J&J Distributing has earned Safe Quality Food Level 2 certification under the Global Food Safety Initiative.

St. Paul, Minn.-based J&J received the certification Dec. 28, according to a company news release.

The certification covers fruit and vegetable processing, fresh produce wholesaling and distribution and ice drink and beverage processing.

To qualify for the certification, J&J was audited by a third-party inspector, who evaluated aspects of the company’s food safety program including personnel practices, plant maintenance and cleanliness and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points plans.

“Achieving SQF certification validates our food safety program and exemplifies our continued commitment to providing safe, high quality products to the marketplace,” Jim Hannigan, J&J’s president and chief executive officer, said in the release. “This is an achievement of which our employees can all be proud.”

Achieving SQF certification validates J&J’s food safety program, Hannigan said.

“This is not just an audit — it’s a lifestyle, a true culture change,” he said. “It provides validation to many national and international retailers and foodservice providers that a company has food safety programs in place and that those programs are followed.”