An effective food industry training program is the cornerstone of a high performing food production or manufacturing facility. Providing the basic knowledge and reinforcing concepts for frontline workers are just two critically important facets of a well-thought-out training system. Here are ten ideas to round out an integrated training program and fully engage your workforce:
Some interesting news is brewing in the beverage industry. It’s hip to be healthy, and beverage companies are rushing to add nutrition-forward options to their portfolios. Whether it’s adding value to bottled water through sparkle, flavor, or “enhancements," creating old favorites with organic ingredients, offering smaller portions, or jumping on the energy drink bandwagon — all while reducing added sugar, of course — it’s clear good health has a hold on the market.
Workplace injuries are common in manufacturing jobs that depend on manual labor, and they cost the food industry billions of dollars each year. Risk factors of workplace injury include exerting excessive force, performing the same tasks repetitively, and working in awkward postures — all conditions present on the floor in food manufacturing. Damage can range in scope, from minor sprains and strains, to more serious musculo-skeletal disorders (MSDs) like tendinitis or sciatica.
It may not be edible, but packaging has a major impact on keeping food safe and displaying to customers the care with which your product is produced. Comprehensive food safety training is just as important for employees in the packaging industry as it is for those in food manufacturing facilities.
Topics: Food Safety
With foreign markets expanding, unpredictable weather patterns, and rising regulations, finding innovative ways to succeed in agriculture is more important than ever. With science of crop production becoming more sophisticated, farmers have more access to data, where they used to rely more heavily on history and intuition.
While food safety is paramount, it alone will not ensure continued sales and overall business success. The new SQF Quality Code, developed by the Safe Quality Food Institute (SQFI) includes system elements defined in the various SQF Food Safety Codes. LeAnn Chuboff, Vice President of Technical Affairs at SQFI and Bill McBride, SQFI Regional Representative, explain the value of educating food safety professionals to ensure consistent quality standards.
Topics: SQF Quality Code
We’re excited to announce that Alchemy has won a spot on the highly coveted Austin American-Statesman Top Workplaces list for the fourth year in a row! The Statesman chooses the best places to work in Austin based on data from anonymous surveys sent to current employees at eligible companies. With 140 Alchemists at our Austin headquarters (and 300 total across U.S. and Canada), Alchemy competed in the medium-sized company category.
The packaging industry faces unique safety and operational challenges. Between the threat of physical injury, safety hazards, sanitation issues, and expanding regulations, your frontline employees have a lot to manage. Addressing these concerns while maintaining high production levels will continue to test package manufacturing companies.
With the Gulf Coast still feeling the effects of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the overall damage to the U.S. food supply has yet to be determined. Hurricane Katrina was an epic catastrophe for the food supply. Case in point: North America’s oldest cold storage company, based in New Orleans, lost power for weeks and was later declared a toxic waste site.
Things are looking pretty sweet in Bakery and Snacks. Bread is back, and the sandwich is enjoying a bit of a renaissance in all its glorious forms: burgers, bahn mis, tortas, gyros. Enriched and sprouted grains are also on the rise, ensuring the low-carb craze has finally cooled off.
Research suggests that the average human attention span has shrunk to an astonishing 8.3 seconds,1 and people forget 90% of newly learned information within one week.2 Perhaps not surprisingly, 62% of food industry employees aren’t adhering to their food or workplace safety programs on the floor,3 which raises a big red flag because it increases the likelihood of safety incidents occurring. So how can we overcome this tendency to forget and boost employee knowledge retention to support correct and safe behaviors on the floor?
There’s a lot of cool things happening in refrigerated and frozen foods. Consumers are enjoying more diversified breakfasts and snacks, which means more options for frozen foods.
Protein processing may face more challenges than any other food sector. Meat and poultry account for the largest segment of U.S. agriculture, according to NAMI. With more pressures on the meat industry, it can feel like a juggling act keeping up with competing interests – animal welfare, dangerous micro-organisms, sustainability, and safety – while still meeting production goals. While it may present a challenge, it’s not impossible.
We had such good time this year at our Alchemy Engage conference! For three days, over 400 food manufacturing professionals and leaders met at the Hyatt Regency in sunny Austin, Texas, to talk about engaging workers to achieve company safety quality, and productivity goals. CEO Jeff Eastman kicked off Engage with our three big conference goals: to share best practices, network with peers, and learn new technologies.
Topics: Alchemy Conference
With the rise of global food production and trade, the food supply chain is becoming longer and more complex, which increases the requirement for food security. As global regulations change and consumer demands increase, products need to satisfy a greater number of food security or food safety requirements. Here are a few ways science can help tackle these risks:
Topics: Food Safety