U.S – As the food industry continues to face significant, simultaneous crises, including labor shortages, inflation, product shortages, supply chain disruptions, an ongoing war overseas, and climate change putting food production at risk, technology leader RizePoint gives insights on what to expect come 2023.
“As we continue to face serious threats to our food supply, food businesses should be mindful of key trends and predictions for 2023.
“In the coming year, we should be focusing on sustainable food production, prioritizing DEI, training differently, and relying on digital solutions that can help boost transparency, accuracy, safety, and quality. Luckily, tech solutions have become more affordable and accessible for food businesses of all sizes,” Kari Hensien, RizePoint CEO, predicts.
Since climate change is putting food production at risk, Kari says there will be a renewed effort around sustainable food production, like vertical farming, hydroponics, and aquaponics.
He notes that quality and accuracy will be the goal of every business.
“Quality and accuracy are king To make your customers feel valued and appreciated, get their orders right! Implement solutions to boost accuracy, which will elevate a variety of critical metrics, including improved customer satisfaction and loyalty, increased revenue, positive reviews, word-of-mouth recommendations, etc,” he says.
According to him, digital solutions will become more affordable and widely used pointing out that digital efforts don’t have to break the bank.
He advises businesses to organize supplier certifications and streamline supplier collaboration in the process so as to gain visibility and identify/predict the operational improvements that will maximize business success.
Due to the major concurrent crises faced by the food industry, including production delays, food shortages, and extreme weather impacting crops, food businesses will have to work hard to keep the lights on and deliver products (and promises) to customers.
Kari also predicts a rise in workplace accountability.
“Moving forward, organizations will need to prioritize broader social accountability. This includes a focus on hiring a diverse workforce to ensure your products and services are being delivered by people that represent your increasingly diverse customer base.
“Now more than ever, treating employees fairly and equitably is key to securing a knowledgeable, stable, and productive workforce,” he says.
In addition, there will be a shift in the training process.
“Historically, food businesses trained employees by explaining how things should be done. But what if you thought about training differently? Train, practice, demonstrate and reinforce to boost employee confidence and retention. Encourage employees to ask questions, seek feedback, and feel empowered. Create a collaborative culture vs. a punitive one,” adds the industry expert.
The supply chain is also expected to become more transparent thanks to more affordable, accessible tech tools that will enable brands of all sizes and budgets to seamlessly manage their vendors’ safety and quality assurance certifications.
Consumers will embrace the hybrid model. Customers have become accustomed to the hybrid of in-person, pickup, and delivery, so food businesses need to excel at all these models, focusing on safety and accuracy for each.
Operational data and programs will gain credibility in the Board Room and there will be increased demand for remote brand protection.
“A growing number of companies are looking for ways to protect their locations and/or facilities if they can’t physically reach them for audits or inspections.
“Maybe it’s a travel issue to that area or maybe it’s cost prohibitive, but tech solutions can save quality teams as much as 70%, which is a huge win at a time when every dollar counts,” Kari says.
RizePoint creates technology that enables users to audit, evaluate outcomes, and choose whether or not corrective measures are necessary.
Its top-of-the-line solution increases visibility, accuracy, and productivity and is comprehensive, user-friendly, and all-inclusive.
One such solution is its supplier certification management-focused Ignite platform, which was introduced last year.