In July, the FDA announced the New Era of Smarter Food Safety, a new approach to food safety that leverages “technology and other tools to create a safer and more digital, traceable food system.” The FDA focus is on four elements for reducing foodborne illness: tech-enabled traceability, smarter tools and approaches for prevention and outbreak response, new business models and retail modernization and food safety culture.”
According to the FDA, when it comes to food traceability, “many in the food system still utilize a largely paper-based system of taking one step forward to identify where the food has gone and one step back to identify the source. The use of new and evolving digital technologies envisioned in the New Era of Smarter Food Safety will play a pivotal role in tracing the origin of a contaminated food to its source in minutes, or even seconds, instead of days or weeks.”
And, of course, the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated interest in digital technologies, including those that will improve food traceability.
Meeting Traceability Challenges
Food traceability isn’t just an industry concern. As Zebra’s recent Food Safety Supply Chain Vision Study found, both consumers and industry decision makers are concerned about the source, quality and safety of their food. Nearly 70% of decision makers say the industry is well equipped to manage food traceability and transparency, but only 35% of consumers agree.
Recent product recalls and food safety incidents, new FDA food safety goals, the Produce Traceability Initiative (PTI), an industry-led program designed to help the industry adopt electronic traceability across the supply chain—as well as new food safety threats posed by the COVID-19 pandemic—are among many factors driving the need for new and improved traceability solutions.
The Zebra study found that nearly all (90%) of industry decision makers acknowledge that investments in traceability-focused solutions will provide them with a competitive advantage, by enabling them to meet consumer expectations.
Food Safety Scanning Solutions
Most (90%) of the industry decision maker respondents to the Zebra study say they expect to use rugged barcode scanners and other mobile technology within the next five years to digitally manage and track food products and related information.
Zebra’s ultra-rugged handheld scanners can help food manufacturers and warehousing operations achieve food traceability goals by creating a complete record of every product as it moves through each step in the facility. The Zebra 3600 line of ultra-rugged scanners, for example, is a new class of handheld scanner built to deliver the unstoppable performance required by today’s demanding environments.
Integrated with RedLine’s produce software, Zebra scanners can help you achieve fast and accurate barcode capture and meet end-to-end product traceability requirements. Redline Solutions’ industry-leading management, inventory and traceability solution provides a practical inventory control tool for produce growers, shippers and distributors. Our software suite enables fast, accurate, electronic collection of all product movements and transactions—updating our current system with real-time data, while providing your staff with actionable information that enables them to be more accurate, productive and efficient.
If you are a grower, shipper or distributor of fresh produce, our software will enable you to easily manage your fresh produce inventory and orders, from receipt through shipment, including the management of bins, cases and pallets, pack lines, label printing, order management, shipment processing and more.
With Zebra handheld scanners and Redline produce software, we can help you improve staff productivity in your facility and the web UI can be securely accessed by you from anywhere.
End-to-end traceability starts here. Find out how Zebra’s series of ultra-rugged handheld scanners—integrated with RedLine’s industry-leading management, inventory and traceability solution—can help you achieve unparalleled, end-to-end visibility and unheralded productivity.
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