Food supply chain overview In the present competitive environment customers have become more demanding and asking for quality food which guarantees the safety. On time delivery is becoming a norm to reduce the inventory holding costs. The food industry is facing challenges due to increasing operational complexity, frequently changing consumer needs, government regulations and short product life cycles. It requires a very smart, efficient and agile supply chain to manage the ever changing needs of the end customers Why managing Food Supply Chain is a challenge?
The food supply chain is complex and difficult to manage due to its perishable nature and short shelf life of the products as compared to other supply chains like electronics, home needs, consumer durables etc. It also requires a robust infrastructure of warehouses and transportation network connecting suppliers, manufacturers, distributors and retailers. The complexity of food supply chain increases further because of the below mentioned parameters 1 Food safety requirements 2 Regulatory requirements 3 Short shelf life of products leading to expiry and wastage 4 Product recalls Product traceability requirements 6 Effective handling of customer complaints 7 High order frequency and low volumes Food Supply Chain categorization It is basically categorized into two broad categories Perishable and non Perishable Perishable Supply Chain In perishable supply chain the shelf life for the products is very low. It requires managing the end to end supply chain with utmost care. The perishable supply chain typically requires a cold chain to manage it properly. The cold chain infrastructure is very capital intensive.
The infrastructure consists of pre-coolers, temperature controlled warehouses, refrigerated transport etc Non- perishable Supply Chain The shelf life for the product is considerable (varying from 3-18 months). Typically FMCG/Processed products, staples etc fall under this category. Although the shelf life of the product is 3-18 months, the products falling under this category requires strict monitoring of FIFO at distributors end to ensure that the products reaching the end consumer are left with enough shelf life. What is needed to manage this unique and complex supply chain? A well organized supply chain infrastructure of warehouses and transportation covering all the major cities. 2 Sophisticated cold chain for perishable products which guarantees a cost efficient and safe delivery of products 3 Warehouse management system to ensure traceability of products and minimize the losses due to product expiry 4 State of the art warehouse infrastructure equipped with the sophisticated material handling equipments to aid cross docking, flow thru which will reduce transit times and inventory 5 Adherence to well documented GMP at the storage locations.
This would ensure food safety in storage condition ( Warehouses) 6 Vehicle tracking abilities GPS/GPRS to continuously evaluate the time to destination. Over a period of time future supply chains (FSC) has developed an expertise in managing the food supply chain in the most efficient manner. • FSC has gained and mastered art of managing the food supply chain due to its association with Food Bazaar. In house expertise to manage perishable ( Fruits and vegetables, dairy ,meat, poultry, Bakery ) and non perishable ( FMCG-Food, Staples, Processed food) • FSC has state of the art warehouses across the nation which can cater to the customized needs. • There is a strong in-house transportation department with fleet of vehicles for every need and type Availability of most advanced warehouse management system which would ensure all aspects like FIFO, Lot management, product traceability, product recalls • Availability of transport management system with vehicle tracking facilities to track product movement at every stage of transportation ( Real time visibility) • Strict adherence to standard operating procedures which ensures food safety at every stage of product handling.