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Overcoming Marketing Compliance Risks in Food & Beverage Production

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In 2018 a 15-year-old girl died in the UK from eating a Pret a Manger baguette, which failed to list sesame seeds on the label.  The company had 9 complaints in total from people who experienced anaphylaxis as a result of consuming these baguettes and took over a year to update their labelling.  Where people’s lives are at stake, mistakes and slow reaction times such as Pret a Manger’s are not acceptable and pose a serious risk not only to the business but to people’s health.

Strict laws and guidelines governing how ingredients and health claims must be communicated exist in many countries.  There is an expectation from consumers that manufacturers adhere to these laws and false advertising or mistakes on packaging bring with them significant risks, not only to consumers, but to all stakeholders in the supply chain.

While this is the case, if you walk into any supermarket there are bound to be dozens of products on the shelf which don’t meet compliance requirements.  Not only can they harm the consumer and result in a lawsuit, but also slow down the production process so that windows for delivery are missed.  Many of these errors are a result of poor systems throughout creative production, which can be solved by implementing Marketing Operations Software.  Incorrect labelling is less likely to occur when creative development, storage and distribution occur within the one system.

Comprehensive online briefing forms ensure that the correct information is collected from the beginning, including disclaimers, nutritional diagrams or ingredients lists from databases.  Work can then automatically be routed to legal or compliance for sign off before being made available for printing. This process all occurs online so down time between each step is reduced – the minute labelling is approved production can begin.

The same goes for reprints of packaging or updating creative. A robust system for Digital Asset Management empowers your team by ensuring that signed off creative, marketing material, product labels, signage and point of sale designs can be stored and easily found within the one platform.  It is the single source of truth for creative content with version control and permissions, act as gatekeeper ensuring that only the most recent approved version can be accessed.

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Where once food was produced and consumed locally, it may be grown, produced, packaged and consumed across multiple countries at a time, all with different laws and requirements.  This makes local area marketing difficult to manage and get right – especially when teams other than marketing are accessing and distributing creative material.  Creative templates solve this problem by giving users outside of the core marketing team freedom to update creative, without compromising legal and brand parameters.

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Yet, ensuring that new creative meets regulatory requirements alone is not enough.  Updates to legislation around food advertising and packaging are frequent and often catch producers off guard.  Having a system quickly find and update assets using keywords and filters for frequent searches such as ingredients or location help you stay up to date.  Expiry and review dates on content also provides you with a process to review what is being put out to the public.

In food and beverage production the likelihood of these risks are significant and skyrocket with incomplete systems for creative production and distribution.  Technology closes this loop by placing processes and controls around developing, reviewing, updating and distributing marketing material and labelling content.

Read our whitepaper to learn more about how Marketing Operations Software can assist in preventing a marketing compliance breach for food and beverage companies.

Contact us to find out how we can help you transform your marketing operations with Digital Asset ManagementBrandHub (Brand Management Software) and Marketing Operations Software (project management, workflows, creative approvals and more).

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