As an industry we are a major contributor of taxes and employment to the UK economy, in return our various government agencies, and I am not bothered who, should be collating this data from around the world, and making it available free of charge to the food industry who can then use their specification management systems and supplier approval management systems to filter what issues may be a food safety risk in their business.
As the UK enters the last month of 2015’s first quarter, food manufacturers should have clear-cut plans on how to address the obstacles to come. So what should companies be looking out for? Read on for an overview of the key challenges manufacturers are set to encounter in 2015:
Potential adultery in the food chain
Over the past few years food fraud has emerged as a major problem for manufacturers and retailers across the globe. With the potential to generate more income than other serious crimes such as drug smuggling yet with far more lenient punishments, food fraud is on the up. With schemes now in place by the FSA, parties found guilty of food fraud face fines and jail sentences but crime within the industry is still a problem.
In January 2015 BRC Global Food Safety Standard Issue 7 was released and full audits will be commonplace by July. The new version includes a variety of changes including new rules on purchasing products from agents and assessing risks on incoming raw materials. Manufacturers will need to keep updated with the v7 requirements to keep their BRC accreditation.
Increase in unannounced audits
In 2015 manufacturers will have to be prepared for an increase in unannounced audits. These are designed to keep businesses on their toes and ensure that compliance is maintained at all times.
Tesco cutting 30% of their products in August
Tesco recently announced it will be cutting 30% of its products in August 2015, which seriously stung both British and international food manufacturers and suppliers. Supermarket competition will now be much greater, meaning that to win a place on Tesco shelves manufacturers will have to up their games.
Finding time in diaries to attend the QADEX conference
The QADEX conference is a must attend event for anyone with an interest in food safety and compliance. Of course, finding the time to attend the event can be difficult which is why QADEX is encouraging companies to pencil it in now and plan well in advance.