Effective Inventory Management for Food Manufacturers and Distributors

Effective Inventory Management for Food Manufacturers and Distributors

February 21, 2017

With the public health at stake, food manufacturing/processing/distribution businesses must primarily focus on the safety issues and their elimination. The tracking policy legislation (The Food Safety Modernization Act of 2010) requires food producing companies to meet high traceability expectations. When the security of the food supply comes under the scrutiny of Food Safety Inspection, these businesses have to solve a lot of problems at once – how to ensure traceability, how to make inventory visible in real-time and how to stay profitable? Effective inventory management practices might be the answer to all of this.

Best inventory management practices for food manufacturers and distributors

1. Maintaining inventory levels high enough to satisfy the demand but low enough to avoid having excess product sitting in storage and therefore money tied up.

2. Tracking Quantity On Hand in real-time and sharing the information with other supply chain partners

3. Using purchasing reports to predict the demand

4. Careful planning, forecasting and monitoring, otherwise, you can’t really count on getting the maximum value from inventory

5. Physical inventory counts. Having a physical inventory helps track shrinkage and other discrepancies. The records should also be easily available for local and federal safety food inspections.

6. Serial/lot number traceability. Being able to track serial- and lot –numbered products help make sure they meet safety standards and prevents a product recall crisis. This is probably the most essential component of effective inventory control for food manufacturing and distribution.

The advanced barcoding capabilities and lot/serial number feature of HandiFox can totally come into play to streamline your business and meet the industry standards.

"We have been really happy with HandiFox and what it offers to small businesses like ours.  I even told our Provincial Food Safety inspector about it when they were doing a food safety & traceability review, and they were very impressed!"

Amy Nikkel, Adagio Acres, Owner

Adagio Acres, a producer of rolled oat flakes and steel-cut oats from Canada, scans barcoded lot numbers into each invoice. These lot numbers are then searchable within the desktop reports, which allows them to generate traceability reports for the food safety program and conduct mock recalls effortlessly.

HandiFox allows reading the Lot/Serial number data from barcodes and, in case the barcode doesn’t contain this information, pre-assigning a specific lot/serial number and print the corresponding barcode. You can also see the history of each item and all transactions associated with it.

If you are a food manufacturer or distributor, we invite you to explore HandiFox -  an effective tool for collecting and reporting your inventory data.