Quality Control for Food Manufacturers - Batch Control Logs
You spend a lot of time, effort, and money developing your recipe and getting it just the way you, and even more importantly your customers, want it.
So how do you make sure it comes out the same each time, especially once your production gets to the point where you need other people to help you make your product? Batch control logs are a great way to avoid mistakes and ensure consistency in your production.
Idiot Proofing Your Production
A batch control log is a best practice in food manufacturing. It is in essence a checklist and is comparable to what a pilot ticks through before taking off. Such checklists help people avoid mistakes, and they make reviewing events and identifying problems easier if something does go wrong.
Another way to think of the log is as a road map and a journal for your production team. It tells them exactly where they are going and how to get there and provides a record of what has happened along the way. In essence, it idiot-proofs your production process for people less familiar with it than you are.
Steps, Timing, and a Paper Trail
While ingredients and proportions are critical to creating your product, so is your process, and you need to ensure that people are following the right steps and timing for your recipe. A missed or misplaced step can result in a batch that doesn't meet your standards. And that can mean a huge loss in materials (ingredients), time, and, worst of all, fulfillment (delivery and sales).
With a batch control log, your production team has a way to track not only what needs to happen but also what actually is happening during a batch run. You and they can see exactly what materials to use for the run and can later review what happened during the run. As a result, you can better manage efficiency, costs, and even safety protocols.
The best logs will take you beyond the checklist. They'll allow you to combine and track even more information for the batch run itself and across the production run. They will, for example, let you account for the amount you've used of each ingredient to help with inventory and cost management. And they will let you enter lot codes for ingredients and assign codes to finished products so you can deal with potential recalls.
Batch Control Logs in ReciPal
While a batch control log can certainly be a discrete document or tool, in ReciPal we've linked it to the original recipe and given you the ability to create a full list of steps for your process out of the recipe itself. In your recipe ingredients, you can include food items, labor steps, mixing instructions, waiting times, or any other kind of step you need your team to follow, like swabbing equipment between batches for gluten-free processing. Those steps will appear in each log for every run for that product, so you never have to worry about whether or not your team has all the necessary information at hand to execute the run.
Because batch control logs are so essential to making the operations of a growing food business more reliable, ReciPal has made sure you have an easy, flexible, and robust way to take that next step toward consistent, efficient manufacturing. Give our inventory management software a shot or let us know how you manage and ensure quality in your food production process.