Our Newsletter:
Traceability Insider

August 2014
How Digitization is About to Change the Rules of Your Business

June 2014
Food Waste, We are Fed Up, and a Gladson Case Study

May 2014
Ag Tech and the Power of Catchy Criticism

March 2014
Labels are Soooo 1990, “Thorny” food labeling law

January 2014
Oxymoronic Grocery Predictions and Big Data for the Produce Industry

December 2013
The Gift of Growing – Helping Kids Get Their Hands Dirty!

November 2013
Produce Brand Strategy, Visibility and Transparency

September 2013
A "Lean" Supply Chain, Knowing your Shopper

April 2013
Food Waste, The Rolling Stones, Raley's, and Tanimura & Antle

March 2013
First Look! FDA Releases IFT Traceability Report and Lessons from Europe's Horsemeat Crisis Every Fresh Food Brand Should Learn

January 2013
What Does the Future Hold?

September 2012
"Locale" Produce and Reducing the Impact of Recalls

January 2012
Making the Case for Traceability

September 2011
GTINs – the Devil Is in the Details

August 2011
Turbocharge Mobile Marketing with HarvestMark and QR Codes

May 2011
Traceability Insider

January 2011
It's a New Year. What's the latest on PTI?

May 2010
HarvestMark Makes its VoiceCode™ Solution Open Source

December 2009
IFT Publishes Traceability Report for FDA

Holiday Issue 2009
What Happened at the FDA/USDA Hearing on Food Traceability

September 2009
Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food

August 2009
How to Avoid Synching Without Trace

July 2009
What's the Value of PTI?

May 2009
Case-Level and Item-Level Traceability-What You Need to Know

April 2009
Still Have Questions about PTI? Don't Worry, You're Not Alone

March 2009
PTI, GS1, GTIN, GLN? HarvestMark's Got the FAQs

January 2009
The First PTI Milestone is Around the Corner

December 2008
A Pivotal Year for Food Safety

November 2008
FDA Solicits Public Comment on Enhanced Produce Traceability

October 2008
Produce Traceability Initiative Action Plan Released

September 2008
How Will Greater Transparency Enhance Your Business?

Español - 01 2012
Elaborando el Caso para Trazabilidad

Español - 03 2012
La Más Reciente Norma de la FDA es Efectiva Inmediatamente. ¿Debería Usted Estar Preocupado?

August 2013
How Walmart Could Implement PTI, Crowdsourced Shopper Insights

June 2010
How to Interpret the PTI announcement of "Goal Unchanged, Milestones Adjusted"

December 2010
An Update on the PTI

July 2010
Produce Traceability in Foodservice

February 2010
What's Going on with the PTI

March 2010
Consumer Attitudes to Traceability

August 2010
HarvestMark Launches Consumer Campaign in Portland, OR

March 2011
Have you heard of the PLU DataBar Initiative?

November 2011
Traceability? There’s an App for That

December 2012
It’s all new. Introducing HarvestMark 2013.

March 2012
The FDA's Latest Ruling is Effective Immediately. Should You be Worried?

June 2012
Do QR Codes REALLY Drive Shopper Engagement?

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August 2013: How Walmart Could Implement PTI, Crowdsourced Shopper Insights

How Walmart could implement PTI … without scanning a single barcode

Walmart recently announced that they would require all produce suppliers to comply with the produce traceability initiative (PTI).

Some critics immediately flagged the field – protesting that because Walmart doesn’t yet have the ability to scan every case, it’s not fair to make suppliers add traceability labels.  But, here’s how Walmart (or any retailer) could completely implement the PTI without scanning a single PTI barcode.

A retailer can take advantage of two innovations to eliminate the need to scan barcodes in all but the most exceptional circumstances.

First, the retailer requires their suppliers to use Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) to send the GTIN, Lots and quantities of every pallet of product – linked to a pallet identifier, such as an SSCC (Serialized Shipping Container Code).  That way, when a truck arrives at the DC, the retailer simply confirms the pallet numbers on the load against the EDI transaction – and the GTIN, Lot and Quantity information will flow into the retailer’s Warehouse Management System (WMS) along with the put away locations.

So far, no case scanning required – unless the supplier doesn’t use EDI, in which case they can scan the Hybrid Pallet Tag (HPT).

Second, the retailer can use its voice picking system to determine which cases are being sent to particular stores.  When an associate builds an outbound pallet of mixed cases, they simply confirm the 2 or 4 digit Voice Pick Code verbally as they pick the cases.  The WMS can then accurately infer which GTIN/Lot was selected.

Again, no barcodes were scanned – unless the supplier has failed to put a Voice Pick Code on the label (in which case it wouldn’t be in compliance with the PTI).

You can get more details of how and why the Voice Pick Code works here.

What Makes A Shopper Buy A Product Again?

Dumb question, right? It’s the combination of freshness, flavor and good value that keeps them coming back. Or because they are trying to eat healthier, and found out that your product is a great match for them. Or was it because they remember your brand and the product looked enticing in the store? Or they loved a gluten-free recipe that your website had provided. Maybe they are price sensitive, and only buy when there’s a promotion? Or they need the product to last until the end of the week – and found that yours has good shelf life? Suddenly, it’s obvious that what drives a shopper to become loyal to a produce brand is not … obvious.

This is an ideal application for crowdsourcing. Crowdsourcing uses the concept of the wisdom of crowds to answer questions and get tasks completed. Questions that are impractical to solve experimentally, can often be easily answered by spreading the task across hundreds, or thousands of individuals.

HarvestMark has something awesome cooking … if you’re interested in getting a unique perspective on what shoppers are thinking about your product – drop us a line and get a sneak peek.