SQF code

The Safe Quality Food Institute’s (SQFI) SQF Code, edition 8 has been updated and redesigned in 2017 for use by all sectors of the food industry from primary production to storage and distribution and now includes a food safety code for retailers. It replaces the SQF Code, edition 7.
The SQF Code is a site specific, process and product certification standard with an emphasis on the systematic application of CODEX Alimentarius Commission HACCP principles and guidelines for control of food safety and food quality hazards.
Certification to the SQF Code supports industry-or company- branded product and offers benefits to certified sites and their customers. The implementation of an SQF System addresses a buyer’s food safety and quality requirements and provides the solution for businesses supplying local and global food markets.  Products produced and manufactured under SQF Code certification retain a high degree of acceptance in global markets.
First developed in Australia in 1994, the SQF program has been owned and managed by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) since 2003, and was first recognized in 2004 by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI)* as a standard that meets its benchmark requirements.
Certification of a site’s SQF System by a Safe Quality Food Institute licensed certification body is not a statement of guarantee of the safety of the site’s product, or that it meets all food safety regulations at all times. However, it is an assurance that the site’s food safety plans have been implemented in accordance with the CODEX HACCP method as well as applicable regulatory requirements and that the System has been verified and determined effective to manage food safety. Further, it is a statement of the site’s commitment to
  • Produce safe, quality food,
  • Comply with the requirements of the SQF Code, and
  • Comply with applicable food legislation.
SQF Code, edition 8 is applicable to all certification and surveillance audits conducted after January 2, 2018. Those sites with an existing SQF certification will be required to upgrade their Systems to meet the requirements outlined in edition 8 by that date.
The SQF Code, edition 8 covers seven sections:
1. Food Safety Code for Manufacturing
The following apply to this category:
  • Fresh Produce and Nuts Pack-house Operations
  • Slaughterhouse, Boning and Butchery Operations
  • Processing of Manufactured Meats and Poultry
  • Seafood, Dairy Food, and Apiculture and Honey processing
  • Egg, Bakery & Snack Food, and Fruit, Vegetable, and Nut Processing, and Fruit Juices
  • Canning, UHT, and Aseptic Operations
  • Ice, Drink, and Beverage Processing
  • Confectionery Manufacturing
  • Preserved Foods Manufacture
  • Oils, Fats, and the Manufacture of Oil or Fat-based spreads
  • Processing of Cereal Grains
  • Repackaging of products not manufactured on site
  • Manufacturer of Dietary Supplements, Pet Food, Animal Feed, and Food Processing Aides
2. SQF Food Safety Code for Manufacturing of Food Packaging
The following apply to this category:
  • Manufacture of Food Packaging
3. SQF Food Safety Code for Storage Distribution
The following apply to this category:
  • Food Storage and Distribution
4. SQF Food Safety Fundamentals
The following apply to this category:
  • Growing and Production of Fresh Produce and Nuts
  • Processing of Manufacturing Meats and Poultry
  • Harvest and Intensive Farming of Seafood Processing
  • Dairy food, Egg, Bakery and Snack Food Processing
  • Apiculture and Honey Processing
  • Fruit, Vegetable and Nut Processing, and Fruit Juices
  • Canning, UHT and Aseptic Operations
  • Ice, Drink and Beverage Processing
  • Confectionery Manufacture
  • Preserved Foods Manufacture
  • Food Ingredient Manufacture
  • Recipe Meals Manufacture
  • Oils, Fats, and the Manufacture of oil or fat-based spreads
  • Processing of cereal grains
  • Repacking of Products not manufactured on site.
  • Food Storage and Distribution
  • Manufacture of Food Packaging
  • Manufacture of Dietary Supplements
  • Manufacture of Food Processing Aids
5. SQF Food Safety Code for Primary Production
The following apply to this category:
  • Production, Capture, and Harvesting of Livestock and Game Animals
  • Growing and Harvesting of Sprouted Seeds Crops for Human Consumption
  • Growing and Production of Fresh Produce and Nuts
  • Extensive Broad Acre Agricultural Operations
  • Harvest and Intensive Farming of Seafood
6. Food Safety Code for Food Retail
The following apply to this category:
  • Food retailing
7. SQF Quality Code
The following apply to this category:
  • Production, Capture and Harvesting of Livestock and Game Animals
  • Growing and Production of Fresh Produce and Nuts
  • Extensive Broad Acre Agriculture Operations
  • Harvest and Intensive Farming of Seafood
  • Fresh Produce and Nuts Pack-house Operations
  • Slaughterhouse, Boning and Butchery Operations
  • Processing of Manufactured Meats and Poultry
Seafood, Dairy, Apiculture and Honey Processing, Egg, Bakery and Snack Processing.