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Logging traceability information

This sub process describes the requirements, recommendations and guidelines that STAND has for raw materials, input factors, packaging and finished products traded in the retail trade.

The areas described are:

  • What is traceability
  • Which product areas are covered by traceability requirements
  • Which traceability requirements apply
  • Which traceability information should be registered
  • Traceability options

Requirements for traceability of products

The law requires that each company should have systems to document which products have been purchased from the individual supplier and which customer has purchased the company’s finished products. This also includes raw materials and other input factors covered by the legislation, ref.

Product areas covered by guidelines for traceability, recall and withdrawal.

The policies include traceability for:

  • commodities, plants, animals or food stuff
  • materials and objects that are intended to encounter, or may affect, commodities or food stuff.

The guidelines are recommended for foods and non-food products, except for pharmaceuticals.

Areas not described in the guidelines

  • Internal tracking systems
  • Fodder, allergic practices and agricultural practices, including the use of GMOs
  • Prevention of pollution (e.g. disinfectants)
  • Development and implementation of quality assurance in a company
  • Implementation of product and / or pallet labelling systems, etc.

The above areas are not described in the guidelines, but do not mean that there are no provisions or regulations for this elsewhere.

There is no requirement in the legislation for the types of systems to be used for this.
Traceability can be manually based in the simplest form, while others have an advanced IT system to follow up on this.

Central to the legislation is the duty of each company to undertake risk analysis over which health risks the products represent, and how the company will relate to this in terms of traceability.

Businesses can practice more comprehensive traceability systems than the minimum requirements of the law, but this is either based on self-imposed claims or agreements with, and orders from, the contracting parties.

Traceability
Traceability is based on following the physical commodity flow.
All parties should be able to track their products one step forward and one backwards.

Traceability one step forward:
Traceability one step forward means the address to which the products are delivered to.
An invoice system that contains information about item number / tradename, customer number / customer name and invoice date is sufficient to track a step forward in the value chain.

If your business has one batch concept, this should be included in the invoice, Despatch Advice or that the company’s own expedition system is directly linked to the invoice.

Traceability one step backwards:
Traceability one step backwards means the address the products are delivered from.
The company must provide a log of received products describing which products are purchased from whom and in what quantity on date.

If the addresses for where products are delivered from or delivered to are not in accordance with the legal ownership of the products and the invoice fee, this should be agreed separately between the parties.

Requirements for traceability information and labelling

The main purpose of tracking information is to provide a basis for effective withdrawal/recall of food and other products as a part of consumer expectations for safe products.

Traceability information also includes raw materials and other input factors used in the production of finished products, ref.

Product areas covered by guidelines for traceability, recall and withdrawal.

The policies include traceability for:

  • commodities, plants, animals or food stuff
  • materials and objects that are intended to encounter, or may affect, commodities or food stuff.

The guidelines are recommended for foods and non-food products, except for pharmaceuticals.

Areas not described in the guidelines

  • Internal tracking systems
  • Fodder, allergic practices and agricultural practices, including the use of GMOs
  • Prevention of pollution (e.g. disinfectants)
  • Development and implementation of quality assurance in a company
  • Implementation of product and / or pallet labelling systems, etc.

The above areas are not described in the guidelines, but do not mean that there are no provisions or regulations for this elsewhere.

Traceability information and labelling
EU Regulation 178/2002 requires the products to be labelled to enable traceability.
The labelling must be affixed to the product packaging and be readable.

The information that shall be marked on the product:

  • Supplier Name
  • Item number / tradename

In addition, the sender’s system must have an overview of which recipient the products have been sent to. The recipient must have an overview of which sender the products are received from.

Information that can be labelled on the products and which will simplify the work:

  • Best before date
  • Expiry date
  • Batch / Lot number
  • Identification of load carrier (eg pallet)

In addition, it is recommended:

Sender to register:

  • Amount sent
  • Shipping Date
  • Receipt Date (if known)

Recipient to register:

  • Amount received
  • Shipping Date (if known)
  • Receipt Date

Recommended traceability methods in the value chain

Traceability using pallet labelling and EDI Despatch Advice
The recommended traceability method involves labelling load carriers with GS1 labelling system combined with EDI Despatch Advice (Advance Shipping Notice(ASN)).

For products distributed through the retailer’s distribution warehouses, the industry’s unified guidelines for the identification and Distribution Units (DU) are based on GS1 standards.
To conduct traceability, each actor in the value chain must have a system that can store and process Distribution Units (DU) or logistic units with unique identifiers.

Traceability at and from sender
Each packaging level (Consumer Units (CU), Stock Keeping Units (SKU), Distribution Units (DU)) has an assigned GTIN and must include a bar code on the label.
On Consumer Unit (CU), GTIN should preferably be labelled with the EAN-13 bar code symbol.
Stock Keeping Unit (SKU) on the Distribution Unit (DU) must be labelled with an approved bar code symbology and linked to the Distribution Unit’s (DU) unique identification.
Each pallet must be labelled with one GS1-128 bar code pallet label. The label contains a unique identifier (SSCC) which enables a link between the Stock Keeping Unit (SKU) on the pallet and the batch / lot number stored in the sender’s IT systems.

If the pallet is split or changed (for example, to one Mixed pallet or Promotional Unit, it shall be identified with a new GS1-128 label and SSCC. Mixed pallets are not labelled with product information.
The product information is attached to the pallet’s SSCC by scanning each Stock Keeping Unit (SKU) when the Distribution Unit (DU) is being assembled.

Once the sender has created the connection between the Stock Keeping Unit (SKU and the Distribution Unit (DU) and secured this, the information can be used to make an EDI Despatch Advice.
The EDI Despatch Advice is then sent from the sender to the recipient of the products. The parties are identified with GLN. This provides a clear and secure identification of the parties and is central to traceability. The Despatch Advice contains all relevant product information (GTIN, batch / lot and shelf life) about the shipment, and that it ties it to each Distribution Unit (DU) using SSCC.

For shipment, the supplier scans all outgoing Distribution Units (DU) and thus has a unified link between the individual product, its associated batches and which customer receives the product. This also enables effective control of the sending of correct products to customers.

Sender sends EDI Despatch Advice to recipient at agreed time.

Traceability at receiver
When the products arrive at the recipient, each pallet will be scanned.
All Stock Keeping Units (SKU) and Distribution Unit (DU) information is received in the EDI Despatch Advice. Using the EDI Despatch Advice, the tracking information is taken care of and significantly simplifies the products receipt.
The link to the product information occurs when the recipient scans the SSCC on each Distribution Unit (DU). Here, the recipient connects information about the products (GTIN, batch and shelf life information, against the sender (GLN).

For a Standard pallet all relevant information can be scanned from the Distribution Unit (DU) labels. This ensures that correct products are received at the same time as traceability information can be linked to the individual supplier. This simplifies and ensures the sharing of proper traceability information.

Mixed pallets must be split into the warehouse, and through IT support ensure that accurate and statutory traceability information is safeguarded and connected correctly.