Health, safety and quality control are imperative when it comes to food production. However, despite the many precautions food manufacturers take to ensure the safety and quality of their products, the Australian government estimates there are 5.4 million cases of foodborne disease per year, costing A$1.2 billion annually.
Such alarming numbers have put the focus back on supply chain traceability. Food manufacturers face many challenges in managing perishable raw materials, making deliveries, tracking use-by dates and adhering to strict food safety regulations.
Juggling all these requirements, while trying to control cost and manage growth, can be tricky. Food manufacturers are constantly under pressure to deal with a high volume of raw material, balance numerous transactions and manage distribution difficulties at scale.
However, food manufacturers can ensure high quality across the supply chain by following these three basic strategies:
- Manage expiration dates
The perishable nature of raw materials makes things tricky for food manufacturers. Closely monitoring the expiration dates of raw materials and final goods in real time can help manufacturers understand how fast a product needs to be moved or consumed. Doing so will not only help maintain the freshness of the product, but also reduce wastage as items won’t be left to expire on the shelf.
- Focus on quality
For a food manufacturer, ensuring high quality across the supply chain is important because the end-product affects not only the health and well-being of consumers, but also of their company. Tracking your ingredients at every step of the production process can help minimise the risk of a product recall, and ensure your products are free from toxins or contaminants.
- Avoid overstocking
Overstocking is nothing but money lost in wastage. Whilst food manufacturers often face unpredictable supply and demand, overstocking will only make matters worse for your organisation. Failing to use material within its stipulated time can place your entire production unit at risk of contamination. It’s therefore critical to avoid overstocking and practice lean manufacturing to save money and reduce wastage.
Managing the many complex facets of the supply chain requires a great deal of effort. As a small manufacturer or a start-up, you might have found it easy to use spreadsheets or keep manual records to maintain business information. However, as your business grows, you will need a comprehensive software solution that protects your brand, minimises your losses and enables you to provide high quality products to your consumers.
How can Sage help you enhance supply chain management?
See how Sage X3 can help your food and beverage company minimise waste to reduce costs and risk, and accelerate compliance.
 Department of Health, 2018