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March 1, 2021

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Feb. 24, 2021 - The Upcycled Food Association (UFA) announces the launch of the certification Beta Program, the pilot initiative for the rollout of the new Upcycled Certification Program. The Upcycled Certification Program is a third-party certification program that sets a robust and credible framework for the certification of both upcycled ingredients and products within the food & beverage, cosmetics, household cleaner, companion pet food, dietary supplement and personal care product spaces. UFA invites companies on the leading edge of the upcycled food industry seeking to certify upcycled products and/or ingredients for sale within the U.S. to apply to participate by visiting upcycledfood.org/certification-beta-program and submitting an application before the March 10th deadline.

The Certification Program encourages food waste prevention efforts and aids the growth of the upcycled food economy, helping to drive a more circular food system. Certification Program growth will allow retailers to highlight this burgeoning sustainable product category, increasing consumer awareness, and allowing more consumers to contribute to the most effective solution to climate change with every purchase.

Selected Beta Program participants will go through the certification process, helping to test certification program procedures and inform any necessary improvements to implementation prior to full rollout of Certification Program. The ingredients and products that successfully complete the Beta Program process will become the first to be certified under the pioneering Certification Program. 

“Many have been waiting with great anticipation for the Upcycled Certification Program to become a reality and that day has now arrived! We’re eager to work alongside the Beta Program participants to put the final touches on a Certification Program that will give consumers the power to prevent food waste and could be the catalyst for a fundamental change in the food system as we know it.” - Ben Gray MS, RD, COO of the Upcycled Food Association. 

UFA is excited to team up with Where Food Comes From (WFCF) a leading provider of certification and verification services to the food industry to serve as the exclusive third-party certifying body for the launch of the Upcycled Certification Program. Leann Saunders, president of Where Food Comes From, said, “Our selection as the exclusive certifier for the Upcycled program puts Where Food Comes From at the forefront of an important new sustainability movement in the US today.  We are excited to work with the Upcycled Foods Association and the many growers, processors and products companies that have committed to reducing food waste by employing transparent and sustainable production processes.”

The launch of the Certification Program comes at a time when the sustainability space is abuzz with interest and innovation, as organizations such as Project Drawdown cite addressing food waste as the most effective solution to climate change. Whole Foods Market recently named upcycled food a top trend for 2021 and multiple recent studies have also shown more than half of consumers want to purchase more upcycled products. 

Women and BIPOC owned companies are especially encouraged to apply to the Beta Program. Please visit https://www.upcycledfood.org/certification-beta-program for more information including full eligibility requirements and the program application. Questions about the Beta program may be sent to certificationupcycledfood.org  Upcycled Food Association (UFA) - The Upcycled Food Association is a nonprofit focused on reducing food waste by growing the upcycled food economy. Through research, standardization, and consumer education, the Upcycled Food Association is building a food system in which all food is elevated to its highest and best use. Our Member businesses represent the next generation of sustainable food. To learn more, visit www.upcycledfood.org   Where Food Comes From, Inc.Where Food Comes From, Inc. is America’s trusted resource for third party verification of food production practices.  Through proprietary technology and patented business processes, the Company supports more than 15,000 farmers, ranchers, vineyards, wineries, processors, retailers, distributors, trade associations, consumer brands and restaurants with a wide variety of value-added services. Through its IMI Global, Validus Verification Services, SureHarvest, WFCF Organic and Postelsia units, Where Food Comes From solutions are used to verify food claims, optimize production practices and enable food supply chains with analytics and data driven insights. In addition, the Company’s Where Food Comes From® retail and restaurant labeling program uses web-based customer education tools to connect consumers to the sources of the food they purchase, increasing meaningful consumer engagement for our clients.  

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