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What is Safe Quality Food (SQF)?

By Michael Collins, October 29, 2018

Tags: Food Safety

The Safe Quality Food Program, or the SQF, is known as an extensive food safety program that involves legitimate retailers, owners, and food industry participants across the globe. This program is truly international, which makes it extremely important for the purposes of the importation and exportation of food goods. The SQF has already been recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative because both movements exist to keep consumers safe by abiding by a specific code designed for all aspects of the food industry. The SQF is thought of as a third-party, overarching program designed to meet industry, regulatory and customer requirements up and down the food supply chain with emphasis on the “food-to-fork” philosophy.

SQF Certified

The SQF is all about giving customers piece of mind when they shop for their food, knowing that the product they just bought at the market was grown, processed, shipped and handled in accordance with a highly efficient program that operates on a global scale. Sounds good, right? It certainly means a great deal to the millions of people shopping for their families at their local grocer. The SQF Program works with farms, warehouses and factories in establishing extensive, comprehensive food safety programs. After setting up the necessary framework and the company is off and running with the training offered, the program conducts an annual audit to see if the facility can be officially deemed “SQF-Certified.”

3rd party certification

The unbiased, independent nature of the SQF is a catalyst for achieving credibility within the industry. With a third-party certification system in place, the audit process is taken more seriously, and can benefit companies looking to meet international and domestic food safety regulations.


The SQF Program operates with three levels of certification:

Food Safety Fundamental
This is a general overview of simple food safety practices for typically low-risk products. This layer is to establish a foundation for a company to safely produce and manufacture their product.
HACCP-Certified Food Safety Plans
Intended for high-risk products, this layer is considered the minimum precautionary measure. With this process, suppliers are asked to conduct a food safety risk assessment of the product using the HACCP method.
Comprehensive Quality Management Systems Development
This is the most extensive level of certification the SQF has to offer. The third level of certification can only be achieved by first complying with the first two levels of certification.

iNECTA Food, Seafood and Produce

You may be wondering how a company can hope to keep track of all the information necessary to compose an accurate report in order to be SQF certified. That is where a top-notch cloud-ERP system like iNECTA comes in handy. iNECTA’s food, seafood and produce solutions all help companies adhere to compliance and regulation standards like the SQF Program. Technology from Microsoft is leveraged to provide efficient and accurate traceability for growers, packers, distributors, manufacturers etc who aim to comply with regulations laid forth by the SQF Program.

Would you like to learn more about our Food ERP Software?