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Safety & Quality Assurance

Safety & Quality Assurance

We are committed to maintaining and improving the highest quality products and services that meet or exceed our specifications, our customers' expectations and all applicable industry and regulatory standards. We have developed and are continuously improving food safety and quality assurance systems that meet the highest standards in the industry.

Driven by our philosophy of continuous improvement, advancing our food safety and quality management systems are an ongoing priority for the company. We also voluntarily participate in the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), a set of industry standards designed to improve food-safety management systems across the supply chain.

As a global leader in natural and organic foods, we have well-defined safety and quality expectations for our suppliers worldwide. Our food safety and quality requirements are applied not only to our facilities, but also to our contract manufacturers.

SunOpta has integrated food safety and quality assurance systems to ensure high quality, safe products for our customers. We maintain stringent internal standards and requirements to ensure safety across all processes and operations through:

  • Quality Assurance staff assigned to all facilities
  • Science-based validation of our processes and preventative controls
  • Food safety management system reviews by our quality teams, 3rd party agencies and regulatory authorities
  • Customer audits of our food safety systems and facilities
  • Comprehensive food product monitoring to specification and testing of incoming and finished products
  • Food safety training of production personnel
  • Integration of a risk-based supplier approval and management system

The SunOpta food safety and quality assurance management system has been developed to include food safety standards such as Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points, programs in sanitation, traceability and allergen control. These standards define our operating system and include management responsibilities, document control and record keeping. In addition, the program is aligned with international standards.

We have also established programs to address the handling and preservation of Identity Preserved, non-GMO and organic certified products. Our quality system encompasses all purchased and contracted material as well as in-process and finished materials used and produced at our facilities.

In 2015, SunOpta's Hope, Minnesota facility became the first food manufacturing facility in the United States to receive U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Process Verified Program (PVP) verification for Non-Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO)/Non-Genetically Engineered (GE) products. To learn more, click here for details on our program, or visit the USDA's PVP website.

Our Food Safety and Quality Assurance team conducts supply chain audits from farms to production facilities to verify that proper controls are in place. Additionally, we conduct third party microbiological and pesticide sampling and testing on our organic retail consumer products to ensure they meet regulatory and company standards.