Traceability and product integrity
Within Traceability and product integrity:
During 2021, we further implemented modernised software systems and cloud solutions in our pork production plants. We did this in order to optimise the data flow in a more precise, efficient way and to be able to make product balance calculations in more detail.
Separate supply chains for specific retailers
Within the north-western European market, consumers and customers are increasingly demanding to know the origin of their meat. For example, several Dutch and German retailers demand meat originating from a limited number of pig farms. There are groups of Dutch pig farms, certified as Beter Leven 1-star, which are associated with a specific retailer. We make sure that these individual supply chains are dedicated to one customer. These retailer-specific supply chains are also a good opportunity to demonstrate full transparency to consumers and citizens
DNA is the ultimate consumer-care check and also an instrument to show the integrity of all our processes
Integrity of Vion Good Farming Star pork verified by DNA
In the last few years, the integrity of our products and processes have become more important for our customers and consumers. By ‘integrity’, we mean that all attributes associated with the product, including animal welfare and origin, can be 100% verified. We have already implemented process integrity control systems with verification by product, balanced throughout the whole supply chain. In addition to these certified systems, we have now added the monitoring of product integrity through the DNA testing of consumer products.
From pig to sausage: Identity Preserved
We have organised the process so that DNA from all Good Farming Star sows is collected, analysed, and stored in a DNA data bank. DNA tests are conducted to verify that consumer goods such as pork chops, fresh sausages, cooked meat products, and pork meal components all comply with the pig of origin. In short, DNA is the ultimate consumer-care check and also an instrument to show the integrity of all our processes. With this instrument, Vion can demonstrate that it is actively ensuring its product integrity.
IFS product integrity assessment
When the sustainable market concept ‘Varken van Morgen (Beter Leven 1-star)’ was developed for Dutch retail a few years ago, with additional requirements for animal welfare, animal health, and environment, it was agreed with retail that the integrity of these products should be guaranteed during processing. The CBL chain of custody standard was used to control and prove product and process integrity. During 2019, Vion prepared to move from the CBL chain of custody to the IFS PIA (IFS Product Integrity Assessment). In 2020, all Dutch Vion meat production plants, as well the first two production plants in Germany, have successfully passed the IFS Product Integrity Assessment.
Clarification of the results
The 2021 target was to have 85% of our external sold volume certified under a specific integrity standard. We reached 77%. The certification body was unable to plan the required site audits in Q4 of 2021. These audits are already conducted in 2022 at the time this report is published.