Quality Chekd Dairies Inc., a Lisle, Ill.-based member-owned organization of independent dairy processors, said it named three outstanding dairy processors as finalists for the Quality Chekd Irving B. Weber Award and eight finalists for the Quality Chekd Production Excellence Award.

The Irving B. Weber Award, which Quality Chekd developed and modeled after the Malcolm Baldrige Award, represents the highest honor for overall quality throughout the Quality Chekd organization. Finalists are judged based on effective implementation of quality focus in all areas, Quality Chekd said, from processes and products to customer service and satisfaction at a single plant location. The following dairy processors have been named finalists for the Weber Award:

  • Alqueria Dairy, Santa Marta, Colombia
  • Umpqua Dairy Products, Roseburg, Ore.
  • United Dairy, Inc., Charleston, W.V.

Although the finalist processors operate in very different regions, all have one thing in common: a demonstrated commitment to quality excellence in the categories of leadership, culture, production, sustainability and business ethics, Quality Chekd said.

The organization will present the Weber Award at the 2017 QCS Leadership Conference in November at the Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace at Disney Springs.

In addition, the three Weber Award finalists and five other dairy processors are finalists for the Production Excellence Award, which recognizes outstanding processors based on selection criteria that includes a plant audit, as well as evaluation of all plant processes and systems for assuring product quality evaluation results. The following processors are finalists for the Production Excellence Award:

  • Alqueria Dairy: Fluid milk category
  • Belfonte Ice Cream and Dairy Foods, Kansas City, Mo.: ice cream category
  • Hiland Dairy Foods Co., Springfield, Mo.: ice cream category
  • Lochmead Dairy, Junction City, Ore.: fluid milk category
  • Prairie Farms Dairy, Quincy, Ill.: cultured dairy category
  • Sunshine Dairy Foods, Portland, Ore.: cultured dairy category
  • Umpqua Dairy: cultured dairy products category, ice cream category
  • United Dairy Inc.: fluid milk category