Things to Consider When Choosing a Food Ingredients Supplier

Nowadays, consumers read ingredient lists before purchasing. Therefore, you must use high-quality ingredients to gain consumers’ trust in your products. The first step towards quality products is ensuring that your supplier understands the importance of food safety and quality.

While numerous ingredient suppliers exist today, not all are a good fit for your business application. Therefore, before you select an ingredient supplier, ensure that they can fully meet all your ingredients needs.

Here are some things to consider when choosing a food ingredients supplier.

Company History

Before you select an ingredients supplier, check how long the company has been in business and its reputation for quality through the years. You can check crucial information about a company — such as where they source their raw materials and their vision and mission — on their website.

If a company does not have a website, check its social media pages or vet the company through its past clients. Comments by past clients can help you gauge the company’s ability to offer quality products consistently.


A company’s ability to supply quality ingredients on time depends on its facilities. For example, a company with a clean, modern and well-organized warehouse will be better able to maintain the highest levels of food safety and customer service.

Before you choose an ingredients supplier, learn all you can about their facility. What is the origin of the ingredients they will be supplying? If a company sources raw materials or ingredients from abroad, ask about their lead-times and backorder frequency.

Regulatory Compliance and Third Party Certifications

All food ingredients suppliers must comply with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) standards, especially Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

In addition to compliance at the facility, the supplier’s food safety program should regularly assess products and suppliers, to verify third party audit certificates, such as GFSI. You can also ask for additional documentation, if you are interested in meeting special dietary needs, like gluten-free, kosher, halal or allergen-free products.

Customer Service

Especially in these days of constant supply chain challenges, you need to create a close relationship with your supplier. A good supplier should promote excellent customer service through staff training and timely communication. Pricing communications and clear order confirmations make all the difference!


Profitability is crucial for your business; you must ensure that your supplier offers the best prices for their products. However, you should never compromise quality and service, to cut costs.

Only use price to choose the best supplier after considering all the factors above.

Finding a food ingredients supplier may seem challenging, but it is easy if you have the right information.

At TLC Ingredients, we are dedicated to providing the highest levels of customer service, food safety and regulatory compliance, while offering a broad product portfolio from GFSI-certified manufacturers. Contact us today to learn more about our products.