The typical food transport process is often marred with challenges that may lead to physical damage, contamination, and deterioration. Here’s how to reduce risks with cold chain monitoring during food transport.
- Time, temperature, and impact are the three contributors to transit damage in food
- Lost profits and customers are the least of a company’s concerns
- Food poisoning and bacterial growth can cause human sickness
- Enhance your cold chain through monitoring with Marathon Products
Today, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) heavily emphasizes food safety and quality. Still, the food industry is currently dealing with vast challenges like time, temperature, and impact, which contribute to physical damage, contamination, and deterioration of food during transport.
The results are even more worrying, with highly reported cases of food poisoning, lost profits, and customers.
Of course, food companies are doing everything possible to reduce these risks, but a lot more is needed in investing in cold chain monitoring – a process that utilizes digital data to track the time, temperature, and impact of food throughout transportation to minimize potential problems.
So, how do you reduce risks with cold chain monitoring if you’re in the food industry? Here is a detailed guide to get started, but first, let’s outline how contributors to transit damage occur and how to enhance efficiency with Marathon Products.
The effects of time
In this case, time refers to the period food takes while in transit. Ideally, the longer it takes to get from point A to point B, the greater the chance of damage, and vice versa is true.
Items stored for too long at incorrect temperatures can become unsafe for consumption. They may also lose their flavor or nutritional value. By tracking time, businesses can ensure that their products are stored correctly at the correct temperature.
One excellent tool to use in tracking time is the MaxiLog-RH single-use. This product features an internal digital thermistor and RH sensor for accurate readings in Fahrenheit or Celsius. It also has an LCD for current temperature, RH, run times, and over-alarm conditions.
They can be preprogrammed with delayed start and high/low alarm values to ensure the highest level of accuracy. With its cutting-edge technology and design, MaxiLog-RH single-use delivers reliable results in tracking time.
The temperature in the cold chain refers to both the external environment and the internal temperature of the food itself. Fluctuations in both the external and internal temperature can cause problems.
The effects of temperature on food products depend on many factors, including the type of food, packaging, and storage conditions. For example, meat products are more sensitive to temperature fluctuations than non-meat products.
Monitoring temperature in the food industry is critical, and if you are looking for a perfect tool to get you started, the 3CTEMP-USB -200C Bluetooth Temperature Logger is ideal. This device can quickly and accurately monitor the temperature while its USB connection makes it easy to store or share data offline.
The 3CTEMP boasts an intuitive design and can monitor temperatures onsite or remotely. This temperature logger also offers an impressive range of measurements in cold chain logistics, allowing users to take accurate records.
Physical impact and its limits
Impact refers to physical damage to food items caused by jarring or shaking and can also occur if food is dropped or mishandled. These can also be due to human error or natural causes, but the consequences can be grave. For example, a poorly maintained road with potholes will lead to jarring, and in the same way, accidental mishandling of food items can cause damage.
As in the case of time and temperature, companies in the food industry can take advantage of our tools to reduce impact risks. Our EDL-XYZ is a multi-use data logger that can monitor food items during shipment and has a 3-D accelerometer that controls motion and vibration. With motion and vibration in check, potential cases of impact damage will be reduced.
The dangers to consumers and companies
Time, temperature, and impact are the three main contributors to transit damage in food. Perishable goods are particularly susceptible to these dangers, as they can quickly spoil or get damaged in seconds.
Maintaining food’s freshness, integrity, and safety is a fundamental challenge for those in the food industry. When goods are lost or damaged in transit, companies can lose profits and customers. It may even cause illness due to food poisoning if the food is contaminated or spoiled.
Food poisoning occurs when pathogenic bacteria contaminate food and someone consumes it. Usually, the symptoms of food poisoning generally depend on the type of bacteria involved. They can range from mild (e.g., stomach upset) to severe (e.g., bloody diarrhea) or even deadly (e.g., botulism).
The last thing stakeholders in the food industry want to deal with are lost profits or customers, and worse, putting consumers at risk of food poisoning and the potential fallout, such as lawsuits and a damaged reputation.
Enhance your cold chain monitoring efforts with Marathon Products
The food industry is a risky sector with a heavy burden of compliance. A single mistake can cost a company millions of dollars in terms of lost profits and customers, not to mention its reputation.
In fact, according to a report from CDC, “an estimated 48 million people in the United States fall sick from contaminated food each year,” and “recalls cost the U.S. economy about $93 billion annually.”
That’s why it’s so crucial for companies in the food industry to have a reliable cold chain monitoring and management solution in place. This way, they can minimize losses of profits and customers and, above all, ensure compliance and protect consumers.
To get the best from your cold chain monitoring efforts, you should work with a reputable and experienced provider like Marathon Products. As a leader in the cold chain industry, we understand that cold chain monitoring is key to ensuring product quality and preserving public health.
We are dedicated to offering quality products and services to companies looking to implement cold chain monitoring to minimize food industry risks during transport. So, if you are looking for cold chain monitoring solutions, please get in touch with us or go through our product lines to get started. Don’t ship without us!