Several consumers are thinking about how the delicious food they eat arrives on their dinner plates. There are a lot of stages involved, and some of them can be even unsafe or unappetizing. However, businesses are improving their food supply chains with technology.
And the businesses that bring food to consumers have a lot to take into account as well. Every processor, farmer, and seller is responsible for some form of food management. Shipping delivery, arranging suppliers, and managing food costs are all part of the supply chain process.
However, the food supply chain is complicated because it entails every touchpoint of a food item from farm to table. Considering the type of food involved, there may be several stages in the process, such as farm, processing, distributing, and retailer. Here is what you need to know about some of the challenges of this process.
Food Supply Chains With Technology Accessible
Fortunately for many small businesses, the supply chain management industry is persistently adapting to the requirements of businesses. The shortcoming is that it isn’t happening as fast as many would like. I feel that it is incumbent for people in the industry to make the most of technology and revolutionize the way small businesses manage supply chain management.
Automation Is Trying To Tackle Transportation
There is no shortage of players invested in the supply chain. There are established companies trying to either buy these start-ups or develop their technology to better compete with them. Furthermore, transportation continues to be the biggest wild card. This is hugely due to the complications of varying regulations around the globe. Usually, you are dealing with the regulations of two different countries, and they might not add up.
Even in the United States, a simple truck order of 1,000 pounds of freight is working under a set of regulations and pricing methodologies that are almost a century old — and difficult for many to understand. Small business shippers and logistics providers have been slow to enter the modern era, yet strides are being made with the help of transportation management systems (TMSs).
The Internet Of Things Is Connecting All Stages Of The Supply Chain
We’ve discussed how transportation management systems are taking leverage of automation to enhance efficiency. Many companies are taking things even further by implementing technology throughout the entire supply chain.
The internet of things (IoT) has already interfaced itself with our cars and homes, so it should come as no surprise that we also see it in our businesses. While you can argue that this dependence on technology makes our enterprises vulnerable to cyberattacks, many manufacturers feel the advantages of the IoT are worth the risks.
Technology Reduces Labor Costs While Improving Wages
Labor costs make up under one-third of the entire supply chain costs. In an industry where margins can be razor-thin, saving money wherever possible is the utmost to a business’s success. Food supply chains with technology provide crucial solutions at a time when businesses require them to keep the world moving.
Whether it’s seen in warehouses or on the trucks themselves, food supply chains with technology are making the process more efficient for businesses of all sizes. What’s more, while it cuts down overall labor costs, technology increases the wages of some jobs as the skills needed to operate this technology become more complex.
Small business often relies on a network of shipping partners to get items into the hands of their customers. As supply chains get more complex and consumer demand rises, the shipping process can become disorganized, driving issues down the path. A dependable shipping partner that is committed to supplying chain visibility can provide businesses more control over customer sentiment and loyalty.
For manufacturers, it is crucial to choose third-party shipping providers that share the same priorities regarding food supply chains with technology and traceability. Grocers and online food retailers should adopt digitalization as well, enhancing the inventory management process in terms of speed and accuracy. Technology can allow the creation of a high-functioning ecosystem where all parties can readily track the origin and destination of an item in real time and what happens at every location in between.