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saml2449

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Posted 10 January 2018 - 09:42 PM

Hi all,

 

So I have gone through the past posts regarding recalls and traceability exercises and they tend to be regarding consumer packaged goods. In the case of a restaurant, would they have to have their own mock recall and traceability exercise or would they be part of the suppliers recall plan? For example, the restaurant gets vegetables from X suppliers. Would the restaurant have to be part of each supplier's recall plan or should the restaurant come up with their own recall plan that includes the supplier? I would imagine, for a restaurant, it would involve taking out whichever product from a certain batch or lot is flagged but not quite sure if there is anything else of concern to take into account.

 

Would this recall plan also include the distribution center where the vegetables first go to before getting shipped to the restaurant? Should we request the recall plan from the distribution center?

 

Thanks!



BrummyJim

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 10:26 AM

Hi Saml2449,

 

The problem is that you can't recall something that has already been consumed (it might recall itself, but that's a different matter!). As long as you are purchasing from reputable suppliers, they will be tracking what they sell you, so in the event of a recall, they will be able to notify you if you have bought the product. Cash & Carries will be a different matter as they are unlikely to be able to trace batches specifically to you, so you should be aware of issues.

 

You should have a policy describing how you assess which suppliers you use, what you buy from each and how you manage the stock. Just thinking about it will help clarify what you want to achieve.



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GrumpyJimmy

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 10:46 AM

saml2449 hi, 

 

As BrummyJim said, realistically its a little late apart from stock which would be recalled by the supplier and part of their plan. Make sure you use suppliers that have a good record and reputation also risk assessing them with records of that assessment. You wont know where the item under recall has specifically gone i.e. the specific customer so all you can do is make sure you have a good plan to segregate any effected stock and if really serious easy access to the numbers of any authority you need to notify of the event. You may have to put something up in the restaurant to say there has been an issue but at the same time you don't want to panic customers.

 

What ever you put in place make sure everyone is trained and happy they know what to do in the event of an issue.

 

J



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SteveHather

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 10:50 AM

Hi Saml2449, 

 

Your suppliers should all have recall plans and an agreed protocol around immediate notification of a problem to you. This should be part of your supplier agreement.

 

If you are a chain with group purchasing, you will need a process to contact all your distribution centers and stores to locate, quarantine and take required action ie return to DC, return to supplier, supplier pick up, destruction at store are some options depending on your supply chain. Regulator and consumer communications would normally be the responsibility of the supplier but at the end of the day if people are getting sick after eating at your restaurants, you will need a plan for communicating to consumers, particularly over social media. 



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SQFconsultant

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 01:20 PM

Having worked with suppliers to restaurants, chain outlets and hotel groups it is normally the supplier that has a recall/trace program in place that when activated alerts back to their sources of supply and forward to their first line of customers.

 

Thus, the supplier (or producer) contacts their sources (their inputs) and then contacts their 1st line of customers (your DC) and in turn those entities contact their customers (your restaurant or chain.)

 

Understanding how your DC's recall/trace program works will aid your business in knowing what to do if and when an actual recall happens.

 

I would request a copy of the DC's protocols/program as well as a copy of their last mock recall to get a better understanding of your responsibilities in the event of a recall situation.


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TimGoss

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 01:29 PM

Morning Sam. I work at the food distribution level (to both supermarkets and restaurants). Here, our Purchasing/inventory department are the majority of our recall team. When our suppliers inform of us recalled product, our Director of Purchasing assigns purchasing agents (usually one, but it will depend on amount of product we need to recall) to contact every customer (if you are at the restaurant level this is where YOU would be contacted) with date we sold you the product, item #'s, amounts, reason for recall, and what customer should do with any remaining product they have (99% of the time this is destruction of product).

So on YOUR level what you need to have in place is:

  • Clear defined recall procedures from your suppliers (it's ok to ask for this, or for a written step by step of how they will recall products they sell you)
  • Provide your supplier with a CLEAR means of communication (if you don't answer your phone or read your emails in a timely manner, we can't inform you of product that we've sold you under recall) and make CERTAIN that each supplier has this on file for you in case of recall
  • Have a policy that explains step by step how to pull and dispose of recalled product with responsibilities (be careful with just throwing it in the dumpster)

Those are just recommendations of "best practices" I've noticed. There are probably guidelines with Servesafe or whichever restaurant food and beverage safety scheme you guys use. 



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saml2449

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 03:24 PM

Morning Sam. I work at the food distribution level (to both supermarkets and restaurants). Here, our Purchasing/inventory department are the majority of our recall team. When our suppliers inform of us recalled product, our Director of Purchasing assigns purchasing agents (usually one, but it will depend on amount of product we need to recall) to contact every customer (if you are at the restaurant level this is where YOU would be contacted) with date we sold you the product, item #'s, amounts, reason for recall, and what customer should do with any remaining product they have (99% of the time this is destruction of product).

So on YOUR level what you need to have in place is:

  • Clear defined recall procedures from your suppliers (it's ok to ask for this, or for a written step by step of how they will recall products they sell you)
  • Provide your supplier with a CLEAR means of communication (if you don't answer your phone or read your emails in a timely manner, we can't inform you of product that we've sold you under recall) and make CERTAIN that each supplier has this on file for you in case of recall
  • Have a policy that explains step by step how to pull and dispose of recalled product with responsibilities (be careful with just throwing it in the dumpster)

Those are just recommendations of "best practices" I've noticed. There are probably guidelines with Servesafe or whichever restaurant food and beverage safety scheme you guys use. 

 

Okay so should the distribution center have a contact list for regulatory agencies like the FDA in the event of a recall. Or should these contacts be given by the suppliers?

 

In terms of disposal of product, the distribution center will have to make the decision as to how to deal with the product or would it be up to the state/local authority?

 

Thank you so much!



TimGoss

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 03:39 PM

Hey Sam, our recall plan does list FDA and a few other "emergency numbers" which is driven by our third party audit global food safety scheme. As far as recalls go, your distribution center is probably not going to be the one to initiate or be the source of a recall (as in HIGHGLY UNLIKELY if it's box in/box out like ours). These recalls (and we've seen quite a few lately due to allergen mislabeling) will be initiated by the manufacturer in most cases. 

What you want to see in your distribution company's recall plan is how they are notified of a recall (it should be by the companies supplying them items). Recalls policy/procedure typically handles all steps 1 forward and 1 back. What you as a customer need to determine is "Is my distribution company adequately covered on a recall 1 forward (to me) and 1 back (to the supplier/manufacturer).

 

As far as product disposal, the only other alternative is usually product return. That is very rare, and would be if FDA requested certain batches from the supplier for "reasons". I don't believe at the restaurant level you would ever see that, but at the distribution level it's a minute possibility.

Typically, a supplier/manufacturer will make their own decision to voluntarily push a recall long before FDA gets involved.



Timwoodbag

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 04:41 PM

 

Those are just recommendations of "best practices" I've noticed. There are probably guidelines with Servesafe or whichever restaurant food and beverage safety scheme you guys use. 

 

Based on my years of small family owned restaurant experience (and the passing of a servsafe class), recalls are barely thought of on the restaurant level.  Servsafe is a day long class that the stoners at the pizza shop pass with flying colors.  There is very little regulation in general for a small restaurant.  Do not depend on them to get involved at all.  And good luck telling them they need to take time out of their day to cut open 100 bags of recalled product for it to be disposed of properly....they will just toss it in the dumpster I almost guarantee it.







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