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America’s Safest Companies 2016: Leprino Foods Company

America’s Safest Companies 2016: Leprino Foods Company

The 10 companies on the 2016 list of America's Safest Companies represent a broad array of industries. These companies operate in the construction, manufacturing, oil and gas, food, agriculture and utility industry sectors.

Safety is important from the top down at Leprino Foods Company.

Leprino's Safety Vision and Mission program stresses employee engagement and personal accountability for its 4,200 workers. In its 65-year history, the company never has had an occupational fatality and has had above-average safety results, placing within the top quartile for the food industry for the past 20 years.

“These plants employ fathers, mothers, sons, daughters and extended families that form a unique working community," said John Forrester, corporate safety manager. “Safety is part of the fabric of what brings all these community elements together."

[Download the complete set of articles about America's Safest Companies 2016]

Over the past three years, the company has shifted its thinking from an emphasis on lagging indicators to employee engagement and safety process quality.

Leprino uses a variety of avenues to communicate safety tips. Top company leaders kick-off each year with a message to all employees about the importance of safety.

Whether it is during a leadership meeting, the quarterly company newsletter or the weekly safety e-newsletter, the company emphasizes key safety issues to its employees.

In addition, weekly training topics covering non-compliance-related subjects such as safety off-the-job, wellness, safe work techniques, behavior-based safety, safe driving and pedestrian safety in work environments is covered. All Leprino sites conduct ergonomics training and maintain ergonomic improvement projects, and all significant safety incidents and rule violations are reviewed at the executive level.

To top it off, Leprino has an annual companywide “World's Best Safety Award" which one of its nine plants can earn by meeting the following criteria:

  1. Must meet injury target goals and being in the top quartile.
  2. Must provide incentives for all tied to actions that improve safety.
  3. Must have active ongoing processes to reduce ergonomic and fall hazards.
  4. Must have at least one best practice developed and shared with other locations.
  5. Must keep accurate and prompt records as well as incident investigations.
  6. Must not have any disabling serious injuries.
  7. Must have an ongoing, posted corrective action tracking process.
  8. Must achieve a 90 percent score on level 2 of the corporate safety audit for safety systems.

“There is no doubt that safety will continue to be a top priority in order to reach our maximum potential," Forrester said. “Leprino Foods is committed to becoming the world's safety company."

Leprino Foods Company
Denver, CO
Manufacturing – Cheese and Whey Products
4,200 Employees/10 Sites
14 Safety, 5 Environmental Professionals

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