By Larry Clark, CEO of Nanoguard Technologies
Finding your mistakes before going to market is a big deal. This is especially true in the food and feed industries. By reducing cross-contamination and the spread of harmful pathogens, the food and feed industry can produce better results for the farmer and the consumer. Consumers want to trust the food they get from their local grocery store, while farmers and suppliers want a loyal customer.
But the food supply chain is in disarray. Products move around freely, inviting all kinds of potential problems. Without detection and early mitigation, cross-contamination can significantly affect the product, making it unusable for suppliers and consumers alike. Once contaminated products go into production, they are placed in the same processing equipment as other foods. If contaminated, they will effectively contaminate everything else.
The initial mitigation begins with the farmer. They are encouraged to produce and offer clean foods because the reputation of their distributors will directly affect their bottom line. This is true for everyone in the supply chain. But when discussing initial mitigation, the best place to start is the source.
benefits of early mitigation
To be sure, getting ahead of potential contamination issues is simply good business. People want their food to be clean and safe. trust is everything. When someone has a bad experience with a food product, it is unlikely to return. By detecting contaminants early and removing or removing them from the supply chain, you can ensure that other food in the supply chain is clean as well.
Early mitigation is good for the environment. By catching contamination early, food waste can be reduced. When you think of mitigation, ultimately you are thinking of sustainability. Less waste equals less methane escaping from landfills. Less waste is also good for revenue. When you can reduce the amount of food waste produced, everyone in the supply chain gets a bigger payday. Less waste equals more money.
The sooner you can catch contamination or pathogens, the less likely it is that the rest of the supply chain will be affected. And the less affected the supply chain, the higher the ROI farmers and suppliers will see with their food. or, as Food and Drug Administration said In 2012: “If every pathogen included in FDA-regulated foods could be eradicated, the food industry would save $6.32 billion annually.”
Yes, you read that right: $6.32 One billion, One germ can ruin an entire supply chain. Early mitigation means you can find single links that need to be removed, as a single link can act as a multiplier in a supply chain. The more contamination there is, the more it multiplies, which means that food waste also increases manifold.
This is especially true in the United States, where we have high expectations and strict government standards for our food. below Food Security Modernization Act As of 2011, companies face even more scrutiny, especially if they’ve had issues in the past. After all, there is a saying in the food safety industry “The more you look, the more you find.”
Early quenching leads to less recall. This is a good thing considering how expensive the recall can be. It is estimated that the cost of a safety recall in the food industry is on average $10 million, The ripple effects could extend far beyond that because if consumers become ill from contaminated food, they can push that brand away from the go-ahead.
Best practices for early mitigation
The reality is that there will be pollution. However, by catching it early, you can maintain the value of your product.
The best way to achieve early mitigation is through sharing of knowledge. Save for a few big brands, knowledge-sharing is common practice in the food industry. This is a good thing. If one company has a problem, it usually spreads to the rest of the industry. Sharing that information is important.
Firstly to prevent contamination, you need to start from the time of planting the crop. A lot of things can go wrong in the growing phase, so it is imperative that farmers cultivate the best for their crops. A common example: a lack of water can cause the kernels to crack, which can allow mold to infiltrate the seeds and possibly contaminate the entire supply chain. Or, if it is exceptionally wet and hot, the fungus may germinate and become harder to control. Due to these factors, proper water technology has become the biggest key to early mitigation.
Another important element of early mitigation is storage. Farmers need to be aware of the places where they are storing their crops, as some environments invite mold and fungus. Not only does this contaminate the crop, but it also reduces the weight of the crop, which means a lower ROI for everyone involved.
Farmers do incredible work and have a lot on their plates, and it is up to the food industry to support them with the goal of speedy mitigation. There are factors that farmers cannot control easily. Even if a farmer notices a defect in their crop, they may not know how to deal with it. This is where the rest of the industry comes in, helping to find mitigation strategies to employ everyone in the supply chain. The better the harvest, the better the outcome for everyone in the chain.
However, this area is not the only place to note potential contamination. It is important to test products at each stage of the supply chain. Just because grain leaves the field clean doesn’t mean it can’t get contaminated elsewhere along the way; Being vulnerable because of the solution is an old idea. Thorough and frequent testing can reveal where contamination occurs to great benefit to the supply chain later on.
How can advanced technology help?
Using genome sequencing, scientists have been able to determine which bacteria make people sick the most. This sequencing, known as whole genome sequencing, may also provide answers to why some bacteria are more or less resistant to antibiotics. By being able to find this information, scientists can track trends in outbreaks and diseases. In spotting those trends, scientists can then get a better idea of what contaminated food is and where the contaminants originated.
Elsewhere, artificial intelligence and blockchain are being used to track food right from its source. This is great for a few reasons: These technologies help bring products to market much quicker (which is a huge plus), but more importantly, they allow us to monitor and track contaminated food. Huh. This is huge for early detection and mitigation, and means a safer end product for the consumer. These advancements are also great for everyone’s bottom line because they help eliminate food waste.
are even new technologies To help kill contaminants in actively contaminated food, such as a cold plasma technology that will kill pathogenic microorganisms on the food or feed without affecting the quality of the product.
And the prices of these technologies are coming down. This means more businesses can now take advantage, making our food safer. Advanced technologies have proven their worth when it comes to ROI, but smaller companies often have to pay the price for these game-changing capabilities. We need these technologies to reach as many suppliers as possible and be implemented without huge costs or changes in the supply chain.
Ensuring that food industry leaders, and others all through the supply chain, are educated about enhancing food security, means we can be in the driver’s seat of growth by improving the quality of our food and feed. Huh. By being active, we can eat safer and have less memory. As a result, consumers are more confident in the product, and everyone in the supply chain benefits.
larry clark is the CEO of Nanoguard TechnologiesA company that prevents food and feed waste and improves food security by eliminating harmful pathogens and mycotoxins through Airlization Techniques, He has over 30 years of experience in agribusiness, including global business management, trade and international operations.