Quality Monitoring Program

The Quality Monitoring Program (QMP) was developed to assist buyers in monitoring the quality of the fruit and vegetable products they receive, handle, and/or produce. QMP provides a firm with objective, third party assessments of product quality. These evaluations may be based on official U.S. grade standards or customer quality specifications, with the frequency and scope of the review tailored to meet user needs. Companies interested in demonstrating to its customers that they have an effective, systematic approach to controlling the quality and condition of their products would use this service.

The QMP service can be applied to a wide range of commodities, and, for some, includes product specific program requirements. Entry into QMP for certain products, may require a firm to meet specific program criteria. This voluntary, user-fee service is available upon request to any financially interested party.

There are several benefits of using this service:

  • Utilizes USDA as an independent 3rd-party source of objective information about the products a firm is receiving, handling, or producing;
  • Provides an “official seal” to indicate program participation;
  • Can complement a firm’s quality assurance program by verifying the quality and condition of fresh and processed fruits and vegetables;
  • Can be uniquely structured to meet individual firm’s needs, as long as certain program requirements are met;
  • Provides a cost-effective option for obtaining USDA’s expert product evaluation service; and; 
  • Can help firms inform their customers about the quality of their products.

QMP can be utilized to augment a company’s existing quality assurance program with an independent review of product. This evaluation can be performed on “official samples” systematically selected by USDA representatives, or, in some cases, on product samples supplied by the firm. Evaluation may focus on a specific quality factor, or numerous quality factors, and may additionally address packaging or other requirements. For ease of use, examination results can be reported in a customer-designed format. Program participants must meet certain contract requirements that vary based on the commodity(s) under the program. Once approved in the program, companies can market their products using an “official seal” on product labels to indicate their participation in QMP (not all QMP services qualify for authorization to use the QMP Seal).

Contact Information

Telephone: (800) 560-7956
Email: SCIinspectionoperations@ams.usda.gov