With the advent of Industry 4.0, food manufacturers can leverage new connected devices to help reduce the risk of recalls and manage them more efficiently when they do occur.
As seen in the recent article, Industry 4.0: What It Means for the Manufacturing Industry, manufacturers are realizing dramatic changes to business processes and business models by using new technologies. Recall management is one area where these new tools can transform how companies operate.
1. Cost reduction
In food and beverage manufacturing, the costs of a recall are considerable, especially given new federal guidelines requiring closer controls and management of recalls. As the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Food Safety Modernization Act takes full effect, companies need to have clear procedures in place to identify potential risks, remediation steps, and extensive track-and-trace details at the ready.
The cost of quality management is reduced, too. IoT technologies such as data capture, high-resolution imaging, and analytics help improve the quality and speed of inspections.
As digital manufacturers maximize the utility of tools to monitor and trace foods and ingredients, recall plans can be developed that reduce overall costs by quickly identifying sources and customers, uses, and affected batches. Faster recall processes with less impact means less short-term cost and less damage to brand reputations.
2. Real-time monitoring
The industrial Internet of Things lets companies use sensors and wireless technology to record and send information that can be analyzed in real time. Analytics programs can display massive amounts of data in reports and dashboards that enable more accurate monitoring throughout the manufacturing process and throughout the supply chain.
IoT tools also enable manufacturers to monitor finished products well after they leave the plant or warehouse. These sensors enable post-production monitoring of factors such as temperature, allowing for food safety issues to be identified and corrected before they become problems.
3. Digitized processes
With digital technology, the processes related to recall management are enhanced over traditional systems. Manufacturers will be able to better understand what caused a recall and how to change procedures or processes to reduce the likelihood of repeating those mistakes. Digital tech also enables the collection of information about how users are using the products and allows organizations to improve manufacturing processes to respond to those uses to ensure safe consumption.
4. Critical points
The new federal food safety guidelines require manufacturers to take measurements at critical control points. Deploying digital tools at these critical points allow manufacturers to begin testing industry 4.0 functionality, especially if cost is an issue, while maintaining regulatory compliance. Real-time data gathering will identify issues at key manufacturing junctures and reduce the risk of issues of contamination threatening more product.
5. Faster decision-making
Today’s technologies enable manufacturers to equip employees with real-time information that is critical for good decisions. Analytics can display information that is necessary to make real-time decisions that are essential for reducing risk. Decisions that previously were made on a hunch, by observation only, or later in the process can now be done faster with more confidence and better results.
6. More security
Regulators, customers, and the general public recognize that cyber threats can affect not just computer systems but products themselves. By taking control of digital manufacturing systems, a bad actor could cause considerable damage to consumers. With connected objects comes the opportunity to monitor, restrict access, and report intrusion attempts that may otherwise be undetected.
At NexTec, we work with food and beverage manufacturers to identify their system needs that allow for better recall management. Our consultants have deep insights into the strengths of top enterprise resource planning products like Sage X3 ERP to help our clients make the best decisions for leveraging Industry 4.0.
Download the NexTec Food Brochure to learn more about how new technologies can transform your food and beverage business.