Cool Chain Association member Challenge Group completes first technical committee project trialling new label for perishables

Members of Cool Chain Association (CCA) Technical Committee Programme have completed the first stage of a project to trial a new label for perishables shipments, driven by Challenge Group.

The results were discussed at the CCA’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Perishables event last week in Rome, Italy, where a launch Risk Management Programme tracking asparagus consignments was also announced.

The label trial, undertaken by handlers and warehouse operators, tested the benefits of using a new label, including details of both commodity and temperature requirements on packaging for perishables shipments between Belgium and Israel over the last three months.

Under current regulations for perishables shipments, commodity must be indicated on packaging, but temperature range is either not indicated or indicated on a second label, potentially leading to temperature deviation errors.

“During both acceptance and storage, the new label helped avoid temperature deviations, as well as avoiding time-consuming activities such as checking documents,” said Israel Amsterdamer, Vertical Operations Manager, Challenge Group, who project-managed the trial.

“Feedback from participants was largely positive, but there were concerns around the costs involved in developing the new labels and additional implications related to the revision of the process flow.

“Challenge Group and CCA see the bigger picture – solving a very real problem, saving costs in the long run, and playing an important part in stopping food loss.”

The trial was the first milestone completed under the CCA’s Technology Committee Programme, which is part of a broader project to facilitate perishable identification and handling, with the mission to improve quality in the cool supply chain.

“With this trial we have started a process to explore a solution to a specific problem and we will now move onto next steps to further align industry best practices and stakeholder needs with international requirements and legislation” said Nicola Caristo, Secretary General of the CCA and Senior Quality Manager, SkyCell.

“CCA is perfectly placed to drive this sort of project because we are a neutral platform involving all stakeholders.

“We want to move away from a top-down approach and instead encourage collaboration to drive change.”

Within the ongoing CCA Risk Management project, the decision to continue with the analysis of different trade lanes and products and in particular with the transportation of asparagus was also announced at the meeting by CCA Board Member Eric Mauroux.

CCA’s Risk Management Committee members, who include Able Freight, TIVE, Nature’s Pride, SMARTCAE and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) will plan and test the movement of asparagus from Peru and the USA to Europe, initially in a virtual environment.

For more information:
Ebele Nwakude
Cool Chain Association Challenge Group

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