Southover, renowned for its tradition of quality production since it started trading back in 1989, appointed Shane Beckford as quality manager three years ago to implement and oversee a quality management system for the whole company.
Gaining EFSIS accreditation does not mean that the work is all done, however, as Beckford says: "We don't see this as the end. We have a moral obligation to our clients to maintain our high quality standards. Gaining EFSIS accreditation is a foundation which we will build upon to continue to develop the business."
A professional trainer, Beckford intends to gain accreditation from the British Retail Consortium (BRC) by the end of 2008. This global standard is regarded as the benchmark for best practice in the food industry for suppliers and manufacturers alike.
Plans are also afoot to become a Centre of Excellence, offering training in Health & Safety and HACCP both internally and also externally to fellow businesses in Kent, Sussex and the South West.
Beckford is also spearheading the move to make Southover a Green Supplier in accordance with ISO 14001, the Environmental Management System.