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What is the simplest way to generate batch numbers?

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#1 VeganAntics

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 08:43 PM

Hi 

 

My partner and I own a Vegan dessert company and we have recently developed a product that will be available for commercial purchase, we have sent the sample for nutritional analysis which we understand is required by EU/UK law but I am also aware that for any product for commercial sale will need a batch number to identify the product in case of expiry/product recalls etc. 

 

I have very minimal experience apart from working with LEAN processing/manufacturing in my previous job, does somebody have a simple system/quality management system that we could adopt? What is the simplest way to generate batch numbers?

 

There are 7 ingredients that go into our product mix so I would assume we would need to be able to list these and their description, manufacturers & expiry dates etc for each batch number we generate? 

 

It would be great if you could help us out on this journey to becoming a commercial seller.

 

Thank you :)

 

Ash 

 

 


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#2 sheckroth

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 09:46 PM

A good way I have seen for generating lot codes is using the year, julian date, and batch number for that day (i.e. batch 1 from today would be 18-116-01, or 1811601).

You should log the expiration/lot codes for each of your ingredients in your internal records/traceability system so that if you ever had a recall from a specific ingredient, you could look at your records and see which finished good lot #s it went into. 

Hope that helps,

Sarah


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#3 jcieslowski

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Posted 25 January 2018 - 06:10 PM

You should consider how large or small your lots are.  I don't mean in number of pieces, I mean in 'time' of production.  Do you produce one batch a day?  One batch a week?   Keep in mind that the LARGER your batches are, the more work is involved in a recall.

 

That being said, the simplest way, I think, is just to use the Julian Date.  January 1st = Batch #001.  Today = Batch #025.   If you have product that has a long shelf life, add a year.  (Batch #18001 or #18025) If you do multiple batches a day you could add at the end (Batch #18001-1, #18001-2, etc.) but I wouldn't recommend doing that if you have too many batches in a day because it makes it harder to keep track of.

 

Hope that provides some inspiration.


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#4 VeganAntics

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Posted 25 January 2018 - 06:43 PM

Hi

 

Thank you very much for your assistance, I think you are right and that I will be going forward with Julian Date, I just want to clear this up so I produce the correct batch numbers, we will only be creating one batch per day.

 

This is how I can sum this up:

 

Todays date: 25/01/2018

Todays Batch: 1

Expiry Date: 1 year (2019 or 19)

 

It would look like this:

012501201819

 

Would this work? or have I over-complicated this?

 

Thanks

Ash


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#5 jcieslowski

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Posted 25 January 2018 - 06:53 PM

Ash, 

 

That does seem a bit confusing.  I get the 0125 but then don't understand the 0120.  I assume that 18 is for year made and 19 is for year expired?

 

If you wanted to do the batch number by calendar date I would just stick with 012518 or 250118.  It doesn't have to be all 1 number either.  You could do a batch number of:  01-25-18 or 25-01-18 or whatever you want.

 

Whatever you come up with, you should be able to explain it in a 1 page 'lot code explanation' document that some customers may ask for.  As a general rule of dealing with anyone at another company understanding what you're doing, I always assume they're the dumbest person I know.  I don't mean that insultingly, but if I can't explain it so the dumbest person I know can understand, it's probably too complicated.

 

That's my $0.02 worth.


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#6 VeganAntics

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Posted 25 January 2018 - 06:59 PM

Thanks for clearing that up, I think as the batches are to be made on a daily basis, it would be easier for me to generate them such as 250118-19 , this way the 1-year expiry will be at the end of the batch. 

 

I will create a document explaining this, this step into commercial production is very educating. I used to work at a company who followed ISO 9001 and the document was hundreds of pages long!

 

Thanks

Ash


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#7 BrummyJim

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Posted 26 January 2018 - 08:43 AM

Hi Ash,

 

I think you're still overcomplicating it. I have seen companies using a simple sequential number for batch numbers. As long as you have all the information linking to each batch, that's all you will need. You don't need to encode expiry information as that should be on the product. 

 

An alternative could be a simple Julian date with daily batch sequence (e.g. 0268-1). Unless you have a 10 year shelf life, that would also be sufficient.

 

Are you looking at SALSA (Small and local supplier approval  https://www.salsafood.co.uk/ ?). It's a simple food safety management system designed for small companies. It's less demanding than BRC and easier to implement.


Edited by Charles.C, 07 February 2018 - 06:57 PM.
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