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Member Benefits

Quality Assurance

Leading-edge quality assurance has always been at the top of the list of advantages Topco offers its member-owners. It still is. The department’s core competencies include:
  • New Product and Facility Approval – The technical staff is responsible for determining a new product’s acceptability based on established protocols. Topco QA mandates that all food facilities be certified to a Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) benchmarked scheme. Nonfood facilities must complete a Risk Assessment Questionnaire (a comprehensive review of the prospective supplier’s facility and processes) and submit a third-party inspection report from a recognized agency along with the supplier’s corrective action response. Topco QA will use these documents to assess and determine a facility’s overall approval.
  • Product Monitoring – Every six months, Topco QA will evaluate each supplier participating in a Topco-procured category and will provide them with the results along with a required sampling schedule for submission of production samples. Sampling schedules are determined by the product’s inherent risk along with the supplier’s product safety and quality performance throughout the specified time period.
  • Sensory Evaluation - Topco QA’s evaluation capabilities include sensory evaluations. The Topco TopTester Sensory Lab is comprised of a sample preparation and staging center as well as ten booths to accommodate panelists. As panelists evaluate products, they enter their opinions into a web-based portal using tablets and wireless technology. Once a panel has concluded, Quality Assurance associates can then immediately view the results online. The sensory facility is used for a variety of purposes, including evaluations of new, reformulated and existing food items as well as some non-food items. Topco QA can conduct sensory panels in partnership with members or directly on their behalf.
  • Regulatory – By continuously monitoring the regulations that impact our business, Topco QA professionals assure that our products remain in regulatory compliance. The team tracks and maintains necessary certification and registration documents (EPA, Kosher, Organic, etc), reviews packaging, oversees our WIC activity, and is an excellent resource to the Topco membership in all regulatory matters. 
“Topco QA’s mission is to provide Topco member-owners with safe and quality goods that consistently meet or exceed the quality and nutrition levels set by nationally branded products through innovative product development, a risk-based approach to product monitoring, and an industry-leading set of supplier safety and quality requirements. Topco QA will also serve as a product information repository for our member-owners, providing in-depth knowledge of applicable regulatory laws and product attributes across all categories.”

Quality Assurance

Creative Services / Packaging Management

Topco's award-winning team of designers and project coordinators create or refresh package designs for more than 3,000 products each year. The team provides Topco member-owners with creative and eye-catching packaging that help drive sales, develop a competitive advantage and build brand loyalty.

Topco designers work closely with members to develop unique branding and packaging strategies. From appetizing product photography, to illustrations to recipes and product benefits and health attributes, the team designs the whole package, creating a bond between the consumer and the brand.

When creating design options, Topco designers also explore basic legal considerations, technical print constraints, visual graphic cues key to a product category, and national and regional brand standards. This process gives members tremendous flexibility in creating their own corporate look and supporting their overall marketing strategy. Topco's designers are also well skilled at managing vendor/printer variables and navigating potential project pitfalls.

Topco continually assists its members in developing strong store brand programs, which attract customers, builds store brand penetration and secure their competitive advantage in the marketplace.
Creative Services

Member Brands

In addition to the Topco brands described here, Topco manages the member brands for more than 20 of its member-owners, covering more than 20,000 SKUs. Sixty-three percent of Topco's total annual purchases are in member labels. Topco collaborates with each participating member in the procurement and packaging of these products under their own brand name.
Member Brands

 
 
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