1. Why is NSF doing this?
NSF identified that there was no comprehensive food safety award program in Canada for Canadian food and beverage companies. At the same time, NSF recognized that there are many food and beverage companies and individuals in Canada who work tirelessly every day to provide their customers with safe food. There are many food safety success stories in Canada and we wanted to develop a mechanism to share and celebrate those successes.
2. Can submissions be sent in either French or English?
We accept submissions from across Canada in English only.
3. Where can I find the online application?
Application templates can be found on the NSF website and can be submitted beginning September 1 until October 30, 2016.
4. Once I start the on-line application process, can I stop and continue at a later date?
Yes. There’s a ‘save’ feature on the on-line application process that allows you or others to continue on at a later time.
5. Where can I find the criteria for each award category?
The criteria are found on the NSF website.
In general the criteria are as follows:
Overall recency of the information/evidence
Quantity of evidence: sufficient to assess?
Quality of evidence: anecdotal vs. documented
Impact of activities on achieving food safety outcomes
6. Can I see the list of last year’s winners?
Yes the winners are shown here.
7. Can I mail or courier in supporting materials and evidence?
No. All information must be provided through the on-line nomination process. The process allows you to upload electronic support documentation.
8. Can I nominate myself or my own company?
Yes. Self nominations are acceptable.
9. Is there an application or nomination fee?
No, there is no application or nomination fee.
10. Can we apply for more than one award category at a time and if we win, how long do we have to wait before applying again?
Yes, you can apply for as multiple award categories provided you meet the eligibility criteria. Winners of previous award categories must wait five years before re-applying for that same award category.
11. How long is the submission period?
Submissions will be accepted from September 1 to October 30, 2016.
12. When will successful submissions be notified?
The top two nominees from each category will be contacted by NSF and their success publicized by NSF. Each will undergo an additional assessment to verify the submitted information and evidence. Based on the assessment results, a winner and runner up will be selected.
13. When will the winners be announced?
The top two submissions from each category will be invited to attend the award ceremony to be held February, 2017 where NSF will announce the winner.
14. What do I get if I win?
Each winner will receive a NSF Food Safety Recognition Award trophy with the company name or individual’s name engraved on it. As well, you or your organization will be part of a NSF-issued news release and be able to announce your winning submission in company promotional materials. Also, the award winners will appear on the NSF “Award Winners” page.
15. Are winners guaranteed in each category?
NSF reserves the right to not select a winner for each category if submissions do not meet all of the judging criteria.
16. Are there limitations to the awards?
The only limit is geography as the awards are open to companies with a Canadian facility.
17. We’re a manufacturer of food contact (primary) packaging materials. Are we eligible for the awards?
Yes. Eligible companies include: Food/beverage manufacturers, Packaging converters and manufacturers, Food producers (on-farm), Food re-packers, Food distributors, Food retailers and Food service. With the Leadership Award, companies in the allied trades sector are also eligible. Note: There is also a specific award category for allied trades.
18. We are a U.S. based corporation with a plant in Canada. Is our Canadian plant eligible for Food Safety Excellence Award?
Yes – since the Food Safety Excellence Award is awarded to either a company or a specific facility, a facility located in Canada is eligible regardless of where its head office is located.
19. My company provides fabrication services to the food industry – specifically installation of custom-designed work (including platforms, catwalks, guardrails, etc.). Are we eligible for any of the awards?
Yes. As an allied trade company supporting the food industry, you are eligible for both the Food Safety Leadership Award and the Allied Trades Food Safety Award. Other examples of allied trades include: sanitation services, pest control, contractors, millwrights, consultants, etc.).
20. How is NSF ensuring the quality and credibility of these awards?
NSF has gone through an extensive review process and a pilot of the secure online application process. As well, we have assembled a group of food industry leaders to act as judges. Judges will recuse themselves if their involvement is deemed a conflict of interest.
For applicants: Members of the selection committee are listed below. Please notify Scott Arnald if you believe a conflict of interest exists that could affect the assessment of your application.
21. Who are the selection committee members for the NSF Food Safety Recognition Awards?
Sharon K.K. Beals, Vice President, Food Safety & Quality, Maple Leaf Consumer Foods
Carmine (Carmen) DeRenzis, Director, Quality Assurance & Food Safety, Canada Bread Company Limited
Tom Graham, Director, Domestic Inspection Division/National FSEP-HACCP Manager, Canadian Food Inspection Agency
John Kukoly, BRC Global Standards
Don Lacey, Private Consultant
Dr. Trevor Smith, Quality Integration Solutions
Keith Warriner, Professor, University of Guelph, Department of Food Science
22. How can I be assured that my submission information isn’t used beyond my application?
All those involved with the awards recognition program, both NSF staff and external judges, have signed confidentiality agreements.
23. How long will award applications be kept?
All applications will be destroyed after the award ceremony held in February, 2017.
24. Who do I contact if I have more questions?
For all questions related to the awards email Scott Arnald or call 519-821-1246 ext. 6402.
25. We are uncomfortable uploading documents containing personal information for example people’s names and confidential information such as customer and supplier names. We do have examples of templates used to create these documents. Are these acceptable?
Our selection committee members have signed confidentiality agreements in order to protect this sort of information. You are welcome to submit ‘sanitized’ versions of documents and records however relying too heavily on non-original documents could skew the scoring of your submission. Please note that the finalists from each award category will be put through a desk audit to verify the accuracy of the submission. At that point, NSF will need to look at the original records.