Supply Scan

News and Trends from Across the Food Supply Chain

FDA's Food Protection Plan Is Underway

Fresh produce is part of a comprehensive Food Protection Plan being implemented by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It addresses safety and defense for domestic and imported product with an integrated strategy for protecting the nation's food supply.

"Consumers want the convenience of opening up a bag of salad that's already prepared, and immediately serving it," states the report. "It used to be that when a single head of lettuce was contaminated, the resulting illness affected one family.

"Now, contaminated heads of lettuce may be processed with thousands of other heads of lettuce and placed into bags of convenience salad that many consumers can buy. These bags of salad end up in thousands of homes, potentially resulting in hundreds of illnesses."

Increasingly, the numbers of susceptible consumers and the convenience factors have meant that small problems can lead to large outbreaks, according to FDA officials. Both are indications of the need to make changes to ensure a continued high level of food protection.

The Food Protection Plan operates through a set of integrated strategies that:

Focus on risks over a product's life cycle from production to consumption;
• Target resources to achieve maximum risk reduction;
• Address both unintentional and deliberate contamination;
• Use science and modern technology systems. -John Karolefski

Kroger Ends Agreement, Closes Michigan DC

Awarehouse facility leased by The Kroger Co. and operated by employees of Supervalu Inc.'s Advantage Logistics subsidiary in Livonia, MI, closed last month.

Cincinnati-based Kroger said in January that it was terminating its agreement with Advantage Logistics, a subsidiary of Supervalu, Eden Prairie, MI.

The move will put 366 employees of Advantage Logistics out of work, constituting the largest layoff in Michigan so far this year.

The Kroger-leased Livonia facility had been supplying the chain's metro Detroit stores. Kroger's contract with Advantage Logistics expired in early 2008, and the chain began moving its Michigan inventory to its Delaware, OH, facility over a year ago.

Kroger recently established a Michigan retail division, headquartered in Novi, to focus on its growth in the state.

Otis Spunkmeyer Overhauls Distribution Operations

Otis Spunkmeyer Inc. has chosen LeanLogistics' On-Demand Transportation Management System (TMS) to facilitate overhauling its distribution operations and lowering transportation spend.

Otis Spunkmeyer is using On-Demand TMS for planning, execution and settlement of its transportation processes.

"We selected LeanLogistics after a thorough review of several on-demand and server-based solutions," says Mike Mahon, director of transportation, Otis Spunkmeyer, San Leandro, CA.

"Our critical criteria were ease of implementation and user interaction, flexibility in integrating with current legacy and future ERP systems, and access to a large carrier and shipper network. LeanLogistics has met or exceeded all these criteria," says Mahon.

Holland, MI-based LeanLogistics, a division of CHEP, provides Web-native TMS.

Otis Spunkmeyer will optimize shipments using built-in routing guides, order aggregation, and carrier ratings, which will maximize service and minimize costs. Once the loads are submitted, On-Demand TMS tenders the loads to select carriers or through the Private Transportation Marketplace (Spot Market).

Otis Spunkmeyer will use WebSettle functionality to handle audits and freight payments, reducing administrative time and expense.

On-Demand TMS captures all transactions and activities, enabling Otis Spunkmeyer to mine the database of history to generate reports, make better decisions and improve the process.

Otis Spunkmeyer's distribution network includes manufacturing facilities in California, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Texas. The company also operates 52 Sales Centers throughout the country.

PLM Opens Reefer Customer Service Center

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