(Washington, D.C. – February 2, 2015) The International Dairy Foods Association is now accepting applications for the 11th annual Dairy Industry Safety Recognition Awards, a program that honors facilities for outstanding worker safety performance. Building on changes made to the application process last year, IDFA continues to request information on leading indicators about worker safety to monitor the actions or activities that companies have in place to prevent negative events or incidents, such as lost workday injuries or illnesses.
Most safety and health experts believe that monitoring both leading and lagging indicators is crucial to managing an effective safety and health management system. IDFA included a new section on leading indicators starting in 2013. By gathering this information, IDFA aims to enhance awareness and understanding of leading indicators and to encourage employers to adopt leading indicators in their worker safety programs.
Examples of leading indicators include:
- Number of inspections conducted;
- Number of safety and health hazards identified;
- Decreased time for hazard abatement;
- Increased employing training;
- Safety suggestions implemented; and
- Job hazard analyses completed.
“Dairy product manufacturers continue to demonstrate that providing a safe work environment for their production and transportation workers is a high priority,” said Emily Lyons, IDFA director of regulatory affairs and counsel. “We encourage all facilities to submit nominations for their processing and trucking operations so we can recognize and celebrate their successful efforts.
“In the coming year, IDFA hopes to incorporate an objective methodology that will allow us to evaluate both leading and lagging indicators, and recognize dairy companies for taking a proactive approach to preventing workplace incidents.” Lyons added.
For 2015, applicants will be judged on specific data required by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) on the facility's "Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses" report (OSHA Form 300A). Employers are required to post their OSHA 300A forms from February 1 through April 30 each year.
Processing facilities are judged in four product categories: natural and processed cheese; dry, condensed, and evaporated products; ice cream and frozen desserts; and fluid milk. Within each product category, there are awards for small, medium and large facilities that achieve the best overall safety performance rates based on the OSHA data.
Trucking operations will receive certificates for having no lost days and no cases involving job transfers or restrictions.
Award winners will be notified in the fall and featured in Dairy Foods magazine, which co-sponsors the safety awards program.
The 2015 entry form is available here, and there is no fee to enter. All entries must be submitted to IDFA no later than March 31, 2015.
For more information, contact Lyons at firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 220-3507.
# # #
The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), Washington, D.C, represents the nation's dairy manufacturing and marketing industries and their suppliers, with a membership of 550 companies within a $125-billion a year industry. IDFA is composed of three constituent organizations: the Milk Industry Foundation (MIF), the National Cheese Institute (NCI) and the International Ice Cream Association (IICA). IDFA's nearly 200 dairy processing members run nearly 600 plant operations, and range from large multi-national organizations to single-plant companies. Together they represent more than 85 percent of the milk, cultured products, cheese, ice cream and frozen desserts produced and marketed in the United States.