Location tracking of goods and vehicles, traceability solutions for managing fresh food inventory, including barcode labelling and tagging, monitoring solutions to check temperature & hunidity of food storage and more
Food production and distribution is one of the world’s largest, most important and complex supply chains connecting three main sectors: the agriculture sector, the food processing industry and the distribution sector. It is composed of farmers, wholesalers, processors, distributors and retailers, all of whom operate in different markets across the globe and sell a huge variety of food products, many of them seasonal. Regulation affects the food supply chain at all levels. The degree of market power held by the firms along the chain varies by product category, depending on the relevant markets in which these firms operate. This has an impact on the contractual relationships between the main players and influences how far increases in agricultural commodity prices translate to increases in consumer prices.
Ensuring the Safety of Food Supply Brings Many Challenges
This complex supply chain inevitably brings many challenges, including:
The need for reliable forecasting of demand: poor forecasting of food requirements in a community can lead to scarcity; improved forecasting can eliminate shortages.
Ensuring food sanitation protocols are followed to prevent contamination, including making sure handlers follow hygiene rules and store perishable foods at the right temperature: milk, cottage cheese, sour cream, ice cream, meat, pork, chicken and seafood will spoil within hours without refrigeration or freezing.
Ensuring that food served hot is hot enough throughout to prevent bacteria from multiplying.
Prevention of theft, which remains a significant supply chain challenge at every step from the farm shipment to the retailer. Groups of thieves are known to track truck shipments and seize on opportunities to strike. Once a truck is heisted, the thieves quickly paint-over all markings and move the goods through backroom and secondary market channels. The Financial Times recently estimated theft losses among U.S. retailers to be in the range of $8–30 billion.
Maintaining food quality, which fundamentally depends on the farmers but can also be reduced by poor storage, packaging and preparation.
Protecting against pests which reduce crop yields and which attack food in transit and storage, resulting in waste.
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