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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Learn what's happening in the world of traceability and beyond in our monthly Traceability Insider. Subscribe today to get the latest news on HarvestMark as well as commentary, insight and information on the latest issues and trends impacting the industry.

January 2013: What Does the Future Hold?

At HarvestMark, we thought we’d start the New Year by looking at what the future may hold for the produce industry. The FDA rules that will go into effect in the near future should cause alignment on processes and practices and we see the first signs of bigger trends that will come to reshape the industry over the next decade.


The Produce Industry in 2020

The produce industry has seen dramatic change in the last decade. Retailers have experienced a sea-change in the way people shop, how they choose their products as well as who and what influences their decisions. The supply chain is beginning to use data analysis to improve forecasting, pricing, and inventory management. Traceability technology is enabling fresh food suppliers and retailers to understand the drivers of the product experience for their customers and reduce waste. Social media has enabled produce suppliers to build followership for their brands for the first time. These trends are the tip of the iceberg – and harbingers of much bigger changes ahead.

Proposed FDA rules

The 600 pages of proposed rules by the FDA are just the first wave of rulemaking required by the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) signed in 2011. These first set of rules reflect the desire for the FDA and - by their influence - the industry to become more proactive in the prevention of potential contamination of the US food supply. The proposed rules increase the specificity of the rules and gives the FDA more power to enforce them once they go into effect.

So how will this affect the average farm? Controversially, small growers - estimated to be 80% of total farms in the US – are exempt. But this number is misleading – they produce only 2% of the food supply. Over 98% of produce grown by volume is produced by larger enterprises, and is therefore covered under new produce safety rules. We expect many large growers are already conforming or exceeding the proposed rules. Most have a formal food safety plan in place and are complying with commodity-specific safety standards. This should make the impact, financial and logistical, less burdensome for the industry.

While traceability – our domain of expertise – is not covered in this set of rulemaking (those are expected later); we have collected some of the better summaries of these new rules for you from Food Safety News, and The Los Angeles Times.

The FDA is accepting comments on the rules for four months. After that, some form of them will become law. It remains unclear whether Congress will give the FDA the funds necessary to adequately enforce the rules, but at least now the industry knows where the goalposts are.


Mobile Marketing – A Great Addition to Your 2013 Marketing Plan

Now that 9 out of 10 Americans own a cell phone and over half of those are smartphones, the ability to market to the mobile shopper has gone mainstream. QR Codes and interactive, mobile-optimized pages are delivering shopper engagement and loyalty for fresh food brands and retailers … when done right.

With years of mobile marketing experience and one of the top food Apps on the market, HarvestMark has the expertise to help you go mobile quickly, painlessly, and cost-effectively. Drop us a line to find out how HarvestMark Connect can help you use mobile marketing to grow sales and solicit feedback for as little as $500 a year.

Check out HarvestMark Connect.