The American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) is now accepting applications for the 2016 Feed Facility of the Year awards program. Pet food facilities are now considered in the program. The program recognizes overall excellence in feed manufacturing operations, emphasizing safety, quality, regulatory compliance, operating efficiency and overall industry awards.

"Many of our members want to know how their operations, whether they're liquid feed facilities, pet food facilities, integrators, etc., compare to others in the business," said Gary Huddleston, AFIA manager of feed manufacturing safety and environmental affairs, in a press release. "AFIA, along with Feedstuffs, is excited to launch its new Feed Facility of the Year awards program, which gives companies the opportunity to access important [anonymous] benchmarking information and the chance of public industry recognition."

Huddleston said members will notice changes as the industry program is reintroduced, including a more diverse application system. The current initiative is a redesign of the AFIA/Feedstuffs annual Feed Mill of the Year program.

"Since the previous program [Feed Mill of the Year] was not considered an industry-wide benchmarking program, and AFIA prides itself on representing the total feed industry, we made certain changes to address this in our new program,” said Huddleston. “Feed Facility of the Year will be much more industry inclusive."

To keep benchmarking information relative, five award categories, with category-specific applications, are now considered:

  1. Commercial Dry Livestock Feed Facility
  2. Integrator Feed Facility
  3. Liquid Feed Facility
  4. Pet Food Facility
  5. Premix Manufacturing Facility

AFIA will recognize winners in each of the five categories and the overall Feed Facility of the Year winner at the 2017 International Production & Processing Expo.

Applications are due by September 30. A $35 fee must be paid per application, per facility.

AFIA and Feedstuffs chose personnel at Kent Nutrition Group’s (KNG) manufacturing plant in Rockford, Ill., to receive their 2015 Feed Mill of the Year award.