August 30, 2013
Frozen Pomegranates Linked to Hepatitis A Outbreak
Businesses are always looking for ways to lower costs and increase quality. In the food industry, though, quality isn’t just king; it can also be the difference between a person staying healthy or becoming ill. The latter was the case this summer, when pomegranate seeds found in bags of frozen berries were linked to an outbreak of hepatitis A.
With the pomegranate seeds traveling all the way from the country of Turkey to U.S.-based Costco stores, Michael Taylor, FDA’s deputy commissioner for foods, noted the need for new rules in the import of foods, and it seems as though a new system would be equally beneficial.
Statistical process control software would be a great tool for the food industry to utilize in order to help monitor the quality control of its products through every step of the production and distribution process. This software makes it easy to pinpoint issues and concerns way before they become a headache for your company.
In the case of future produce distribution, statistical process control software can be used to ensure that any given batch is automatically inspected. It can also allow employees the ability to track the product using a smartphone from the day that it is picked in a foreign country to the time that it is dropped off in a supermarket. If a food product is frozen for an extraneous amount of time, left in an unrefrigerated warehouse, or if a perishable item is compromised in any way, proper software can help. Specifically, it gives employers the ability to stop the distribution of that food before it ends up in your freezer and to track down the exact distributing truck, warehouse manager or other such employee who was responsible for the quality of your product in the moment that it was compromised.
When it comes to food safety and quality assurance, it can be difficult to overstate the importance of staying ahead of the curve. With statistical process control software, that challenge just got a little bit easier.