Rich and Heather Draper of The Ice Cream Club Inc., Boynton Beach, Fla., received the International Dairy Foods Association’s (IDFA) 2019 Food Safety Leadership Award during IDFA’s Dairy Forum. Dairy Forum was held Jan. 20-23 in Orlando, Fla.

The award, now in its third year, honors an individual, group or organization for demonstrating outstanding leadership directed at enhancing food safety within the dairy products industry, Washington, D.C.-based IDFA said. Rich Draper is the CEO and Heather Draper is director of the company.

“Rich and Heather were vital contributors to IDFA’s ice cream food safety task force, which developed a set of resources for the ice cream industry in 2016,” said John Allan, IDFA’s vice president of regulatory affairs and international standards. “Most recently, they’re guiding IDFA’s efforts to develop a website that will provide food safety guidance and resources for small-scale and artisan ice cream producers. They’ve also shared their time and talents in an industry effort to educate artisan cheesemakers on food safety practices.”

The Drapers understand that a culture of food safety starts at the top, IDFA noted, and they have worked tirelessly within The Ice Cream Club to define and implement strong food safety practices and ensure that all employees recognize the importance of food safety to the company and its customers.

“It is obvious to those of us who work with them across the dairy industry that they are shining examples of what IDFA’s Food Safety Leadership Award seeks to recognize and encourage,” Allan said.

The previous recipients of the award are the Cornell University Dairy Foods Extension team (2017) and Brian Kraus, director of food safety and regulatory compliance, Wells Enterprises Inc. (2018). IDFA said it would issue a call for nominations for the 2020 Food Safety Leadership Award this summer.