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Dairy Facts 2016

Call for Entries: 2014 Dairy Industry Safety Awards

Feb 19, 2014

Contact: Marti Pupillo
(202) 220-3535

IDFA Continues to Build Awareness of Leading Indicators

(Washington, D.C. – February 19, 2014) The International Dairy Foods Association is now accepting applications for the 10th 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 will continue 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, explained Clay Detlefsen, IDFA vice president of regulatory affairs. IDFA added a new section to the application in 2013 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.

“Now in its 10th year, the safety awards program continues to demonstrate the dairy manufacturing industry’s commitment to worker safety in all areas of production and transportation,” Detlefsen said. “Looking ahead, we hope to incorporate an objective methodology that will allow us to use both leading and lagging indicators, because leading indicators will provide valuable performance feedback prior to an incident occurring.”

For 2014, 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 will be 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 this fall and featured in Dairy Foods magazine, which co-sponsors the safety awards program.

The 2014 entry form is available here, and there is no fee to enter. All entries must be submitted to IDFA no later than March 31, 2014.

For more information, contact Detlefsen at or (202) 220-3554.

# # #

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.

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