How to make your supply chain more resilient in 2021

Following a testing 2020 for many businesses, the new year brings with it the opportunity to identify priorities for the year ahead and focus on building a more resilient and efficient supply chain, to secure continuity of supply.

Resilience is currently an increasing concern in supply chains, never before have we faced more complex, changing conditions than during the Covid-19 pandemic, Brexit deal and U.S. - China trade war. Such disturbances need to be handled in the right way, compelling the use of solutions that can support resilient supply chain decisions.

The UK Border closures in December was a stark reminder of food supply chain fragility. Fruit and veg cargo needed to be flown into the UK to keep perishable supply chains moving, while ports were gridlocked. During the first lockdown of the pandemic we also saw how consumer panic buying and stockpiling caused mass disruption on the continuity of supply. Longer term the impact can be seen with the shift in consumer behaviour, as uncertainty drives people to seek safety, trust, and healthiness from the products they purchase.

Rick Sanderson, Food Forensics explains ‘The first quarter of this year must be considered high risk for food fraud on a global basis. Opportunists will be looking to exploit the disruption and with greater certainty on the horizon there is a shrinking window of opportunity for exploitation, where detection and deterrent may not be receiving the focus it should.  Combine this with high numbers of businesses feeling the economic squeeze and the conditions remain ripe for fraudulent activity.

Current challenges facing businesses in the wake of Covid-19 

“The aftermath of the pandemic will unfold and what we must remember is that vaccines will not be available in many parts of the developing world for some time,” says Chris Elliott, professor of food safety at Queen’s University Belfast. “In terms of food safety and food fraud, serious issues may emerge. These will be a result of greatly reduced audits and inspections, many food commodities being caught in transportation difficulties and shortages of some food types.”

It is clear to see that Covid-19 will continue to challenge businesses and combined with new trade agreements this may provide an increased opportunity for fraud, threatening the continuity of supply. With technology to improve supplier management, mitigate risk and provide full supply chain transparency, Greenlight Supplier Management can help your business have a more resilient supply chain in 2021.

What can you do to protect your business?

Collaborate directly with your supply chain

Greenlight Supplier Management can provide a deeper understanding of who is in your supply chain and where in the world they are. The visual maps can track products back to source, giving you total transparency across your supply chain and peace of mind that should a risk arise, you can immediately provide chain of custody insight on each of your products. 

Track and measure compliance in key areas

Tracking and measuring compliance in key areas from start to finish with self assessment questionnaires and system-generated alerts, will enhance compliance and benchmark performance across your supply chain, driving continuous improvement.

Ensure continuity of supply

In order for product to move quickly and efficiently all stakeholders in your supply chain need to be ‘approved to supply’, the most efficient way to do this is by working interactively with your suppliers, managing the entire process in Greenlight Supplier Management, a cloud-based, collaborative environment from start to finish.

Sources – Food forensics – food risk update January 2021, European Commission; fraud, monitoring and controls; food fraud

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