Building and protecting trust is a never-ending initiative. World-class companies focus on achieving food safety and quality, and implement the necessary culture and control systems. They also prepare in advance to address any issues that could occur in spite of their best efforts.
In our experience, the following represent best practices in the global food industry.
Behaviour change and continuous improvement are employed to establish and maintain a strong culture of safety and quality at every level of the organisation, both internally and in suppliers. Risks are identified and managed with ongoing hazard analysis and monitoring of leading indicators.
Executives must assume more supervisory responsibilities and be fully engaged with food trust issues. Participation in industry bodies and thought leadership is essential to develop a culture that is relevant and responsive to current and emerging issues.
The best companies have complete oversight over their suppliers and every stage of the supply chain, with risk management procedures tailored for multiple geographies. These companies regularly reassess supply chain risks and benchmark against current best practice.
Best in class companies ensure that their resources and efforts are focused on fighting their biggest threats. They conduct stringent risk analysis of areas where food trust issues could arise, and consider the potential impact to the organisation’s value and ability to achieve strategic objectives.
Vertical integration offers maximum control and transparency throughout the entire supply chain, and enables a more structured approach to risk management and crisis planning.
The best companies continuously invest in new technology to enhance controls, monitoring, hazard detection, traceability and data analysis.
Trusted companies approach food safety issues and crisis events with swift remedial action and open, honest communication. They prepare for events with scenario analysis, planning and rehearsal, and have robust product recall and crisis procedures.
Operational and food trust due diligence is fundamental to managing risk in food sector acquisitions. This includes the systems and processes at production sites, as well as culture, governance, supplier risk and support functions such as HR and IT.