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"Traceability", what is it?

Definition from Wikipedia:

Traceability means “keep tracked”, it is the need to register the incoming data of the goods ( suppliers, item, batch, etc.) , of the raw material, of the finished products and the final customers list. It is the need to know what is coming inside the company and what is coming outside the company.

The purpose of the registrations is the possibility to re-construct the history of a product starting from the final consumer till to the identification of the producer and of the raw material used. To realize this purposes each operator of the production process have to fill in its registration, exceptionally for that ones is selling to the final consumer that sometime have to keep tracked what is buying or use as raw material.

The European regulation allows large fields to realize “how to organize” and “how to manage” the system of traceability ( on paper, computerized, complex, simple); the important is that it will be content what required.

In food processing (meat processing, fresh produce processing), the term traceability refers to the recording through means of barcodes or RFID tags & other tracking media, all movement of product and steps within the production process. One of the key reasons this is such a critical point is in instances where an issue of contamination arises, and a recall is required. Where traceability has been closely adhered to, it is possible to identify, by precise date/time & exact location which goods must be recalled, and which are safe, potentially saving millions of dollars in the recall process. Traceability within the food processing industry is also utilised to identify key high production & quality areas of a business, versus those of low return, and where points in the production process may be improved.

The European Union's General Food Law came into force in 2002, making traceability compulsory for food and feed operators and requiring those businesses to implement traceability systems. The EU introduced its Trade Control and Expert System, or TRACES, in April 2004. The system provides a central database to track movement of animals within the EU and from third countries. Australia has its National Livestock Identification System to keep track of livestock from birth to slaughterhouse.

India has started taking initiatives for setting up traceability systems at Government and Corporate levels.

At present only some industrial sectors have got regulatory texts related to traceability that oblige to strict behaviors. See for example aeronautics sector , pharmaceutical industry and the newest food industry (see above). Generally, the traceability will be a must for all that is pertaining the humans. Obviously the protection of company trademark traceable on each component of the produced item represent an added value in front of competitors.