Intralogistics for the food industry
Do you know the following diseases? Salmonellosis, clostridiosis, botulism, shigellosis, colibacillosis, rotavirus and, of course, food poisoning. All caused by fungi, bacteria and viruses present in food. That is why it is so important to correctly handle products of this nature.
Handling that must necessarily pass through the hands of professionals involved in the Transport and Intralogistics sectors. In this text we will focus our attention only on the last group. Intralogistics in the food sector is extremely delicate. It requires a lot of special care. Almost all determined by rules and laws. Knowing the legislation is the first step in working with food storage. First of all, not to make anyone sick. But also to avoid fines and the possible cancellation of operations by determination of the Health Surveillance.
There is even a standardization of international food safety systems, created with ISO 22000. The standard built on the high-level hierarchy system standardizes the organizations’ processes, with a focus on safety, quality inspection and elimination of risks that are, in some level, under the control of the company. According to the blog ifope.com.br, “the standard combines fundamental and commonly recognized elements to ensure food safety along the chain, including:
- System management;
- Interactive communication;
- Control of food safety risks through prerequisite programs and HACCP plans (translated into Portuguese as HACCP – Analysis of Hazards and Critical Control Points);
- Continuous improvement and updating of the food safety management system.”
Logistics operators do not need to have ISO 22000. However, knowing it is recommended and, depending on the business partners, implementing it can be interesting. It all depends on the type of food the company will store.
From suppliers to your workforce, you need to ensure that you have quality services throughout the entire food supply chain. It is recommended that a control and monitoring of operations be carried out at all times.
According to the website tecnotri.com.br, “it is necessary to take into account the particularities of each type of food product. Raw materials and unrefrigerated items require separate storage from perishable foods, for example. In addition, each type of food requires a specific package, capable of ensuring its protection and conservation”.
Also ensure that employees have adequate training to handle the products. Remember that they will be handled numerous times, especially during storage. Make it clear to them that product safety is paramount. In other words, CARE WITH HYGIENE MUST BE CONSTANT.
For logistics to be efficient, it is essential that the flow of data and information is constant and very well controlled. Therefore, it is recommended to invest in management software. With it, it is possible to manage all orders, control inventories, select the most suitable equipment and employ the best metrics.
Here are some tools and suggestions that can be useful in Intralogistics in the food sector, according to the Tecnotri website:
- ECRS – To allow a better analysis of the processes, there is a need to carry out a critical and detailed analysis at all stages. ECRS (Eliminate-Combine-Reorganize-Simplify) is a tool that allows you to carry out very detailed analyzes of production processes, focusing on improving the activities involved. The principles behind this tool are:
- Eliminate – Consists of eliminating all operations that do not add value to the operation, identifying actions that may be delaying the process as they are not essential to the overall operation.
- Combine – Combine operations that are similar.
- Reduce – Reduce the time of operations/tasks.
- Simplify – Simplify tasks.
- Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) – Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) measures must be adopted by food industries to ensure production quality and food compliance with technical regulations. GMP can be defined as a group of principles and rules for the correct handling of food, from its raw material to the distribution of the final product, which involves the entire logistics chain. Manufacturers should seek to adopt standard operational hygiene and hazard analysis procedures and critical control points and integrated pest control. The analysis of hazards and critical control points must consider the physical, chemical and biological risks to which foods are subject.
- Pallets for storage – In the United States, for example, more than two billion pallets circulate through the production chain at any given time. Around 94% of industrial materials and domestic consumer goods are transported by pallets at some point in their supply chain. When choosing the pallets used in your logistics operations, you must pay attention to the characteristics of the material used, in order to ensure hygiene and cleanliness throughout the process. An advantage of the plastic pallet is the load capacity, as it proves to be able to support great weights. Extremely robust, these products make it possible to stack boxes, optimizing space in warehouses, without accumulating fungi, bacteria and other contaminating agents.
- Process automation – A current trend is warehousing automation, which now involves features such as order picking systems, pallet stacker cranes, operations shuttles, conveyor belts and management software.
And when are we dealing specifically with perishable foods? The onblox.com.br website has some important guidelines for anyone dealing with such products:
- Evaluate the characteristics of the product;
- Have adequate storage facilities;
- Buy correct equipment for handling and handling;
- Hire skilled labor;
- Make constant investments in training;
- Provide suitable clothing;
- Follow ANVISA’s requirements;
- Invest in the correct hygiene of the environments;
- Better plan your inventories;
- Automate the identification process;
- Improve storage controls;
- Work with KPIs, that is, performance indicators;
- Optimize the tracking of your items in stock;
- Invest in inventory management systems.
Finally, how to manage the warehouse to preserve the products? According to the blog Logística.com.br, “in the case of industrialized products, the ideal method of storage is called First That Wins, First That Comes Out (PVPS). This is a widely used loss prevention tactic to ensure that items closest to their expiration date are sold early, regardless of the date of purchase by the distributor or retailer. This measure is vital to prevent losses and reduce costs related to goods that can already be marketed due to their expiration date. It is also vital that the warehouse has refrigerated chambers, good ventilation and lighting”. The use of barcodes and labels can facilitate the control of goods.
Did you notice that the various sources indicated that a good management system was needed? Well, we at ÁGUIA SISTEMAS are the best in Brazil in Intralogistics. Stay in touch!