Equitable Food Initiative (EFI)

What is an Equitable Food Initiative (EFI) certification?

Equitable Food Initiative (EFI) is a rigorous certification standard addressing 300+ standards that include labor conditions, food safety and pest management in all levels of the farming operation. Much more than a certification, EFI is a workforce development resource that commits your organization to continuous improvement and helps drive business performance via a multi-stakeholder approach that brings value to everyone in the supply chain. EFI certification requires the training of farmworkers, an annual third-party audit, and ongoing worker-led verification of compliance with EFI Standards.

EFI Standards apply to all fresh fruit and vegetable crops, focusing on three core components: labor practices, pesticide application, and food safety.

The Certification Process

Grower Mapping

Contact EFI to discuss your operations in more detail. This allows EFI to get a better understanding of what will be required for your farm to achieve certification, before issuing a quote for service.


EFI works with the farm to develop a Leadership Team that represents all parts of the workforce. The Leadership Team receives advanced training to help bring the farm into compliance with the EFI Standards.

Auditing and Certification

ELEVATE, partnering with NSF for the food safety and pest management standard, audits the farm and its workforce to assess compliance with the EFI Standards. A corrective action plan, which addresses any non-compliances, must be completed before a certification can be issued.

Product Labeling

Once certified, products can be labeled with the “Responsibly Grown. Farmworker Assured.TM” certification mark, after a Licensing Agreement has been signed.

Ongoing Verification

The Leadership Team monitors the operations throughout the year to assure the certification is being maintained.


EFI requires follow-up engagements and on-going training in order to achieve re-certification on a yearly basis.


  • We are the global leader for independent social compliance audits
  • We are an approved auditing firm for a variety of key US brands and retailers, we can combine multiple standards to the certification process into one audit
  • ELEVATE partners with NSF International to offer a single auditing solution for fresh produce growers pursuing EFI certification.
  • ELEVATE provides the technology to engage with workers through Conecta, an external reporting channel that provides workers with an accessible and timely avenue to raise safety and other concerns.
  • Experts support growers across the Americas from ELEVATE offices in the US. Mexico, Colombia, Chile, and Brazil


Contact us for your next audit

Why you can expect more from ELEVATE.

ELEVATE is proud to be a full member of the Association of Professional Social Compliance Auditors (APSCA).

A certification from ELEVATE means something.  Our brand represents a choice for quality and integrity.

Over the last 7 years, ELEVATE has emerged as the most trusted service provider in responsible sourcing, ethical business and sustainability solutions.  ELEVATE is the only independent sustainability and supply chain services provider with global reach and are engaged at all levels of the value chain. This includes assessment and corrective action plan (CAP) management, engagement with managers and workers at farms and labor recruitment agencies, world-class eLearning and training, and consultancy at the corporate level to assess risk, support improvement and drive impact.

ELEVATE is approved to work with brands, retailers, suppliers and factories to conduct assessments and audits representing a range of industry initiatives. Select a scheme for more information