The Role of Corporate Culture in Food Safety

The Role of Corporate Culture in Food Safety
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Ensuring food safety and protecting consumers are of primary importance to players in the foodservice industry.

Top company officials – from chief executive officer down to the quality analyst at the company’s plant – know that the above objectives must be met consistently. In the end, doing so would mean that company officials have successfully protected their brand and business.

It is the concern of a company and the whole food and related industries as well when recalls and defective products arise. One company’s bad publicity will have a domino effect on other industry players.

Latest industry data shows that consumers involvement on how food recalls should be handled has helped all stakeholders in assuring safety on all fronts. With consumers’ insistence on greater transparency level in the food origin, safety, and ingredients, consumer peers and groups have emerged as top sources of information. Thus, it would be easier for consumers to facilitate checks and balances on the information they are getting.

One pivotal player that has a major impact in food safety transparency is the corporation itself or the organization and its people who are responsible in pushing a product or products into the mainstream market.

Note that the increased media awareness every time a food recall occurs has caught the attention not only of consumers but also the regulators and the companies which relies on high consumer confidence to make their business grows more. The challenge now for food companies is to ensure such confidence level is maintained every day. And here are the top corporate responses that should ensure consumers have assured the food being served in their tables are safe all the time:

No Assumptions

How corporate entities do away with the tendency to assume that a supplier is delivering safe ingredients? The answer lies in the efficacy, veracity, and validity of food system in place in the organization. That’s where food safety policies come into play and this involves several processes – from procurement to final distribution channels.

It is incumbent for the food industry to fill in the gaps in the whole procurement and distribution cycles so they can control the areas that matter concerning safety issues. The presence of regulators is a good assurance for consumers, but food companies and their respective managers must ask themselves if they are willing to feed the food they are marketing to be served to their own children every day.

Employ Improvement Process

Consumer expectations are high, and companies engaged in the food sector must adopt a proactive approach in dealing with the numerous challenges they face.  Companies must empower its staff and deploy a continuous improvement process where there is active involvement of management. These should apply in all cycles of the supply chain to establish food safety protocols are observed at all times.

Once in place, the continuous improvement process can lead to repeat business and new opportunities in terms of products and service offerings. The use of top-notch recipe nutrition calculator in restaurants, for instance, is a good indicator that management is taking precautions in maintaining the integrity of the food it serves to the general public.

Follow Regulatory Standards

Food companies that stringently adopt regulations in their respective operations have a clear path of achieving success in their food safety campaigns. Cooperating with safety authorities and implementing the rules carefully deliberated by those in authority is an essential corporate culture that must be imbibed.

It is advisable not to wait for regulators to call a company’s attention especially if there are food-safety related complaints coming from consumers. A responsible organization must have full understanding of what the safety rules are and how they judiciously apply these rules to protect the interest of the consumers.

A strong management team of a food company must document the food safety precautions they are following and should explain such precautions to all staff. With such an assertive corporate culture, food safety is valued constantly by all members of the organization.

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