Collecting quality information on suppliers and products is often a labor-intensive job. Quality (all the certificates, analyses, declarations, spraylists, etc.) is gaining an increasingly prominent place at fresh produce companies. This is partly because quality assurance of the entire chain is becoming increasingly important for customers, inspectors and authorities. Thursday, May 20, a Webinar was held to explain the Agriplace Chain platform, on which quality data for the entire supply chain is collected and checked automatically.
From manual to automatic
In many companies, quality information from suppliers and products is still often maintained manually in, for example, Excel files. "An average fresh produce company that uses AgriPlace Chain manages 5000 quality information points. Without this platform, 750 hours a year can be spent on this across various departments, which results in approximately €25,000 in costs and, on top of that, companies regularly have to deal with returns because products do not meet the customer's expectations. In short. Managing quality costs more and more time, money and is essential to be able to deliver to customers," says Nico Broersen of AgriPlace.
How does it work?
AgriPlace Chain aims to provide the entire chain from grower to retailer with quality information. "Through AgriPlace Chain, quality information is collected in two ways," Nico says. "Information from suppliers is collected automatically, so suppliers can easily share quality information. AgriPlace Chain also automatically collects quality information based on identification codes like a GGN or BRC site code, because it is connected to international databases like GLOBALG.A.P. and the BRC Database. This also means that less information needs to be collected from suppliers and is automatically available in the system.
"IFS and BIO will be added in the future. As a user of the program it is not necessary for suppliers to have an account with AgriPlace Chain. The system automatically sends a request to the suppliers to supply information such as certificates, declarations and spraylists, after which they can easily supply this in the user's personalized supplier portal. The program also looks at the country of origin so that a request is sent in the right language".
Users have their say
In the webinar BerryWorld and Fairtrasa Holland talked about their experiences in using AgriPlace Chain.
Berryworld: ''AgriPlace helps us to bring together all the different branches from all over the world. This has improved productivity and food safety, because it reduces the workload, contributes to higher efficiency and reduces human error. All documents are in the same database. Because we have customers from all over the world with different needs, it is important that we can meet them. We can say that we are now 100% customer compliant," says Alejandro Solis Martinez QA manager at BerryWorld.
Wiep van Summeren, responsible for quality assurance for Fairtrasa Holland: "We import fruit from all over the world and our business model is to work with as many small-scale growers as possible in our supply chains. This requires a large-scale administration with many certificates. In the past, we did this with very large Excel files and asked our suppliers to update the files almost daily. This is a very time-consuming task and prone to human error. That's why, six months ago, we started implementing AgriPlace Chain as our 'food quality management system' and it has helped us a lot since. AgriPlace Chain automatically asks suppliers to update information and collects information from databases. In addition, we can easily share our certificates with all our customers."
"AgriPlace Chain makes it easy to search for suppliers, products and documents on different quality levels. For example, selection can be made by high-risk countries, food safety, product, company, customer compliance etc.
Costs of the system
The cost of the system is from free to €100 till €1,200 per month, depending on the size of the company and the number of users.