, DFA’s annual Maintenance for Food Safety Conference brings together maintenance, safety and food quality personnel from all DFA plants to undergo training and share the latest best practices in safety. In addition, regular crisis drills involving several DFA-produced brands allow staff to run through crisis and recall protocols in close to real-time.

DFA plants upgrade or replace equipment on an ongoing basis, and refine existing policies as well as develop new policies and procedures to ensure ongoing product safety.