ARLINGTON, VA — April 21, 2008 — The Safe Quality Food Institute (SQFI) has entered into a cooperative partnership with Mexico Calidad Suprema (MCS), a nonprofit association of food producers and packers in Mexico.

     The Safe Quality Food program is managed by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI). SQF is a leading, global food safety and quality certification program and management system, designed to meet the needs of buyers and suppliers worldwide.

     “Working together, we can use our resources to help ensure that Mexican suppliers meet the requirements of both SQF and MCS,” said Tim Hammonds, FMI president and CEO. “This will open new markets for trade between our countries and provide American consumers an extra measure of confidence that Mexican producers observe the highest food safety standards.”   

     In cooperation with the Mexican government, MCS works to develop and strengthen agricultural competitiveness through information, education, training, certification, promotion and the use of the Mexico Supreme Quality Official Trademark. The Mexican trademark is a distinctive seal owned by the nation’s government, which ensures the quality of Mexican products. The seal also certifies agricultural products meet official food safety standards to benefit producers, packers, distributors and consumers.

     The SQF program provides independent third-party certification that a supplier’s food safety and quality management system conforms to international standards and food safety regulations. This enables suppliers to assure their customers that food has been produced, processed, prepared and handled according to the highest possible standards, at all levels of the supply chain. SQF is the only certification system recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative for all food products in the supply chain from primary production to food manufacturing and distribution.