According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 1 in every 10 people fall ill every year from eating contaminated food. Furthermore, WHO cites that children under the age of 5 years face a higher risk of contaminating foodborne diseases. The under 5 children, who constitute 9% of the world’s total population, account for 30% of global deaths caused by foodborne illnesses.
From time to time, institutions in charge of the safety of food products, such as FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, publish information warning consumers on possibly contaminated food products that need to be recalled by manufacturers.
To mitigate cases of foodborne illnesses and promote food quality and safety, various stakeholders in the food industries can implement quality management software.
Some of the critical approaches through which Quality Management Software can ensure safety across food production chains worldwide include:
Product traceability across all levels of food production, processing, and retailing
Every stakeholder in the food chain-from the primary producers, processors, packers, transporters, up to retailers- have a shared responsibility in ensuring the quality of the final food product. Any deficiencies encountered at any of the production, processing, and retailing stages can, therefore, contribute to contamination and deterioration of the end food product.
By implementing tools such as the Veeva quality management system software, participants in the food industry can locate the source and root cause of particular challenges that compromise the quality and safety of food products. By establishing the source of a problem, substantive remedial actions are taken to avoid recurrence of the same mistakes.
Traceability can be carried out within the confines of a company or expanded to cover the entire food chain. It all depends on the collaboration between partners in the food industry and the amount of resources available to execute the quality control measure.
Observations of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)
GMP is a set of principles and rules implemented in the food industry to ensure the sanitary quality of products are fulfilled at the end of production. The concept of Good Manufacturing Practices originated from the U.S. pharmaceutical industry, which adopted it to optimize technology in their manufacturing practices.
With quality management software, the food industry can seamlessly facilitate the installation of sanitary policies across all levels of production. These software can be incorporated with blockchain technologies to ensure that a broader scope of individuals ascertain hygienic requirements are observed at their workplaces.
Standardization of processes
Standards are technical specifications used to guide the manner how products, processes, and services are achieved. Standardization is necessary for the food production industry to minimize the variations in the quality of food products sold to the consumer.
Food industries can leverage on quality management software to standardize the operational and analytical procedures used in food production. Furthermore, they can be used as a channel to transfer knowledge to all stakeholders on the acceptable food production standards.
Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points Systems (HACCP)
HACCP constitutes proactive measures aimed at preventing hazards in the food industry in to release safe foods to consumers. HACCP is characterized by a complete analysis of the possible dangers that might arise in the production, processing, storage, transporting, handling, retailing, and consumption of food products.
The use of quality management software enables a systematic approach in ensuring control measures are applied for the detected failures in the food industry. The collected technical information is updated in real-time and the identified solutions evaluated during implementation.