Herbruck’s was one of the first American egg producers to implement the Food Marketing Institute’s comprehensive Safe Quality Food (SQF) program, which covers all parts of the food supply chain. SQF standards for eggs encompass:
In 2010, Herbruck’s attained SQF 2000 Level 3, “a comprehensive implementation of food safety and quality management systems development.” The organization was one of the first American egg producers to have reached this level. National Sanitation Foundation auditors verify our compliance to the SQF standards.
We are also involved in developing the SQF 1000 standards. When this program is introduced, Herbruck’s intends to be one of the first to achieve certification. This is one demonstration of the culture of quality we foster throughout the company.
Safe food begins with healthy birds, premium genetics and exceptional animal care — but it doesn’t end there. Ensuring the safety and freshness of the eggs we supply encompasses everything we do.
In our processing plants, which handle the eggs from the time they arrive from the henhouses to the moment they’re loaded onto our refrigerated trucks, Herbruck’s continues to push the boundaries in developing best practices for food safety.
Our plant interiors are designed to make it easy to sanitize processing equipment and wash walls and floors daily – all while protecting our computer equipment.
Herbruck’s pioneered the use of stainless steel graders, breakers and other processing equipment to ensure food safety.
Technology rules in our processing facilities. Each egg is quality-checked by ultrasonic wave, weighed and sorted by computer, transported by conveyor and monitored throughout its journey by computerized control systems of our own design. In fact, often the first human to actually touch a Herbruck’s egg is a consumer in the grocery store.
To protect our facilities and their contents from harm, we use advanced security systems, including card access and camera surveillance.
Liquid egg innovations
Herbruck’s created an advanced in-line egg breaking facility that operates at a rate of 288,000 eggs per hour. The resulting liquid eggs are filtered and chilled according to exacting standards.
USDA onsite monitoring
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has staff on site at all Herbruck’s processing plants to monitor processes and certify our products.
FDA Egg Safety Final Rule
Herbruck’s was an early adopter of food safety precautions and procedures. Nearly 10 years before the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) issued its Egg Safety Final Rule in 2010, we began adopting its standards. These include persistent monitoring for the salmonella bacteria and refrigeration within a specific period.
Safe, sanitary processes
Herbruck’s eggs are quickly gathered, washed, sanitized, packaged, and refrigerated. They are then shipped in refrigerated trucks, at a temperature below 45 degrees F, to maintain freshness. We inspect all egg-gathering belts and equipment daily, and sanitize equipment every night.
Eggs are closely monitored and treated with care throughout our processing areas. All conditions surrounding the egg – wash and rinse water temperatures, conveyor speed, etc. – are controlled by computer. If any condition goes out of tolerance, alarms sound so the situation can be corrected.
Sponsored by the FDA, HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) is a systematic, preventive approach to food safety. Herbruck’s was an industry pioneer in adopting the HACCP principles for our processing plants and developing computerized technology to help monitor critical control points.
Using barcode technology, Herbruck’s can fully trace its products from the farm to the store shelf. Our system traces eggs to the time and place of delivery by case, cart, or pallet.
At the carton level, packages are labeled with sell-by and best-by dates for the customer, along with plant number and run code.
Excellence in processing requires a well-trained staff and a sophisticated training program. Our quality assurance staff participate in 24 hours of training per year. More importantly, our entire processing staff goes through a continuous training process that is constantly being updated. The training program covers three key facets of safe food delivery: food security, food safety, and biosecurity.