Preventing Recalls: Learn From Other Companies’ Mistakes

By Leah Roberts

Despite the implementation of FSMA and the more rigorous standards it represents, food safety in the United States continues to be an issue with major recalls still highlighting, in the public’s mind, that not all companies are able to protect consumer interest. The long-term implications of a recall can be detrimental to a food organization in terms of company reputation, economic outcome, lower share values, and civil litigation, which can all lead to bankruptcy.

“Learn from others’ failures in this arena,” advises Darin Detwiler, professor of food regulatory policy at Northeastern University. “Many models exist that highlight the economic and legal ramifications for failure to prevent or respond to recalls.”

While food producers, processors and manufacturers are following guidelines and completing food safety requirements to prevent a recall, the best in the industry are going above and beyond minimal government and auditor standards to share food safety solutions directly with the public. Detwiler notes that organizations that demand the best ingredients from suppliers, foster a food safety culture with employees, and use technology to be transparent, are restoring trust with their customers.

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