“Minimizing the incidence of foodborne illnesses resulting from crop contamination is a concern for all almond growers. Bacteria that cause foodborne illnesses, such as salmonella and E. coli, can be found in animal and human feces. The potential for contamination of almonds with these organisms increases during harvest, when the nuts are dropped to the ground.”
– ANR Publication 8126, University of California
Prevention of Contamination
We take great care to prevent the introduction of any contaminants to the product we receive, and to prevent potential cross contamination of processing lots from product co-mingling. Much like GAP’s for the grower, our GMP’s address documentation, employee training, water quality, plant sanitation, pest control and employee hygiene. Additional considerations for processors include HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) and Product Recall Programs.
Product Recall Programs
As a first processor, the huller/sheller is very closely identified with the harvest operations, and the key driver for us in Product Recall is our Traceability Program. This gives us not only the ability to track food items through the chain of custody to its field of origin at the farm, but we also track every step of processing once it arrives at our facility. This includes dates and locations of stockpiles, fumigation treatments, weather, storage periods, lot processing information, moisture conditions, and finally, delivery to the handler.
Superior’s GMP program is crucial to protecting the quality of the crop produced under the grower’s GAP procedures. Superior Almond Hulling participates in an annual unannounced third party audit of food safety practices, receiving “Superior” ratings each year.