Food Safety & Quality


Our Commitment

Good food produced the right way is what we do best. We’re helping feed families around the world with safe, affordable, nutritionally important protein that people can trust for its quality and love for its flavor.


At Smithfield, food safety and quality are more than a set of standards to meet. They are ingrained in our culture and touch every Smithfield employee – from our farms to our corporate offices. We are proud of our food safety policies, procedures and performance. To learn more, view our food safety and quality video.


Our teams are always on the lookout for ways to improve our food safety and quality processes. Within our facilities, our food safety and quality leaders have the authority to make improvements and take countermeasures above and beyond our standards to correct any issues. When improvements are identified and implemented, they are evaluated by the Smithfield team, shared across all Smithfield facilities and incorporated into our standard operating policies when appropriate.

Our Approach

We are focused on producing safe, wholesome products for our customers and consumers, operating under strict programs and policies that ensure food safety and quality in every step of our value chain. We also collaborate with the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and industry organizations on projects aimed at improving food safety and increasing consumer protection.


In 2021, we combined our food safety and quality assurance departments for our fresh and packaged meat operations to achieve a standardized, comprehensive approach that underscores our food safety culture and commitment to producing high-quality, safe food for our customers around the world.

Our programs and policies ensure food safety and quality in every step of our value chain.

Policies and Statements

Regulations and Audits

Food safety & quality are among the biggest areas of risk for food producers, with serious potential consequences to the health and well-being of customers and their families.

We take pride in implementing robust food safety policies, procedures and performance that are designed to monitor and mitigate these risks.

Our industry performance is supported by our utilization of the industry gold standard Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), of which 100% of our applicable facilities are compliant. In addition, we are subject to audits by Safe Quality Food (SQF), the British Retail Consortium (BRC) Global Standard, the International Food Standard (ISF) and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 22000. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reviews safety and quality procedures at our processing facilities daily, as do our internal audit teams.

All our daily food safety & quality practices are prescribed by more than 40 internal policies. Our programs are built on the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) management framework. Our quality assurance plan utilizes the HACCP model as a baseline to manage key quality control points. Each plan is a living document that we update regularly in response to our understanding of best practices, industry innovations and our commitment to relentless improvement. In addition, we continuously monitor USDA safety and quality regulations, and our inhouse labs lead in the implementation of any new test requirements.

We rely on our suppliers to provide high-quality ingredients that meet or exceed our customer and consumer expectations and that comply with GFSI and HACCP requirements. Our Supplier Code of Conduct applies to vendors that supply raw meat materials, nonmeat ingredients or any product packaging or casing. Suppliers must undergo annual GFSI certification or an appropriate third-party food safety and quality audit as well as a third-party animal handling audit, including a transportation audit.

The aim of our food safety & quality program is zero incidents requiring a product recall.

Industry Certifications and Verifications

Brand Reputation Compliance Global Standards (BRGCS) The BRGCS standard is an international food safety management system and a recognized scheme of Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI). It lists requirements for food processors, including Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP), internal audits, supplier approval, traceability and more.
Common Swine Industry Audit (CSIA) The CSIA was created in 2014 as a common audit platform for pork producers, packers and processors in the United States. Audit tools build on the existing Pork Quality Assurance® Plus (PQA Plus®) program.
Food Safety System Certification (FSSC) 22000 The FSSC 22000 standard is a recognized GFSI scheme used to control safety risks. Certification provides confidence to customers and consumers that a rigorous food safety system is in place.
GLOBALG.A.P. The GlobalG.A.P. certification is highly regarded as a reliable standard for demonstrating on-farm food safety and sustainability
GSFI The GFSI was established to ensure confidence in the delivery of safer food to consumers while continuing to improve food safety throughout the supply chain. These global standards address food, packaging, packaging materials, storage and distribution for primary producers, manufacturers and distributors.
HACCP The HACCP is a management system in which food safety is addressed through the analysis and control of biological, chemical and physical hazards from raw material production, procurement and handling to manufacturing, distribution and consumption of the finished product.
International Featured Standard (IFS) Food Standard The IFS Food Standard is a standard used to audit retailer- and wholesaler-branded food products and applies at all stages of food processing.
International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001 ISO 14001 is the international standard that specifies requirements for an effective environmental management system (EMS). It provides a framework that an organization can follow, rather than establishing environmental performance requirements.
ISO 22000 The ISO 22000 standard demonstrates a company has a food safety management system in place and is tailored to apply to food safety.
National Pork Board's (NPB) PQA® Plus Program PQA® Plus is an educational program representing the U.S. industry’s commitment to continuous improvement of production practices. It addresses food safety, animal well-being, environmental stewardship, worker safety, public health and community. Farms are assessed every three years to ensure they meet PQA® Plus Site Status criteria.
NPB Transport Quality Assurance® (TQA®) Plus Program TQA® is a framework that helps transporters, producers and handlers in the United States understand how to handle, move and transport pigs and the potential impacts of those actions on pig well-being and pork quality.
North American Meat Institute's (NAMI's) Recommended Animal Handling Guidelines and Audit Guide The NAMI guidelines, which were revised in early 2017, were first developed by Colorado State University’s Dr. Temple Grandin, who has provided Smithfield with her animal welfare expertise for many years. All slaughter facilities are audited, at minimum, once per shift using these guidelines by auditors who have been trained according to the standards of the Professional Animal Auditor Certification Association (PAACO).
PAACO PAACO’s mission is to promote animal welfare in the United States through auditor training and audit certification.
Safe Quality Food (SQF) SQF is a recognized GFSI food safety management certification scheme with a focus on control of food safety risks.
U.S. Department of Agricutlture's (USDA's) Process Verified Program (PVP) The PVP is a third-party verification service designed to provide agricultural suppliers with labeling and marketing tools that assure customers of the consistent quality of the products they purchase.


Food safety expenditure
US training hours for food safety and quality
Applicable facilities GFSI certified


No incidents requiring a recall.
Did Not Achieve
Maintain GFSI certification at all applicable facilities.
Maintain a robust food safety and quality employee training program.

Dive into the Report

Animal Care

We maintain a steadfast commitment to the safety, health and comfort of our animals. We pioneer and follow industry best practices to prevent animal disease, ensure a biosecure environment for our animals and provide safe, comfortable housing through every stage of our animals’ lives.

Health & Wellness

“Good” doesn’t stop with our products. It’s in everything we do. From simpler nutrition and ingredient labels on our packaging to harvesting lifesaving pharmaceuticals for use in medical applications, we’re not just producing good food — we’re making good progress toward a healthier world.

Worker Health & Safety

From industry-leading safety practices and professional development opportunities to competitive benefits and compensation, Smithfield offers a culture and support systems that ensure employee well-being at work and at home, and we strive to lead our industry in occupational safety and health.

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