Safe Quality Food (SQF) System Development and Maintenance

SQF Fundamentals and Advanced SQF Courses are Available !

 What is SQF?

SQF is a globally recognized food safety audit and certification. It strengthens suppliers and  brings confidence to buyers.  Why choose SQF?    It is one of the most commonly recognized, accredited audits available.  Certified companies are respected and have free marketing through the sqfi website where they are listed for interested buyers.  The SQF Code offers flexibility and through the aid of Mrs. Crawford, many have discovered, they can achieve what they once thought was too complex.  The SQF Code includes three levels of certification:
Level 1: Food safety fundamentals
Suppliers must establish pre-requisite programs incorporating fundamental food safety controls which are essential to providing a sound foundation for the production and manufacturing of safe food.

Level 2: Certified HACCP based food safety plans
In addition to Level 1 requirements, suppliers must complete and document a food safety risk assessment of the product and process using the HACCP method, as well as an action plan to eliminate, prevent or reduce food safety hazards.

Level 3: Comprehensive food safety and quality management system
In additional to Level 1 and Level 2 requirements, suppliers must complete and document a food quality assessment of the product and its associated process, to identify the controls needed to ensure a consistent level of quality.

Why is certification good for my business?
It is a statement that the supplier’s food safety plans have been implemented in accordance to the HACCP method, and that the validation and verification of the food safety plan has been evaluated and determined effective to manage food safety.

This certification also assists greatly in ensuring regulatory compliance as the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) moves forward, mandating formal food safety plans.

Because SQF is accepted by a large number of retailers globally, participating in this certification program will help eliminate much the redundancy of current audits and customer visits.  The number of retailers and wholesalers  requiring their producers and suppliers to implement the SQF program continues to grow.

The initial SQF course is offered at different times  and is designed to provide participants with an understanding of the SQF Code.  The Advanced Practitioner Course will also soon be available.

As a former industry worker and leader and SQF Auditor,  Mrs. Crawford brings realistic advice regarding the SQF Code.

The course promotes an understanding of the SQF Code,  creates a knowledge base to facilitate the successful implementation of an SQF System and shows how a HACCP-based approach manages food safety and quality hazards in an operation.

This course is offered by a licensed SQF Training Center.

Next Basic SQF Course: June 19-20, Charlotte, NC

Contact to RegisterNK


Day 1

  • Introduction and exercise – the current status of third party audits
  • Introduction to SQF, Implementing SQF Systems Training, Cost of Quality
  • Preparing for SQF Certification:
    • Prepare for Certification; Code description; Registration; The SQF practitioner
  • SQF Certification Process:
    • Overview, Selecting a CB; The Audit; Granting and Maintaining Certification
  • Implementing an SQF System:
    • Management Commitment; Food Safety Plan; Food Quality Plan;
    • Documenting alternative controls

Day 2

  • Ensuring the HACCP Plan demonstrates meeting requirements.
  • Developing  a HACCP –based Food Quality Plan
  • Module 2: SQF System Elements
  • Exercise: Preparation of documentation to meet the Code
  • Module 11: GMP and Post Farm Gate
  • Preparing for an audit – advice from an SQF Auditor
  • Practice Examination

All participants will receive a certificate from The HACCP Consulting Group. An examination is optional after taking this course in order to receive a certificate from SQFI. This exam is an additional fee invoiced by SQFI and must be taken online by participating trainees independently. Instructions on taking this exam and a practice exam will be given at the course.


The SQF Advanced Practitioner course is a two-day course designed for the current SQF practitioner who is seeking further education on how to improve and maintain their company’s SQF System. The SQF Advanced Practitioner course provides the tools needed to improve and advance the food safety system in the facility and manage the ongoing maintenance of the SQF Program.

This activity-based course addresses the following three areas:

1.       Using the internal audit program to manage, maintain and enhance the SQF system. Including best practices on how to conduct internal audit and taking internal audit results and assigning risk and criticalities as well as observations and gaps that require immediate action

2.     Using the corrective action/preventive action process as a tool to identify trends and build continuous improvement. This includes best practices for developing corrective action and preventative action processes for collaboration and effective implementation. It also offers tips and tools for measuring and develop trend analysis.

3.       Improving the demonstration of management’s commitment and developing and prioritizing key performance indicators. This will include how to improve operational efficiencies and quality and create meaningful KPIs. Participants will take the results of the trend analysis to create an action plan and opportunities for System improvement. The course also discusses how to build a food safety program that includes a demonstrable Return On Investment.