Traceability in the food industry

Food traceability is essential for many industries.

In the food sector, it allows the possibility of following all the steps that a food has taken in all its stages, from its origin in the primary sector, through its transformation process, its logistics and ending up in the hands of the final consumer.

Companies must have a traceability program that they will use as a tool within their internal control system. The information provided by this traceability helps to manage and control its activities, and is also essential to improve processes and correct problems that may arise when carrying out its activities.

In case of detecting an alert, they are able to guide us to find the origin of the problem or fraud.

In case of detecting an alert, they are able to guide us to find the origin of the problem or fraud.

The main objectives sought by companies with a traceability system are the following:

  • Identify a product in an easy and simple way.
  • Record the entire transformation process: the controls passed from the entry of raw material to its exit once transformed.
  • Prove its origin and destination.



Guarantee traceability

At the level of horizontal legislation, we find Regulation (EC) 178/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council, in article 18, establishes the obligation to comply with a traceability system for all companies that are part of the food chain.

At a sectorial level or vertical legislation, we have a series of regulations regarding the identification of products, of which we highlight the following:

For meat and derivatives, we highlight Regulation (CE) No. 1760/2000 of the European Parliament and of the Council, of July 17, 2000, which establishes a system for the identification and registration of animals of the bovine species and relative to the labeling of beef and beef products

For Fish and fishery products, Regulation (EC) 2406/1996 of the Council, which establishes common marketing standards for certain fishery products, regarding the classification of products.



How to identify products and ensure their traceability


The food identification at each stage is essential to be able to control its traceability. There are different methods that facilitate this task, among which we highlight the barcode system, QR codes, BIDI Datamtrix and RFID technology.





The bar codes used in most goods must comply with international standards in terms of food traceability. Many companies are also choosing the use of RFID technology due to the advantages associated with it. In this sense, for some products, security seals play a fundamental role, since, thanks to their versatility, they allow the efficient transfer of information related to the food in question and, in addition, ensure the absence of fraud.

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