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What’s All This Talk about Huddle Talks?

Posted by Holly Mockus

Apr 28 2016
Apr 28 2016


It doesn’t matter what you call them – huddle talks, tailgate talks, pre-shift meetings, team meetings, stand up meetings, etc. – they all play a critical role in setting up high performing teams for success.  They may be short and sweet ‘chats’ but they pack a punch in helping to navigate the complexities encountered during each production day.  It is also an awesome opportunity to reinforce workplace safety, food safety, and quality requirements

Here are a few tips for conducting an effective huddle talk.

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Topics: Operations

The Distribution Chain – The Upside to the Sanitary Transport Rule

Posted by Holly Mockus

Apr 8 2016
Apr 8 2016


The final FSMA Sanitary Transportation Rule will be changing the supply chain as we now know it.  With increasing responsibility being placed on the business relationships between shippers, loaders, carriers, and receivers, we will be seeing contracts rewritten to spell out responsibilities for things like trailer and tanker cleanliness, temperature control and monitoring, and required documentation.

The transportation industry will be getting a taste of regulatory food safety requirements that will reverberate throughout the supply chain. The upside for the food industry is plentiful and includes:

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Topics: Food Safety, Operations

Communications to Change Behavior

Posted by Jeff Moores

Mar 11 2016
Mar 11 2016
Has this happened to you?

You are a manager and you care about the people that you lead.  You’ve invested a significant amount of money annually to train your employees but when an accident happens you wonder why they didn’t do what they were trained to do.  Then you start thinking, “I showed them the proper way to do this. Why did they cut corners?” That’s a good question, but you may not like the answer. 

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Topics: Operations

How to Define and Integrate your Safety Brand: 4 Key Pillars to Success

Posted by Ric Agostini

Feb 29 2016
Feb 29 2016

You’ve trained your workers in the classroom. You’ve even modeled how to perform a task safely on the floor, but accidents still keep happening. What else can you do to help your employees understand just how important it is to follow safety policies and procedures? How can you keep safety top of mind and reduce injuries?

Engaging your frontline workers is the key to driving a positive safety culture and increasing worker performance. Numerous strategies have been launched to engage workers over the years, but choosing the right approach is not as easy as you’d think. Establishing the best approach for your organization must be based on current culture, logistical opportunities, and identified gaps in both worker and leadership knowledge.

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Topics: Operations, Workplace Safety

5 Ways for the Food Industry to Avoid Criminal Liability: Lessons from Peanut Corporation of America

Posted by Tara Guthrie

Jan 7 2016
Jan 7 2016
In 2015, a federal judge shook the food industry when he sentenced three executives from the Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) to serve hard jail time for their role in 2008-2009’s Salmonella outbreak. The landmark decision set a legal precedent that has not only shaped the way the FDA now approaches its own investigations, but also leaves food industry professionals open to criminal liability. Executives and plant management could pay a hefty price.
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Topics: Food Safety, Operations

Managing the High Cost of Turnover – Perspectives from 2015 NAMI Outlook Conference

Posted by Wes Burke

Nov 18 2015
Nov 18 2015

I recently had the opportunity to spend time in our nation’s capital with many prominent leaders from the meat industry at the North American Meat Institute Outlook Conference. One area of focus for the conference was helping attendees understand the future of labor in the meat industry.

Did you know the average cost of turnover for a firm of 100 employees exceeds $400,000 per year?! Because of the impact, the Meat Institute welcomed us to share data from Alchemy’s Mind of the Food Worker Survey (#MOFWstudy). My presentation featured strategies that encompass employee total well-being using Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

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Topics: Operations

Rules of Engagement: How to Create a Culture of Productivity

Posted by Wes Burke

Oct 20 2015
Oct 20 2015

A recent Gallup poll showed that over 77% of manufacturing workers are disengaged in their work. This disengagement directly affects safety, quality, yield, and productivity in your organization. Additionally, the estimated cost of turnover for a firm of 100 employees creeps up on $500,000 annually. So, it's more crucial than ever for companies to learn how to positively influence employee behaviors and attitudes. 

To be successful, companies must understand how front-line workers learn, what motivates them to follow safety procedures, and how they best engage with supervisors and managers to build and maintain a culture that allows for continuous improvement. 

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Topics: Operations

IAFP Conference: Observing the Future of Food Safety Education

Posted by Holly Mockus

Aug 10 2015
Aug 10 2015

I recently attended the annual IAFP (International Association of Food Protection) conference in Portland, OR. I can honestly say this conference really improves each year. Portland was a beautiful city to host this event and the wide variety of topics discussed did not disappoint. From the latest in research, to food fraud to sanitary design, to recent industry events, to updates on regulation – there was an abundance of information to stimulate the mind of every stakeholder in attendance.

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Topics: Operations

Employee Appreciation Starts with Knowledge

Posted by Holly Mockus

May 29 2015
May 29 2015

In honor of employee appreciation month, I’d like to share what I’ve found to be the greatest gift of appreciation in almost any occupation – knowledge.

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Topics: Operations

How Kisko Products Saved $500,000 in Operations

Posted by Tara Guthrie

May 19 2015
May 19 2015

As global demands on the food supply continue to climb, it is more important than ever for food companies to reduce waste. Of course we all know it's important to preserve the environment, but not everyone understands that reducing waste is also an excellent means of maximizing profit margins.

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Topics: Food Safety, Operations

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