How the Capacity to Pivot Could Protect the Food Supply Chain

despite some disruptions to certain elements of the food supply, the food retail industry has so far demonstrated remarkable resiliency during the pandemic.

The theme of food has loomed large in the narrative of COVID-19. Early in the pandemic, fears of mass disruption of food supply chains led consumers to ransack supermarket shelves and hoard non-perishable items like soup, pasta and rice.

Yet despite some disruptions to certain elements of the food supply, such as shortages of meat resulting from COVID-19 outbreaks at critical meat processing facilities, the food retail industry has so far demonstrated remarkable resiliency during the pandemic. This is not to say that the food supply chain has emerged unscathed.

Lessons Learned about Food Supply Chain Resiliency

In a recent article in the journal Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, Chenarides et al (2021) examine the devastating impact of the pandemic on the food service distribution channel … Read more...

How Digital Transformation Is Propelling Operational Excellence in Oil and Gas

Digital Transformation Oil and Gas

Digital transformation plays an impactful role in shaping practices and processes in most industries, including oil and gas. From accurately forecasting the number of incidents to automating administrative tasks related to those incidents and process hazard analyses, the digitization of the oil and gas industry has contributed to worker safety, streamlined EHSQ and compliance processes and nurtured improved safety cultures.

While the oil and gas industry has not been at the forefront of innovation historically, it has, however, retained its position as a leading player in the economy as it continues to be the largest source of energy (in the U.S., it is the #1 source). As the source material for gasoline, diesel and jet fuel, it is also used to make products including propane, asphalt and petro-chemical feedstocks as well as heavy and light fuel oil. On top of that, it is also used in producing many consumer products … Read more...

Chemical Policy Development: A Recipe for Managing Restricted Substances Throughout the Full Product Lifecycle 

Restricted Substances Full Product Lifecycle

How does your organization manage restricted substances? Do you currently have a governance, risk management and compliance (GRC) network or chemical policy in place? Do you know which elements are considered essential as part of a plan to ensure consistent compliance?

A GRC Network is an interconnected set of processes, rules, tools and systems to adopt, implement, manage and monitor integrated, organizational programs. This achieves safety and compliance throughout the product lifecycle and up and down the supply chain. Many senior risk and compliance managers rely on this type of managed approach.

At the recent virtual Engage’20 Regulatory Compliance Forum and User Conference, Kami Blake, Sr. Customer Success Expert at Verisk 3E, discussed the importance of developing a GRC Network and chemical policy and how to take an approach which focuses on processes and policy. She outlined which considerations should be made to ensure intelligent compliance across the product lifecycle, … Read more...

Do You Know How Cold-Chain Requirements for the COVID-19 Vaccine Can Impact its Time to Launch?

COVID-19 Vaccine cold supply chain
The Good News: The Vaccines Work


News of promising results in COVID-19 vaccine research has brought a glimmer of hope to people around the world. Within the space of two weeks, both Pfizer and Moderna have announced that early results of their front-runner vaccines show an effectiveness rate of about 95%. The news catalyzed an upsurge in the stock market and spurred governments around the world to begin planning for delivering the vaccines to the most vulnerable populations.


The Bad News: Delivering the Vaccine Will Be Challenging


While the world’s attention has been on the vaccine as a way out of the COVID-19 crisis, distributing the vaccine globally will require one of the largest logistical operations in modern history. The most significant barrier to large-scale distribution is the requirement of a seamless cold-chain. Pfizer’s vaccine needs to be stored at an ultra-cold -75C, while Moderna’s vaccine requires storage at … Read more...

World Quality Day: COVID-19 Accelerates Push for Quality Maturity in Life Sciences

COVID-19 Quality Supply Chains FDA

COVID-19 has brought unprecedented challenges to quality and supply chain management within the life sciences industry. Drug shortages caused by unprecedented supply and demand pressures continue to be significant challenges for many life sciences companies today and for the general public at large as the pandemic continues to escalate.


The Fragile State of the Pharmaceutical Supply Chains in the US


According to a recent report by the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), the US domestic pharmaceutical supply chain remains in a state of heightened vulnerability, with almost three quarters of the critical drugs required to treat COVID-19 patients facing significant shortages. The current shortages have brought quality management into the spotlight for many life science organizations and have tightened the focus on issues of quality maturity across the larger pharmaceutical manufacturing value chain.

Beyond supply chain disruption, additional factors including implementation of new public health safety protocols, … Read more...

How to Build Supply Chain Resiliency in a Pandemic World

Supply Chain Resiliency

When we go shopping at our local grocery store, pharmacy, hardware outlet, or just about any other kind of retailer, we expect the goods we’re seeking to be there, sitting on the shelf, ready for us to purchase and take home to use whenever we so desire. We take for granted this instantaneous availability of practically anything we want or need.


The Robust Design and Interconnected Systems of Global Supply Chains


What we so infrequently consider is why we are able to do so. The answer lies in the advanced efficiencies built into the modern supply chain that underpins these products’ raw material sourcing, manufacture, and ultimate delivery to the retail outlets we frequent. It’s easy to forget all the necessary steps that must take place for us to enjoy this convenient consumption.

Because supply chains have become so invisibly ingrained in our lives, it’s also easy to forget just … Read more...

How Home Renovation Projects Have Exposed Supply Chain Fragility

Supply Chain Fragility

Like many people around the world, you’ve probably been working from home for the past six months. Perhaps you’ve also been monitoring your children as they navigate the improvised labyrinth of online learning. All day, every day, you’ve been immersed in your home environment far more than you ever thought you would be. It seems like you’re constantly preparing food, loading the dishwasher, doing laundry, getting snacks, and engaging in a seemingly infinite number of other mundane activities that have turned your quiet home into a concerto for frazzled knowledge-worker soloist and obsolete-appliance orchestra.

If this is you, then perhaps your familiarity with your home has bred contempt for its flaws. Perhaps, you reason, if you’re to be imprisoned in your home during the dreaded second wave of the pandemic, it’s time to switch things up a bit, time to retire your veteran appliances and draft in a new generation … Read more...

How to Enhance RFP Preparedness to Ensure a Smoother Journey to Completion: A Quick and Easy Approach

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail,” is as timeless and universal as it gets.

While preparation does take work – at least upfront – it usually makes the rest of the journey smoother and shorter. In sum, it can lead to a more successful outcome, which is the objective of all business plans.


RFP Preparedness for ESHQ Software Procurement Projects: The Essentials


With budget season only a short distance away, procurement projects for the following year are also ready to start. As expected, software solution projects in ESHQ follow the same approach. Once you’ve figured out the basics—the budget, business and technical requirements and timelines—you can get right into the industry or sector-specific requirements.


With EHSQ software procurement projects having specific considerations, it’s important to know exactly what your organization requires to meet your ESHQ goals. The next logical step is to determine the real capabilities and … Read more...

HelloFresh Is Using Technology To Take a Huge Bite Out of a Multitrillion Dollar Industry

When families are counting on you for dinner, an unreliable supply chain is not an option. HelloFresh focuses on every step of the farm-to-door journey, shipping meal kits to millions of Americans, each filled with all of the ingredients necessary to prepare three to five different meals.

I recently found out how HelloFresh is using technology to reduce waste, improve quality processes and streamline supplier relations, all while doubling orders and revenue year-over-year.

It’s estimated that 40 percent of the food supply in the United States goes to waste because of over-portioning and wasteful distribution. Because of the attention to correct portioning, HelloFresh reduces the dinner food waste of its customers by at least 21 percent, resulting in a staggering reduction of food waste each week.

The company has over 2,500 employees in the United States who provide millions of meals that are carefully planned, carefully sourced and delivered … Read more...

Quality 4.0: It’s time for a QMS Revolution

Why is it time for a Quality Management System revolution?

The world is more complex than it used to be. Businesses around the globe rely heavily on one another through densely intertwined supply chains. Human biases lead to … Read more...