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


The FDA published an Interim Final Rule (IFR) this week, that is effective immediately. It expands the scope of the records that the FDA (or its agents) can demand from a grower/shipper/retailer. Here's what you need to know:

  • From the time of an official request, you must make information available as soon as possible. The deadline is within 24 hours.
  • Records can be requested from up to 2 years in the past. This makes reliable electronic storage a necessity of any traceability program.
  • The FDA must be able to identify the immediate previous sources (one-back) and immediate subsequent recipients of food (one-up) based on your records.
  • The FDA can now request records for food that is not directly subject to a recall. It also can request food that it has "reasonable belief" of contamination. The FDA can also require copies of "complaint and adverse event records" and recall records in addition to your traceability information.
  • The FDA can only request access to information. However, the penalty for denying access can be pretty stiff. The FDA can: 
    • Suspend your facility's registration, preventing you from importing, exporting or selling food
    • Detain or seize the food
    • Issue a mandatory recall order for the food (for which you may be charged)
    • Initiate civil or criminal action

Here's the good news:

If you use the HarvestMark PTI solution, you're compliant with trace back requirements. The HarvestMark secure servers also take care of your data storage, back up, and failover needs. Even better, HarvestMark makes all of your packers' data automatically available on one platform, even if they are not integrated into your ERP system. Finally, any product complaints received using the HarvestMark feedback feature are securely stored for fast reporting for the FDA or otherwise.

If you've implemented the HarvestMark Hybrid Pallet Tag solution, you are also compliant with the trace-forward aspect of this new rule. Given a date range, Lot number, or pallet ID number, the HarvestMark solution returns the required information instantly from a secure web portal or our iPad app.

Have a question about the rule or Hybrid Pallet Tag? Contact us by email give us a call at 650.264.6200.

Here's the full text of the IFR for your reference.

The Return on Investment of PTI Compliance Just Got Better

There's been a lot of hand waving about the ROI (or lack thereof) from PTI compliance from various corners of the industry. Until recently, it's been focused on the benefits of quick response to a recall. However one of our customers, JemD Farms, is now leveraging data captured by their HarvestMark PTI solution into insights that drive sales and profits. JemD Farms provides a great example of the real insights that the HarvestMark PTI solution can deliver, even before retailers are scanning cases at DCs.

Each day, the HarvestMark system brings together production and traceability data from across JemD’s farms and distribution centers to provide users with on-demanddashboards that deliver insights about production and in-transit product. Using a PC or an iPad, JemD users can see the volume of inbound product by packer, identify the origin of any lot, and analyze historic production trends. Using these HarvestMark business intelligence tools, JemD Farms provides their sales desks with several days advanced notice of inbound product, allowing teams to optimize their sales motions, support adplanning, and give retailers better product visibility.

As Adrian Abbott, Director of Operations at JemD Farms points out, “We’ve been committed to PTI from the outset, but viewed it as pure cost. Using the HarvestMark business intelligence tools, we’re able to capture enterprise value from our traceability program.”

For more information on how HarvestMark has helped JemD realize value through traceability, read the JemD press release.