THE Coega Dairy was awarded the ISO 22000 Food Safety System Certification (FSSC), becoming the first dairy in the country to receive the accolade.
"To be the first South African dairy to receive the sought-after international ISO 22000 FSSC certification is an exceptional accolade for us," chief executive Hennie Kleynhans said.
"Before certification we completed an audit for ISO 22000 HACPP accreditation [was carried out], which required a paper trail and quality checks from the farmer to the household."
Kleynhans said the ISO 22000 FSSC was the first international standard for implementation of a certified food safety management system and was devised after it was found that a single standard with global recognition was needed.
"It was not easy to receive this certification.
"We embarked on the idea after we started exporting and found that each country had different requirements in terms of food safety," he said.
Kleynhans said the dairy had modern and sophisticated laboratories and a strict monitoring process.
"We test and analyse the milk while it is still on the farm. We then test it again after it is transported in the tankers and we also sample more than 100000 finished samples per month. This is a high volume but we analyse each sample in detail," he said.