The Food Safety Enhancement Act currently in queue for a U.S. Senate vote is calling for greater traceability regulations which could include such things unique I.D.s and full electronic pedigrees, and easy-to-implement bar coding technologies. And while food safety is paramount to the initiative, growers who adopt tighter track and trace procedures can realize benefits beyond compliance.
More label and scan points through a food growers operation including more advanced data capture can provide an extra layer of protection should a food borne illness occur. But a more intelligent traceability solution can provide real business value as well. By gaining visibility into whether a “produce scare” product came from their own farms, growers can not only identify and isolate the problem should it be theirs, significantly reducing the outbreak severity, but they can also gain consumer trust by determining definitively that their produce is safe thereby gaining consumer trust and minimizing lost revenue.
Plus, implementing traceability technologies can also improve overall supply chain efficiency by delivering better inventory control, faster processing and faster turn rate on items that have tight freshness windows.
For those growers looking to adopt traceability technologies, here are a few tips to help assess your technology needs:
Understand what your objectives are when launching a traceability initiative
Establish your mobility requirements
Identify what you want to label
Assess where you want to label
Evaluate your label needs
Identify the demands that will be placed on your label to determine the best type.
Register for your GTINs: (Global Trade Item Number)
Review the capability of your current inventory management and financial software systems.
For more detail on food traceability, take a look at this recent piece in Food Manufacturing.
Do you see opportunities in your operation to improve efficiencies through better traceability?