The small Waikato dairy co-operative, Tatua, has become the first New Zealand company to achieve a new international food safety standard.
For the past year, Tatua Co-operative Dairy Company has been working with the New Zealand agency AsureQuality to gain Food Safety System Certification 22000.
The certification covers the manufacture and supply of the wide range of dairy and non-dairy products that Tatua provides, including protein products, creams, sauces, soft cheeses and dessert products.
Tatua operations manager Brendan Greaney says it builds on earlier standards such as ISO 9001 and is the company's response to the ever-increasing expectations of consumers around food safety.
He believes it is a trend that will continue. "We've now met the standards but we fully expect the bar to continue to be raised and we will have to meet this requirement to continuously improve, frankly, in everything we do," Mr Greaney says.