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  • Agustina Branz

Traceability: A Consumer’s Right, A Supply Chain Manager’s Headache

Traceability has become a major factor in the ingredient industry for consumers and manufacturers alike.

Increased awareness of international farming and environmental issues means your customers are far more aware of the role their purchase plays in the international community. And it’s also become a reliable way to improve food safety and mitigate the use of dangerous products.

Whatever the reasons for being interested in the origins of food, traceability is an important issue that affects us all.

But even though traceability matters to consumers, it can be increasingly difficult for supply chain managers to ensure traceability when working with bulk wholesale orders in a vast international sourcing environment.

So grab a snack and let's have a chat about how traceability can be optimized in your supply chain.

Why Traceability Matters to Consumers

Increased awareness of farming conditions and the international impact of ingredient supply chains has helped consumers join the battle for a more sustainable and transparent food industry.

As such, it’s become a vital part of consumer decision-making. These are just a few of the major reasons why traceability matters to consumers:

Improved health & food safety awareness

Traceability assists with transparency when health risks and contaminations occur. It ensures that the source of the problem can be quickly identified, and the affected products removed from the market, as was seen in the recent recall of Impossible Foods’ plant-based chicken nuggets. Over the years it has become a vital part of mitigating illnesses and medical risks caused by contaminated products.

Increased awareness of environmental impact

Consumers are increasingly aware of the impact their food choices have on the planet, and traceability can help them make more informed choices. For example, by knowing where their food comes from, consumers can make decisions about the distance it has traveled and the farming practices used to produce it.

Creating an ethical consumer journey

Thanks to increased traceability, consumers can know that the food they're eating has been produced in an environment that is fair to workers and animals. Traceability helps to ensure that products are not associated with human rights violations, animal cruelty, or other unethical practices.

Overall, traceability is a crucial issue for consumers who want to make informed decisions about the food they eat. But it also helps the industry identify trends in risk-prone environments or crops that can help mitigate future contaminations.

But offering that transparency to consumers can be a complex task for supply chain managers and product manufacturers.

Why traceability isn’t always an easy box to tick

Traceability has become a vital part of safety management and it’s important for supply chain managers to remain aware of the full product journey. But it's also becoming more difficult to achieve due to more intricate ingredient journeys, especially when buying wholesale.

These are a handful of the top reasons why traceability has become more challenging:

Increasingly complex supply chains

As soon as multiple intermediaries become involved in the process of getting products to market, especially when sourcing globally, it’s difficult to keep track of where each ingredient came from.

Varying regulatory compliance

Regulations surrounding traceability can vary from country to country, making it difficult for supply chain managers to implement consistent standards across different regions.

So how can you ensure that your products offer your customers the assurance they need? By finding a supplier that stays as close to the sourcing journey as possible.

How to simplify the complexities of global supply chain challenges

Technology like blockchain and radio-frequency identification (RFID) has done marvels in improving the security and traceability of ingredient supply chains. And data analytics tools are helping supply managers identify trends, spot potential issues, and make more informed decisions.

But there’s one vital difference that Ingredient Brothers offers in these complex sourcing times: Simplicity.

As a supplier, we give you back a sense of simplicity when it comes to ingredient sourcing through these key differences:

Maintaining direct relationships with vendors

We maintain direct relationships with vendors and farmers and simplify the supply chain to allow for increased traceability.

Standardized quality assurance checks

Ingredient Brothers apply additional quality controls on top of required regulations to ensure compliance at the highest levels, as well as increased food safety reliability.

On-shore warehouse storage

Our warehouse facilities in New Jersey and Los Angeles help us mitigate the need for multiple intermediaries and avoid many of the supply chain challenges that other importers face.

Thanks to Ingredient Brothers’ straightforward hands-on approach, we’re able to offer our clients a reliable ​​Requirements Traceability Matrix (RTM) that maps the journey of their products in detail.

So do you want to give your customers the information they need to make more informed decisions when it comes to choosing your products and increase your brand’s reliability to boot?

Talk to us to make traceability a part of your brand’s consumer experience.

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