n the food and beverage industry, there are many challenges for businesses when it comes to meeting regulatory obligations. In Australia, food safety regulations affect every stage of food and beverage production – from processing to distribution. Businesses must comply with these regulations to retain certifications and maintain customer satisfaction levels. But legislation and standards can change and following these updates can become difficult without proper management.

The importance of following regulations

Regulations can originate from federal, state, or local levels, and may differ across a single network. In addition, these regulations affect all levels of a business, so complying means keeping track of all departments and personnel.

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) creates and manages the Food Standards Code, which applies to all businesses in the food and beverage industry. These standards outline requirements such as labelling, product standards for genetically modified foods, and health and hygiene obligations.

Despite these strict regulations, food safety issues are still a concern in Australia, with approximately 4.1 million cases of food poisoning every year.

Now more than ever, consumers are concerned about what goes into their food and how their food is made, from what ingredients are used, whether products contain allergens, or how a product is grown or made.

Transparency from food and beverage companies is important to keep up with regulations and continue providing quality products for consumers.

It’s not just concerns around ingredients and allergens, but also ethical and environmental concerns. Consumers want to know their food is made safely, sustainably and ethically.

Regulations and standards can change overtime with new legislation, science or consumer behaviour so it is important to follow these updates to ensure consistent compliance.

Failing to follow regulations can result in severe legal and financial consequences, such as product recalls, reinspections, lost production time, reputational and brand damage, lost customers, and litigation.

Food safety is managed using the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) methodology. HACCP is a preventative system for monitoring food safety and risk assessment through the analysis and control of biological, chemical, and physical hazards throughout every step in the supply chain.

HACCP provides a framework for companies to produce foods safely and to prove to auditors they were made safely by mitigating measures at critical points.

But it can be difficult for businesses to manage all their compliance-related activities. That is where work management software (WMS) can come in.

Managing regulatory compliance with a WMS

A WMS can provide a food and beverage business with tools needed to ensure they meet their regulatory requirements by streamlining tracking and reporting processes.

This ensures issues are identified earlier and linked back to the source, providing adequate records for auditors.

Businesses can stay informed on regulatory obligations and avoid the consequences of failing to follow food safety regulations. Using a WMS drives continuous improvements in operations, helps identify trends, reduces costs, and increases customer satisfaction.

These management systems provide accurate, up-to-date and comprehensive information which can trace issues to their source and respond to incidents quickly.

In terms of the food and beverage industry, a management system can help ensure contractors and suppliers are meeting a business’s standards, when it comes to food production.

Without real-time updates and data collection from a WMS, businesses remain reactive to risk management – constantly catching up as issues arise – which can prevent improvement and efficiency.

Incorporating a WMS into your organisation provides a single authoritative data source which can be used across business practices when making decisions and completing tasks. Staff are alerted to possible hazards or incidents in real-time, which allows for rapid response.

Data can be maintained in the system to update missing or potentially inaccurate information, which can help with compliance and internal audits by making your business accountable. Especially as regulations change, having up-to-date information on food safety and production makes sure every aspect of your business is instilling standards uniformly.

With better organisation-wide communication, a WMS also frees up human resources to redirect to other priorities and for the whole business to meet organisational goals.

But choosing the right WMS can make the difference for your business, especially one that can be configured to meet your business’s needs.
Where Xugo can help

Xugo is a cloud-based WMS which has been designed to connect workplace teams and processes, enabling businesses run smoothly, particularly in relation to compliance with regulations.

Xugo ensures consistency across all processes and levels of an organisation when it comes to following food and beverage safety standards and policies.

Developed by SFI Allegro, Xugo is software-as-a-service (SaaS). SFI has been developing work management and compliance control software solutions for over 25 years, for organisations of all sizes.

Xugo can be tailored to your business needs with a suite of capabilities available.

With Xugo you can access insights needed to take actions, implement programs and meet regulatory requirements. For a workforce, this can create an easy-to-use plan as work cases and tasks can be assigned and managed in a schedule.

By visualising work progress, Xugo creates a comprehensive database for all employees, local and remote. Inspections, audits, tasks, incidents, maintenance history, investigations, analysis, sample collections, and lab results can all be collated in the same system.

Xugo can be used across an entire organisation, from senior management, to consumer relations, and the factory floor, ensuring all levels are complying consistently and effectively.

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