Growing Your Business Safely

Congratulations on successfully opening your store, completing your build out, hiring staff, training, marketing, and developing social media to generate a loyal following of customers.  You may be wondering…What’s next?   How can you expand your bottom line and enhance revenue?   How can you expand your stores footprint to reach new audiences?   Naturally, you are thinking the next likely goal is to expand your product reach.   How better to accomplish this than distributing your products to local restaurants and markets to carry or feature your products. 

Before you call on the restaurants and regional retail outlets to distribute your products or begin researching new packaging, be sure you have the resources and infrastructure in place to meet this exciting opportunity.   Having a Food Safety Program in place for your existing business can help ensure you grow your business safely.    

While you may not have the resources of a large corporation, industry and academia have rallied together to support this artisan demand by creating  This website houses ALL the tools you need in one place!  In addition, an online training course, which contains the essential information you will need has been developed. This course allows you to go at your own pace, whenever convenient for you or jump around between relevant chapters and return to re-review at any time!   

The first step when you go to is to review the Growing Your Business Safely Checklist (See Below).   This Checklist details the top 15 topics to master.  Each topic contains links to access pertinent information, useful tools, education videos and templates to help you master that section.   A good jumping off point is to start at number 1 and work your way down the list.  In # 1, start by utilizing the self-audit templates and the food safety program checklist provided on the website to help you take a deeper look at your facility with food safety in mind.  This exercise will help you assess risks to your current product/business related to pathogens, allergens, and extraneous materials.  Once completed, you can identify which areas to focus your efforts on for further education and how to properly develop documentation systems.   Then go back to number 2 and visit each topic on the checklist where you can access related resources, educational videos, and templates.  As you progress through this process, know You are not alone!   The Website even has a “Phone an Expert” feature, where additional resources and support personnel are available to assist you.   They are just a click or phone call away so go to today to begin your journey safely. 

Growing Your Business Safely Checklist

  1. Self-Audit
    1. Lesson 1: Importance of Food Safety Excerpt
    2. Food Safety Program Checklist
    3. Self-Audit Templates
  2. Good Manufacturing Practices
    1. Lesson 4: GMPs Excerpt
    2. GMP Template
    3. Welcome Letter Template for Visitors
    4. Recordkeeping Template
  3. SSOPs - Sanitary Standard Operating Procedures
    1. Lesson 6: Sanitation Excerpt
    2. Lesson 8: Process Controls Excerpt
  4. Allergen Training
    1. Lesson 5: Allergens Excerpt
    2. Allergen Control Template
  5. Label Requirements
    1. Ice Cream & Frozen Desserts Labelling Manual
  6. Traceability Requirements, Receiving Logs Required Records
    1. Transportation Template
    2. Receiving Log Template Form            
  7. Vendor Approval Process & Logs (including local vendors)
    1. Lesson 7: Supplier Verification Excerpt
    2. Supplier Verification Template
    3. Supplier Questionnaire Template
  8. Recall Plan
    1. Mock Recall Policy
    2. Mock Recall Template
    3. Guide to FDA Inspections & Preparing for a Recall
    4. Crisis Preparedness Toolkit
    5. Recall Program Template
  9. Facility Design-Layout, Traffic Patterns, Air Patterns, and Pest Control
    1. Lesson 2: Food Safety Hazards Excerpt
    2. Dairy Facility Design Checklist
    3. Developing a Food Safety Plan
  10. Sanitary Design of Equipment
    1. Lesson 6: Sanitation Excerpt
  11. Hazard Analysis
    1. Lesson 2: Food Safety Hazards Excerpt
    2. Hazard Analysis Summary
  12. Critical Control Points
    1. Lesson 3: Food Safety Strategies Excerpt
    2. Critical Control Point Deviation
    3. Policy Deviation
  13. Pulling it all together – Your Food Safety Plan
    1. Lesson 10: Roadmap Excerpt
    2. Developing a Food Safety Plan
    3. Templates/Workshops
    4. Food Safety Plan Development Assistance
  14. Environmental Monitoring
    1. Lesson 9: Environmental Monitoring Excerpt
    2. Environmental Monitoring Handbook
    3. Environmental Monitoring Workshop
  15. Re-Audit/Gap Analysis
    1. Food Safety Program Checklist
    2. FDA's Food GMP Inspection Report
    3. SQF Institute's Guidance, Tip Sheets and Checklists
    4. Level 1 Audit

This resource center is a collaboration between the following industry and trade associations:

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