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February 24, 2010

Progressive Grocer (HM)

Progressive Grocer

by Meg Major | February 24, 2010

"Traceability has been a front-and-center issue for produce trading partners for the past four years. But a series of high-profile recalls, both inside and outside the produce domain, has turned traceability into one the most significant industry issues since the birth of scanning in 1974.

While the produce sector has for the most part single-handedly led the charge, the need for harmonized traceability standards applies to far more than fruit and vegetables. The industry needs a uniform, all-encompassing system that can be easily activated in the event of a product recall, built on a platform that elevates transparency, improves operational efficiencies, enhances communication and increases trust in brands throughout the store.

The good news for the grocery industry at large is that the produce industry's leading trade groups — the United Fresh Produce Association (United Fresh), the Produce Marketing Association (PMA) and the Canadian Produce Marketing Association (CPMA) — have already expended untold amounts of time, resources and sweat equity crafting, facilitating and executing a blueprint for new traceability measures for the fresh produce supply chain via the Produce Traceability Initiative (PTI). Unveiled in October 2008, the PTI's detailed action plan aims to move the supply chain to a common standard for electronic traceability by the end of 2012."

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