The QS system (acronym for Quality & Safety) is a quality assurance system aimed at offering guarantees of quality and food safety from the field (agricultural or breeding phase) to the shop counter.

The QS system was born in 2001 with the definition of guidelines for the meat sector, but the program gradually developed to also include the certification of the fruit and vegetable sector and the animal feed sector .

QS certification is required by German distribution chains to guarantee the quality of the products and to ensure a production base (product variety, access to the scheme) capable of satisfying the needs of the Distribution.

It is a type of B2C (business to consumer) certification which is communicated to the consumer through the use of a logo which is shown directly on the label .

Membership in the QS program obliges producers to be inspected by a recognized inspection body.

CSQA has obtained the authorization to carry out the certification service against the QS standard.

CSQA is ACCREDIA accredited for the QS scheme, both for the animal supply chain and for the fruit and vegetable supply chain.


Currently, the QS agri-food certification system consists of a specific guideline for each production sector of the supply chain and which represents the technical document against which third-party checks are carried out.

The sectors involved are the meat sector (including animal feed) and the fruit and vegetable sector .

The key elements of the QS standard are:

  • Vertical quality assurance system (from the agricultural phase to the sale / distribution of the finished product)
  • The use of the QS logo to uniquely identify the certified product
  • Control of the entire production process
  • Central database in which all the companies subject to controls and all the results of the checks carried out by the various certification bodies are recorded
  • Sanction system
  • Monitoring program
  • Independent audits performed by CB EN 45011 (ISO/IEC Guide 65) recognized by QS, such as CSQA
  • Crisis management system
  • Documentation system on traceability and controls on the production process of each phase
The heart of QS certification is the quality assurance activity carried out in all stages of the production chain with particular reference to:
  • Food safety and livestock feed safety
  • Mandatory requirements (European legislation on food, hygiene regulations, animal welfare, etc.)
  • Additional requirements to those established by law
  • Salmonella monitoring programme
  • Positive list
  • Residual monitoring
The system of controls envisaged by QS is summarized as follows:

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