Madison, ME (PRWEB) April 09, 2014
Backyard Farms, the largest grower of year-round tomatoes in New England, has been recognized as the winner of the 13th annual Food Quality and Safety Award sponsored by DuPont Nutrition & Health and presented by Food Quality & Safety magazine. The prestigious honor recognizes a North American quality assurance department or program each year that has made significant improvements in food safety and quality. Backyard Farms will formally receive the award on April 9 at the 2014 Food Safety Summit in Baltimore, Maryland.
“At Backyard Farms, we bring the same dedicated attention to quality and safety to our tomato plants that our consumers would expect in their own backyard gardens,” said Mark Queenan, Director of Quality Assurance and Food Safety at Backyard Farms. “We have a tradition of ‘food quality first’ that is woven into the fabric of everything we do at Backyard Farms. From our management team to pickers and packers, we embrace and are committed to continuous evaluation and improvement in the areas of food safety and quality practices.”
Food safety and quality are keystones of the Backyard Farm organization. The company’s 42-acre greenhouse and pack houses are fully certified by the Produce Harmonized Good Agricultural Practices Initiative and Global Food Safety Initiative, today’s gold standard for food safety practices. Before receiving the Backyard Farm’s official stamp of approval, the company ensures that each hand-picked tomato passes a series of rigorous quality checks that monitor, measure, and analyze established parameters designed to meet and exceed USDA Tomato Standards.
The Food Quality and Safety Award is the latest example of Backyard Farms longstanding commitment to food safety. In the company’s first year of operation in 2007, Backyard Farms was the first farm in the state of Maine to be USDA GAP (Good Agricultural Practices) certified. In 2010, the company was the first farm in Maine and all of new England, as well as one of the first in the country, to be SQF (Safe Quality Foods) Level 3 certified. And in 2012, Backyard Farms was the first farm in Maine to be GAP Harmonized certified and is currently working towards Global GAP PSS certification.
About Backyard Farms:
Located in Madison, Maine, Backyard Farms grows fresh, ripened-on-the-vine tomatoes year-round. With 42 acres of state-of-art greenhouses, these passionate tomato gardeners each personally harvest their own rows of tomatoes, and when ready, are picked, packed, and shipped all within a day’s drive to your local market.