Tools and Solutions – Internal Traceability

  • Judith KirknessEmail author
Part of the Food Microbiology and Food Safety book series (FMFS)


Internal traceability is a requirement for food processors, packers, distributors, and others in the food supply chain. It involves tracking all inputs, where those inputs were used in manufacturing (as relevant) and all finished goods made. Further, it requires that records be kept of where all finished products go. This is so you can trace forwards and backwards the history of all inputs and outputs through each facility, in the event of a food safety issue.

While GFSI certification programs require that traceability be in place, they say very little about how to accomplish it. As such, food processors are meeting these requirements with everything from paper systems to sophisticated verified traceability software solutions using a variety of hardware from scanners to tablets to computers and weigh scales with labelling equipment. With so many software and hardware options available, deciding what technology will work best for a business can be a daunting task. This chapter explores the tools available for managing internal traceability and how to evaluate the strength of each solution when comparing options. Using the sample script provided, a comparison of options can be made. With assurance that the one up and one down traceability requirements can be met, software and hardware searches can proceed to compare any additional business benefits the tool can offer beyond recall reporting.


Internal traceability Barcode scanning One up One down Software Hardware Verification GS1-128 EDI MH10 ASN 


  1. 1.
    Kirkness JL (2015) The traceability factor: increase profits through tracking, 3rd edn. CharlstonGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    McEntire J, Bhatt T Pilot projects for improving product tracing along the food supply system [Internet]. Chicago: Institute of Food Technologists. 2012 [cited 2015 Apr 27]. Available from: Accessed 13 Apr 2015

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Traceability MattersBramptonCanada

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