BALTIMORE — Long-term vision and a commitment to innovation are two factors that helped Taylor Farms earn the 12th annual Food Quality Award presented at the Food Safety Summit on May 1.
Mark Borman, president of the Salinas, Calif.-based company, said employees at all levels have a commitment to providing safe salads and other fresh produce products. He said food safety requires a decision by top management initially, but is unattainable unless staff at all levels make crucial decisions every day.
“It’s the 2 a.m. decision by a line supervisor to do the right thing that makes the program work,” Borman said when he accepted the award.
Quality control and food safety projects can be difficult to sell to some corporate leaders because it is hard to nail down the return on investment for such efforts, Borman said. But that has not been the case at Taylor Farms. Borman said the company’s decision to find the right wash water technology is a case in point.
“I don’t think we’ve found the (return on investment) on that in the short term,” Borman said. “But sometimes economic decisions need to be looked at for the long term, and that’s what we did.”
Jason Kawata, director of quality control for Taylor Farms, said he believes the company’s commitment to innovation – such as its decision to partner with SmartWash – is the main reason it earned the Food Quality Award.
“Mark and Bruce Taylor have always looked for new and better ways to do things,” Kawata said after the award ceremony. “That inspires the rest of us to continue to work on new ideas."
Food Quality Magazine sponsors the award.