Towards enhanced traceability in the animal protein food system in South Africa

Date: 07 October 2020

Traceability standards are instruments used to foster the efficiency of vertical relationships within supply chains. Traceability requirements in Information Systems Development are critical to enable digital record keeping procedures that show the path of a particular unit or batch of products, ingredients from supplier to consumers. Food traceability is a cornerstone of the increasingly complex, industrialized and global food system. It is one of the most important tools used by producers and manufacturers to track items for supply-chain management purposes and for clients in the event of a recall. Before designing an information system of traceability, one must identify the different characteristics and critical events that need to be traced throughout the various steps in the processing chain.

Recently, traceability has gained significant importance as it allows efficient identification, correction or removal of risk factors throughout the process in order to deliver safe and quality products to consumers. Traceability is eventually used to ascertain origin and ownership of livestock and agriculture products. It is an economic policy instrument being used to assist countries meet their objectives of controlling, surveillance, biosecurity protection of the national livestock population, preventing and eradicating animal diseases and to deter fraud, theft and misrepresentation of live animals. Increasingly, public health concerns are demanding that suppliers and consumers should be able to identify the origins of a food product.

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