Making recalls almost hassle free using traceability
Recalls happen no matter how much effort a company puts in to producing safe and reliable products. They can have a significant impact in the food and beverage industry through both financial and reputational damages. However, it is possible to minimize your losses, but preparations must be made to avoid more costly consequences.
Before getting in to the preparations required in the event of recalls, let’s break down the recall problem to see why it is so challenging in today’s world:
The recalled product may have started at any level of manufacturing including raw materials, intermediate products and finished goods. If the problem occurred at a raw material phase, several different intermediate products and finished goods can be affected by the time the product needs to be recalled.
The same product may now be packaged under different names, brands and packages. For example, a notice is issued that a juice at a specific manufacturing plant is being recalled. The juice may have been produced in batches of a thousand gallons, but by the time it reaches consumers, this product is now available in 16 ounce plastic bottles, one liter bottles, kid sized containers and under several private labels.
Though the contamination may have first started in one small location, thanks to modern technology and transportation, the recalled products may now be all across the country, or even halfway around the world.
The solution is simple: you need traceability and to have an action plan prior to experiencing a recall.
Recall action plan
When a recall is necessary, fast response time is of the utmost importance. Do not wait for a recall to happen before coming up with a plan. Make sure your recall action plan does not only outline recall instructions but also a post-recall evaluation. Assess the recall’s success, and make any necessary changes to the recall plan. This will help ensure that if a product recall is to ever necessary again, the process will go smoothly.
Lot tracing tool
In the case of a recalled product, manufacturing companies must have the tools to not only track down the source of the problem, but to do so in an accurate and timely manner. Lot tracing systems, such as RSM’s advanced lot trace that is available for Microsoft Dynamics® AX, are designed especially for this task. Some important features to have in a lot tracing tool are forward and backward tracking, filtering by date and time ranges, and advanced filter capabilities.
Recalls can be stressful, challenging and costly, but taking the right steps before a product recall happens can help minimize financial losses and ensure less damage on a business’s reputation. So be sure to have the proper preparations made before it is too late.