For the past 3 years, American restaurant chains have invested in a series of technologies designed to boost revenues and improve customer loyalty. Atop every front counter is a loyalty program tablet-based payment system. Signage encourages you to download the company’s new delivery app and every other television ad drives you to engage with the company’s digital presence. The most recent technology cycle has focused on revenue growth through digital innovation. As that cycle matures, operators need new sources of economic opportunity and the next wave -- the Internet of Things -- is surging towards the kitchen.
The 5 trillion dollar food industry takes safety exceptionally seriously. Customer health and safety depend on rigorous, continuous protocols. Mistakes have devastating financial and cultural consequences for these companies.
The final rules on prevention controls in human and animal food were announced on August 31, 2016. While the dialog about the Food Safety and Modernization Act (FSMA) has been primarily focused on “What is going to be required by a company?”, it is quickly shifting to “How am I going to make sure we are compliant?” If you look at what being FSMA compliant means, it really comes down to defining gaps in your current food safety systems, updating your programs to fill those gaps, and implementing an ongoing program backed up by comprehensive program documentation and record keeping. This is where mobile checklists can help your organization tackle these compliance challenges effectively and efficiently.
Guest Post by: Rosalinda Cerna, MPH, CP-FS, EHS
Environmental Health and Safety Manager, Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services
It is estimated each year that one in six Americans (about 48 million people) gets sick of foodborne illnesses. Each year, 128,000 people end up hospitalized and the annual cost of foodborne illness is around $152 million. With recent events at Chipotle, Blue Bell, and Dole Foods amongst others, food safety has become a very high profile issue. The growing cost and risks around foodborne illness-related incidents has led the food industry to seek out more effective ways of approaching food safety.
Guest Post by: Rosalinda Cerna, MPH, CP-FS, EHSFormer Environmental Health and Safety Manager, Whole Foods Market
In this era of “Farm to Table” retailers are asking themselves an important question: is it possible to efficiently scale a brand built around fresh, locally sourced food? Chipotle--a retailer that has been widely credited as one of the most influential trailblazers of the fast casual dining segment--has been struggling with this question in the midst of numerous foodborne illness outbreaks linked to their restaurants. Its “Food With Integrity” slogan has been under public scrutiny over the past year. This has placed a huge spotlight on all food retailers and their ability to meet consumer demand for fresh and local product with the safest possible product.
Guest Post by: Rosalinda Cerna, MPH, CP-FS, EHS
Former Environmental Health and Safety Manager, Whole Foods Market
In my twenty years as a food safety professional, one of the constant challenges I have come across is maintaining accurate monitoring logs. If there’s one excuse I always hear, it’s “I just did not have enough time to fill out the log.” Traditional paper-based logbooks don’t provide enough transparency or accountability to ensure this critical step in the prevention of foodborne illness is followed through in the most accurate and efficient manner.
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Myles Weissleder and FoodBytes! by Rabobank http://foodbytessummit.com
SAN FRANCISCO – MeWe was delighted to attend the Foodbytes! Summit in San Francisco this month, where we were invited to pitch and present our CoInspect application to more than 250 leaders across the food and tech industries!
We were excited to join the conversation at the IDEATE Conference in Boston earlier this month, along with a group of food innovators passionate about disrupting how food is produced, shared, and consumed!
Food entrepreneurs, chefs, investors and foodies alike gathered in Boston because of its strong community of innovators and intellectual leaders. Our team at MeWe has strong ties to Boston -- we were founded at Harvard and work with many businesses around New England.
Evan Goldberg of MeWe, Inc. explains how his company’s mobile application, CoInspect, is at the forefront of helping food businesses comply with complex health and safety regulations and is increasing operational efficiency along the way. PHOTO Courtesy of Myles Weissleder and FoodBytes! by Rabobank http://foodbytessummit.com
This article was originally posted in Food Quality & Safety magazine. You can read the full article here: http://www.foodqualityandsafety.com/article/quality-assurance-with-mobile-technology
The term “food safety” generally refers to practices used in food handling, storage, and preparation that preserve the quality of food while preventing contamination and spread of foodborne disease. People at every stage of the food supply chain work hard to prevent food from becoming affected, but this can still happen in many ways. Some food products may already contain parasites or bacteria, while others get contaminated during the packaging process. All types of food can become contaminated, but red meat, eggs, poultry, cheese, dairy products, raw sprouts, fish, and shellfish pose a higher risk.