East London IDZ-based Sundale Free Range Dairy has achieved an internationally recognised food safety management certification.
Public relations consultant for the dairy Lynette Howe was excited about the news for the Eastern Cape region.
“Sundale is one of only a handful of dairies in South Africa to have achieved this world-class standard,” she said.
Sundale chief executive Pierre van Rensburg said the FSSC 22000 certification meant that the dairy met the requirements of several global retailers and major branded food companies under an internationally recognised food management system. “It also provides our consumers with peace of mind in a market that is increasingly concerned about food safety.”
Howe said the certification, which is recognised by the Global Food Safety Initiative, was developed to guarantee food safety systems for organisations in the food chain that process or manufacture animal products, additives, bio-cultures and food packaging material.
“It integrates into other quality management systems such as ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 and is an integral part of any food manufacturing organisation’s ability to improve quality and ensure safety,” she said.
“The certification is testament to the standards at Sundale.
“The application process is particularly thorough and every aspect of the business needs to meet the strict quality specifications in order to achieve the coveted stamp of approval.
“Since Pierre van Rensburg and his wife Sharna took over the reins at Sundale Free Range Dairy, they have forged ahead to achieve their shared vision to provide a quality dairy to local markets and to endeavour to move towards greener business practices.
“Sundale is one of few dairies to recycle all their water and they have received recognition for being the greenest dairy in the province.”
Van Rensburg added: “We continually strive to improve efficiencies and reduce our impact on the environment whilst we maintain stringent quality standards.”
Sundale food technologist Japie Steyl said: “Achieving recognition from a global initiative is significant to us and reinforces our claims of commitment to quality.
“Food safety, particularly in the dairy sector, is critical. Unpasteurised or raw milk can carry the TB virus and in South Africa, where maas is a staple food, it is absolutely crucial that we take every precaution to protect consumers of dairy products from possible contamination.”
Sundale, which produces milk, yoghurts, maas, cheese, cream, dairy blends and butter, already has export certification and has expanded into national markets through supplier chains like Checkers and Woolworths.