Better cooperation in the chain: take that first step yourself

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

The animal feed sector has been committed to assuring optimum feed safety for decades. In recent years, responsible and sustainable working has also taken on greater importance in the industry. Is it enough to meet the expectations of modern consumers?

Blog January, Better cooperation in the chain: take that first step yourself

Johan den Hartog
Managing Director, GMP+ International

The second webinar in the run-up to the 2022 Global Feed Safety Summit will focus on this question.

The webinar, next Wednesday 3 February, will have as its theme 'From feed to food: one goal, different challenges – actionable insights from retail, food and feed leaders'. Leading the discussion will be Vincent ter Beek (Pig Progress), while speakers will include John Kirkpatrick, Agricultural Manager for Poultry and Eggs TESCO, Wolfgang Peralta, Head of swine feeding and production at Agrosuper Chile and Mia Lafontaine, Sustainability Manager Trouw Nutrition. You can register here.

Links in the chain

The 'from feed to food' theme has been in the spotlight for some time now. Which is only logical, as our choices in terms of animal feed production affect what ends up on all our plates in terms of dairy products, meat, eggs, fish and the like.

That knowledge alone should be enough to put an end to any remaining naivety, ignorance and disregard for the role we play. None of us operates as an island. This applies not only to the animal feed links in the food chain, but also to subsequent links in the processing industry for animal products, such as wholesale, retail and food service. All these individual links form a single chain, with the end product for the consumer as its final result – and that calls for a sense of responsibility.

To strengthen that chain, we must become more transparent towards each other and towards the outside world, and work together systematically through coordination and assurance throughout the chain, instead of only incidentally (or worse, only when problems force us to act). Opportunistically dropping issues in each other’s laps, or waiting for the other party to take the lead, is not consistent with sustainable chain cooperation. What is called for is partnership at company level and also at the level of certification scheme operators.

Ask customers

With cooperation, transparency and product integrity, we are investing in trust and relevance for the long term. In concrete terms, this can be achieved by proactively and systematically enquiring about the wishes and requirements of your customers and suppliers. In this way, we learn from each other and keep each other in mind.

Of course, we can question some developments in the market, and the feasibility of particular measures in the short term. Nevertheless, we can already start taking small but significant steps towards increased cooperation and mutual commitment.

With a multi-faceted certification scheme, including an Early Warning System, tracking & tracing, support and online webinars, we continue to support the industry in these goals. In the webinar, we want to provide an initial impetus for discussion, awareness and possible steps towards improved cooperation throughout the food production chain.


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