How COVID-19 is challenging and changing medtech supply chain management By Maria Rachal • July 27, 2020 Four experts share insights on the supply and demand hangups medtech companies have been working through during the pandemic, and a few early takeaways the industry can carry forward. These guidelines were developed recognizing that these establishments and their operations are critical (PDF, 796 KB) to the security of the nation’s food supply. The DHL study suggests that food and beverage supply chain professionals in the short term can adhere to the regulatory mandates of health professionals, including reduced staff and social distancing guidelines and take advantage of intelligence monitoring tools to stay abreast of new virus outbreaks … A: Currently, there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with imported goods and there are no reported cases of COVID-19 in the United States associated with imported goods. FSIS in-plant personnel who are ill with COVID-19 or any other illness will be excluded from work activities that could create unsanitary conditions (coughing or sneezing on product). FSIS will keep the lines of communication open so we can address the evolving situation. And we need to forego our ideas that there are “staples” that fit everyone’s pantry – “one size fits all” only works for ponchos. A report late last month from Resilience360 found that the shutdown of manufacturing plants, changing consumer behaviors and price increases have altered F&B supply chains, at least in the near … Contingency plans focused on labor are just now being launched. USDA strongly recommends establishments utilize the recommendations highlighted in the guidance document where practical, recognizing that how they are implemented may differ given the unique circumstances of establishments and processing facilities nationwide. A: Yes, and FSIS will follow state and local health department decisions. In addition to providing safe and nutritious food for American families, the agricultural sector also accounts for roughly one-fifth of our nation’s economy. A: Public health and food safety experts do not have any evidence to suggest that COVID-19 can be transmitted by food or food packaging. Ultimately, forecasting has been the backbone that keeps supply-chains intact and provides solutions to timely fulfillment. Everyone needs to share their data. Sharing information across competitive lines, leveraging technology across all touch points of the supply-chain and piloting innovative sharing hubs, will build a stronger food ecosystem for all. I know I’m not the only one trying to “read the tea leaves.” One thing I believe all of us in the food business can agree on though, is that the impending supply-chain disruption that we’ve been beating around the bush about is here now. As the global coronavirus pandemic accelerates, the hoarding of food continues across the country impacting all retail outlets and reaching into all product categories. A radical 10-year recovery plan for the UK food system should draw on local and community responses to the Covid-19 crisis to create a more diverse, sustainable and fairer supply chain, say experts. At the same time, my years of C-Suite leadership experience at McCormick & Co., Cargill, Jones Dairy Farm, Kraft and at the National Restaurant Association, have also provided me with a comprehensive and unique perspective on what moves food companies to success or failure. FSIS is prepared to be operationally nimble and to use all administrative means and flexibilities available to protect the health and safety of employees based on local public health recommendations. Let’s Refocus Agri-Food Tech To Solve Today’s Critical Problems, Adapt Or Die: Molson Coors Turns To Partnerships, Non-Alcoholic Beverages For Growth, Brewers, Winemakers And Distillers Have A Little-Known Reason To Cheer Federal Covid Relief, New Napa Treasures From Cuvaison And Brandlin, Consumer Companies Are Accelerating Investments In Regenerative Agriculture To Combat Climate Change, Autonomous Food Delivery Predictions For 2021 And Beyond, A Grocery Revival? FSIS has delayed both U.S. and foreign country audits in accordance with the State Department’s guidance. Nestlé CEO Mark Schneider warns that the business must ‘get ready for the storm’ as supply chain challenges are expected to intensify amid the global coronavirus pandemic. Kraft-Heinz stock was actually downgraded to “junk” last month and they are seeking a $4 billion credit line  (KH$4BillionLineCredit) to operate. Refrigerate or freeze meat, poultry, eggs, seafood, and other perishables—like berries, lettuce, herbs, and mushrooms—within 2 hours of purchasing. A: Currently there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. Because the chain relies predominantly on human labor, the supply chain … I would imagine that Amazon’s January 1, 2020 announcement of healthcare benefit cuts for more than 1,800 part-time employees is also most likely being reevaluated. Q: Are those working in the agricultural sector considered Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Labor (DOL) have issued guidance specific to the meat and poultry processing industry in order to facilitate ongoing operations and support the food supply, while also mitigating the risk of spreading COVID-19. Our Food & Drink Editor Daniel Woolfson sits down with Meatless Farm founder Morten Toft Bech to discuss how coronavirus has influenced the booming plant-based category For canned goods, remember to clean lids before opening. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19 (PDF, 591 KB) that includes information on how a COVID-19 outbreak could affect workplaces and steps all employers can take (PDF, 1.1 MB) to reduce workers' risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19). The call for calm and assurances that there’s plenty of supply has not eased consumer’s anxiety over having their favorite perishable and non-perishable brands. Do NOT use this solution or other disinfecting products on food. COVID-19 Threatens Food Supply Chain As Farms Worry About Workers Falling Ill COVID-19 has turned one end of the food industry — stores and restaurants — on its head. However, it is always important to follow good hygiene practices (i.e., wash hands and surfaces often, separate raw meat from other foods, cook to the right temperature, and refrigerate foods promptly) when handling or preparing foods. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites. FSIS has a plan and authority to address staffing considerations and is prepared to act accordingly. More information about how the virus spread is available from the CDC (www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/transmission.html). ... COVID-19 and APAC's food and … We need to think about what happens if a sizable percentage of food manufacturers, suppliers, and restaurants close down for good. This may result in requests to delay or divert deliveries or provide other flexibilities. It appears clear that consumers are moving beyond the cleaners, sanitizers, and paper good aisles. On April 26, 2020, the CDC and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued interim guidance specific to the meat and poultry processing industry in order to facilitate ongoing operations and support the food supply, while also mitigating the risk of spreading COVID-19. Additionally, currently there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. A proud Greek-American immigrant doing business around the world, with a passion for mentoring entrepreneurs at the Endeavor Global incubator, I’m living the American Dream...bringing you provocative perspective from inside the food industry. There may be several that face potential bankruptcies if they push too hard. The fragility of our food and drink supply chains has been laid bare thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. It is important to follow food safety practices when handling groceries to prevent foodborne illness: For more information on safe handling of groceries, visit the FDA's website here: www.fda.gov/food/food-safety-during-emergencies/shopping-food-during-covid-19-pandemic-information-consumers. COVID-19 has tested even the most sophisticated forecasting technology, imagine how coocoo crazy proprietary algorithms are going right now trying to figure out demand projections and plan manufacturing schedules. The UAE has a relatively smooth supply chain and an absence of obstacles, particularly when it comes to transporting goods whether by air, land or sea. The vast size of China’s food production and consumption make its food supply and food safety issues When we first discussed a Food Safety Insights article about supply chain issues, the focus of the article was intended to review supply chain management and control, supplier verification, the Foreign Supplier Verification Program, and similar topics. A: There are no nationwide shortages of food, although in some cases the inventory of certain foods at your grocery store might be temporarily low before stores can restock. Meat, poultry, and processed egg inspection services, including export certification services, continue as normal. CDC is recommending the voluntary use of cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain, especially in areas of significant community-based transmission. FSIS is working to prioritize inspection at establishments based on local conditions and resources available. A: According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are simple steps you can take to protect yourself from COVID-19 when you have groceries or food delivered. This reality is being neglected as forecasting models are tweaked and re-tweaked to accommodate the current nontraditional demand. The same sanitary procedures that establishments are already following to protect food safety will also help prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses like COVID-19. All of our programs, including SNAP, WIC, and the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs, have flexibilities and contingencies built-in to allow us to respond to on-the-ground realities and take action as directed by Congress. Unpack groceries as soon as you get home. A food shortage after the Covid-19 crisis should see local produce prioritised, an academic says. The effects of demand‐side shocks on food supply chains are discussed, including consumer panic buying behaviors with respect to key items, and the sudden change in consumption patterns away from the food … In a video message delivered to Nestlé’s global workforce, the chief executive of the world’s largest food and beverage company said it is … Steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 should remain in place throughout the pandemic and to the extent that companies must reduce or alter capacity, split shifts, or add additional processing days to implement the CDC and DOL recommendations. At a time like the one we find ourselves in, it’s going to be extremely challenging for these larger food manufacturers to place more stress on their businesses by quickly filling orders and pushing supply-chains to deliver – particularly over the next four to six critical weeks across the country. The stress on the supply-chain will disrupt it forever. In food production/processing facilities and retail food establishments, an evaluation should be made to identify and implement operational changes that increase employee separation. Consumers will quickly tire of all the rice, pasta, beans and canned goods they’ve hoarded, and move to heavy replenishing of their particular favorites. Turns out once you turn off the milk, it’s pretty difficult to turn it back on. All FSIS-regulated establishments are required to have Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (Sanitation SOP), which are written procedures that an establishment develops and implements to prevent direct contamination or adulteration of product. For more than 30 years, I have been operating at the cross-roads of the global food business. The USDA does not plan to issue an order to a facility unless necessary. For example, some of the food options not as impacted by the coronavirus include nuts (almonds, pecans, pistachios) that are a good source of protein, antioxidants and fiber. FSIS remains committed to ensuring that food safety regulations are met. To learn more about the important role the food and agricultural sector plays in the COVID-19 response, please visit www.cisa.gov/food-and-agriculture-sector. A: FSIS always encourages employees who are sick to stay home. CDC recommends that face coverings should: NOTE: The cloth face coverings recommended by CDC are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. From my perspective, we’re looking at a reshaping of the food industry’s business standards and how supply chains operate. It is the establishment’s responsibility to implement the procedures as written in the Sanitation SOPs. JUMP TO:Access to FoodCritical InfrastructureFood SafetyExecutive Order. COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets that can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby. A: No. A: To prevent spread of COVID-19, CDC is recommending individuals employ social distancing or maintaining approximately 6 feet from others, when possible. Before eating, rinse fresh fruits and vegetables under running tap water, including those with skins and rinds that are not eaten. HoyaSaxa Georgetown University MBA, © 2020 Forbes Media LLC. After receiving your delivery, wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. We’ve already been suffering a shortage of qualified truck drivers as well as cargo containers  (NotEnoughContainersGlobally). Adding up the variables and thinking through the classic “Bull Whip” or “Forester effect” forecasting theory that I learned in grad school, it does appear to me that everyone is too far upstream of the consumer, even the retailers. A: The issuance of priority orders under the Defense Production Act is an option under active consideration. You may opt-out by. We encourage coordination with local health officials for all businesses so that timely and accurate information can guide appropriate responses in each location where their operations reside. Will this become the new age of home cooking? “Before, roughly half the food spending in the U.S. was what we call away from home—restaurants, the cafe near work, those types of venues,” Griffin said. Always keep in mind the basic 4 food safety steps when preparing food —Â. Pay online or on the phone when you order (if possible). It may never recover. In the light of recent challenges in food supply chain, there is now considerable concern about food production, processing, … A: The AMS Commodity Procurement Program (CPP) will remain fully operational and plans to continue to work with Federal, state and local partners to purchase and distribute food to participants in domestic and international nutrition assistance programs. A: Testing strategy and protocol for critical infrastructure, including meat, poultry, and processed egg product facilities, should be developed by each State, based on ongoing guidance from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and CDC. Learn more about available FNS flexibilities to help ensure food access during the pandemic response, please visit: www.fns.usda.gov/disaster/pandemic. This paper provides an early assessment of the implications of the COVID‐19 pandemic for food supply chains and supply chain resilience. The focus later expanded to figure out how the cold chain would also be used to successfully … The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed the fragility of the global food supply chain. By leading non-profit and for-profit food & beverage organizations through, For more than 30 years, I have been operating at the cross-roads of the global food business. storm - Fotolia. So when the supply chain system itself is thrown into question — as it is now thanks to COVID-19 — then the wheels threaten to … FSIS verifies that regulated establishments adhere to the procedures in place. I cover the inner workings of the global food industry. 2020-12-14T09:45:00+00:00 By Daniel Woolfson. For more information on how to protect yourself from COVID-19 during food deliveries, visit CDC's webpage for advice on essential errands: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/essential-goods-services.html. A: Coronaviruses are enveloped viruses, meaning they are one of the easiest types of viruses to kill with the appropriate disinfectant product. Coronavirus upends global food supply chains in latest economic shock. Q: Can I get sick with COVID-19 from touching food, the food packaging, or food contact surfaces, if the coronavirus was present on it? Planning for absenteeism is a part of normal FSIS operations. We ask that vendors extend as much flexibility as possible and be assured that CPP Contracting Officers will utilize all available contractual flexibilities and contingencies to continue to serve program recipients effectively during this time. To avoid delivery issues and challenges, all contracted vendors should: A: USDA expects the U.S. food market to remain well-supplied and food prices to remain stable, or even decline, in the near future (see blog by chief economist Rob Johansson). Otherwise, stay at least 6 feet away from the delivery person. So, what does the food industry do when forecasting isn’t reliable? The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has published a list of disinfectants that have qualified under EPA's emerging viral pathogen program for use against SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Communicate with CPP Contract Specialists or Contracting Officers for any deviation to contractual requirements. Food banks are also trying to adapt to disrupted supply chains, Villarreal says. An official website of the United States government. USDA strongly recommends establishments utilize the recommendations highlighted in the guidance document where practical, recognizing that how they are implemented may differ given the unique circumstances of establishments and processing facilities nationwide. Even though the U.S. food supply is not being tremendously affected by the coronavirus, consumers might feel a small impact in stores and at restaurants. What measures are FDA (and CDC, state partners, etc.) A: If necessary, USDA will issue an order to a company or an establishment requiring them to fulfill their contracts. The establishment must maintain daily records sufficient to document the implementation and monitoring of the Sanitation SOPs and any corrective action taken. This has certainly been a year of great impacts on food supply chains. Consumers are initially driven to cupboard-loading products they may not especially want just to have food in the house. A shock to the supply chain As COVID-19 spread across the United States, the stability of the nation’s food systems quickly came into question. Secure .gov websites use HTTPS FNS is ready to assist in the government-wide effort to ensure all Americans have access to food in times of need. A: In the event of a diagnosed COVID-19 illness, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) will follow, and is encouraging establishments to follow, the recommendations of local public health authorities regarding notification of potential contacts. COVID-19 has disrupted supply chains but perhaps none more significantly than food and beverage (F&B). see blog by chief economist Rob Johansson, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/transmission.html, Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19, www.fda.gov/food/food-safety-during-emergencies/shopping-food-during-covid-19-pandemic-information-consumers, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/essential-goods-services.html, Make and confirm delivery appointments prior to shipping; and. The connection for all supply-chain elements working in unison is people – from fork-lift operators to truck drivers to warehouse men to forecasters and sales personnel. We can start by recognizing the fundamental shift in the way Americans eat, said professor Tim Griffin, division chair of Agriculture, Food, and Environment at the Friedman School, whose classes cover agricultural science and policy and the food system. Rulemaking is not necessary for USDA to carry out the delegated authorities under the Defense Production Act. As we all know, agriculture is vital to our country, and will play a vital role during the COVID-19 response. Q: Will H2A workers be impacted by President Trump’s Immigration Executive Order? By leading non-profit and for-profit food & beverage organizations through transformational change, I am witnessing an amazing disruption of the food industry. What the COVID-19 pandemic threatens is a trail of infected people from every corner of this country and the preventions we need to avoid that will require time to implement – something supply-chains eat up. A: FSIS employees will be following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) and State Department’s recommendations for travel. We know that grocery employees will be infected with the virus. For the safety of our auditors, FSIS does not provide the dates when the auditors are scheduled to conduct in-country equivalence audits in a foreign country. Food production and manufacturing are widely dispersed throughout the U.S. and there are currently no wide-spread disruptions reported in the supply chain. Or a grand opportunity for nimble and alert entrepreneurs to step in and remake the landscape? Employees exhibiting symptoms are also encouraged to follow recommendations from local, state and Federal public health regarding reporting of illness, consulting with healthcare providers and self-quarantining as necessary. Serving the $160 billion U.S. specialty food industry as an Advocate, Advisor and former President of the Specialty Food Association (SFA) allows me to see how the future of food is being shaped. A: The FDA also has a list of frequently asked questions such as: See more on FDA's Frequently Asked Questions webpage. And we’ll need clear heads with a willingness for serious transparency, more methodical and collaborative understanding of consumer behavior to succeed in the future. Additional information on how to make and wear cloth face coverings is available on the CDC website. A: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Labor (DOL) have issued guidance specific to the meat and poultry processing industry in order to facilitate ongoing operations and support the food supply, while also mitigating the risk of spreading COVID-19. However, if you wish, you can wipe down product packaging and allow it to air dry, as an extra precaution. When engineering controls, such as physical barriers, are not feasible in a particular workplace or for a certain operation, other types of controls, including PPE, may be considered in accordance with the hierarchy. Coronavirus COVID-19 safety steps urged for Fresno farmworkers. We can anticipate a run on frozen foods, specialty products, and a raid on the meat cases – all while food manufacturers will probably continue moving standard dry goods to the right place at the wrong time, while freezing fresh perishables for down the road sales. Per the CDC, the purpose of wearing a face covering is to help prevent the transmission of coronavirus from individuals who may be infected, but are not showing symptoms. Considering the food supply chain, one of the most important sectors of the economy, it has been seen that COVID-19 has an impact on the whole process from the field to the consumer. In-store service personnel are the final point of contact in the supply-chain and the direct connection to consumers. Ask for deliveries to be left in a safe spot outside your house (such as your front porch or lobby), with no person-to-person interaction. A: Food facilities, like other work establishments, need to follow protocols set by local and state health departments, which may vary depending on the amount of community spread of COVID-19 in a particular area. These guidelines were developed recognizing that these establishments and their operations are critical (PDF, 796 KB) to the security of the nation's food supply. Manufacturers and distributors committed to ensuring the food supply chain would continue working as an essential industry. A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States. We can’t rush into supplying what consumers don’t want. 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