How to Obtain SQF Certification from Scratch

How to Obtain SQF Certification from Scratch

Welcome to the world of SQF certification! If you’re new to the world of food safety and looking to obtain SQF certification, you’ve come to the right place. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the process of obtaining SQF certification from scratch with the help of SFPM Consulting and Felicia Loo, a registered SQF consultant.

What is SQF Certification?

SQF stands for Safe Quality Food and is a globally recognized food safety certification. It is designed to ensure that food products are produced, processed, and handled in a safe and hygienic manner. SQF certification provides assurance to consumers that the food they are consuming meets the highest standards of safety and quality.

Why Choose SFPM Consulting and Felicia Loo?

SFPM Consulting is a leading consulting firm specializing in food safety and quality management systems. We guide you through the entire process of obtaining SQF certification. My name is Felicia Loo and I am a registered SQF consultant and the founder of SFPM Consulting. I have worked with SQF program for over 10 years.

The Process of Obtaining SQF Certification

Obtaining SQF certification involves several steps:

Step 1: Pre-Assessment

The first step is to pre-assess your current food safety practices and systems. This will help identify gaps or areas needing improvement before applying for SQF certification. Working with us means that we will work closely with you to assess your current practices and provide recommendations for improvement.

Step 2: Documentation and Implementation

Once the pre-assessment is complete, the next step is to develop and implement the documentation and procedures required for SQF certification. This includes developing a food safety management system, standard operating procedures, and training programs. We will help you with the program development and guide you through this process, ensuring you have programs that comply with the current SQF standards.

Step 3: Training and Education

Training and education are crucial for the successful implementation of SQF standards.

Unlike others that deliver the manual and leave you wondering what to do with your manuals, we will provide training sessions to educate your staff on SQF requirements, food safety practices, and the importance of maintaining a safe and hygienic environment. 

Working with us also means guidance on how to develop your training programs and setting up a succession plan for your team to learn how to manage the SQF standards expectation.

Step 4: Internal Audits

Internal audits are conducted to assess the effectiveness of your food safety management system and identify any areas that need improvement. We will assist you in conducting internal audits or guide your team in learning and implementing the internal audit.

For audit preparation, we will even work with you to provide guidance on addressing any non-conformities.

Step 5: Certification Audit

Certification audit is one of those times when your food safety programs are being tested. We offer on-site support and off-site support depending on your comfort level with your food safety programs. We will work with you to perform a mock audit to ensure that you are ready for the audit.

Step 6: Ongoing Support

Obtaining SQF certification is just the beginning. Getting your team familiarize with SQF requirements and getting your food safety system stabilized is important to ensure continuity.

Some folks will work on their program 2 months before the audit thinking it is ok. This is a true story- but it is not ok. Any missing records will be lost plus it creates a negative food safety culture that doesn’t help your food operations move forwards and stresses your SQF Practitioners.

Don’t be one of these folks. Let me help you to support you to help your team learn how to maintain your certification requirements. This includes conducting regular audits, providing training updates, and assisting with any changes or updates to SQF standards.

When your team is ready, my job is fully complete and we can move on to minimal support for your SQF program. That way you truly have a stable program to work with and us to support you through your food brand and business growth.

Customized programs and support

Obtaining SQF certification may seem like a daunting task, but with our guidance and support, it becomes a manageable and rewarding process.

Every single client is unique and we believe in meeting client’s needs. That is why all our SQF services are customized to your needs and budget.

Ready to take the leap and obtain SQF certification, reach out to find a Time with me today!