The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA) said it is accepting applications for the Dairy Industry Safety Recognition Awards. Now in its 18th year, the award program honors facilities and trucking operations for outstanding worker-safety performance. Among numerous award criteria, IDFA refers to both leading and lagging indicators recommended by health and safety experts as essential factors within a worker safety program.

Examples of leading indicators, IDFA said, include:

  • Number of inspections conducted.
  • Number of safety and health hazards identified.
  • Decreased time for hazard abatement.
  • Increased employing training.
  • Safety suggestions implemented.
  • Job hazard analyses completed.

“The Dairy Industry Safety Recognition Awards spotlight dairy businesses that have gone above and beyond in proactive workplace safety programs to prevent illness and injuries,” said Danielle Quist, IDFA’s vice president of regulatory affairs and counsel. “We look forward to recognizing the innovative practices that dairy companies have put in place or progressed over the past year.”

Dairy processing and trucking operations will be judged on occupational injury and illness performance rates, which are recorded in each operation’s “Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses” report (Occupational Safety and Health Administration Form 300A). Companies are required to post their OSHA 300A forms from Feb. 1 through April 30 following the year covered by the form. Applicants will also provide a written essay explaining the components of their safety and health programs, Washington, D.C.-based IDFA said.

To be eligible for an award, a processing facility or transportation operation must implement an effective and innovative health and safety program and have illness and injury rates below industry averages reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“Workplace safety is not just a priority for dairy companies; it is at the heart of each business and essential to productivity,” Quist said. “These safety awards are just one way for companies to demonstrate their successes and unique approaches to maintaining a culture of safety throughout the company. Safety achievements are huge indicator of success and through this awards process, we hope to encourage all dairy facilities to continuously approach safety as a priority and engage their employees in the process.”

Award winners will be notified this summer and featured in Dairy Foods magazine, which co-sponsors the safety awards program. Companies must be an IDFA member to enter. The 2021 award program rules, regulations and application form are available here, and there is no fee to enter, IDFA said. All entries must be submitted to IDFA no later than April 30, 2021.

For more information, contact Quist at or 202-220-3508.