FlexXray Blog

Foreign Material Is the Leading Cause of Food Recalls in 2019

Posted by FlexXray on Jul 23, 2019 12:24:07 PM

At a time when methods for detecting foreign materials in food is more sophisticated and accurate than ever before, it would seem that the incidents of contamination by physical hazards would be declining.

But greater capabilities to detect particles in food could actually be triggering more recalls, says Chris Keith, VP of Sales, Marketing and Customer Service for FlexXray.

According to information released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, foreign materials were the leading cause of food contamination during the first half of 2019.

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Topics: X-ray Food Inspection, Recalls and Lawsuits

The Impact of Food Waste and Why It Matters to Your Company

Posted by Chris Keith on Jul 9, 2019 8:59:00 AM

Food waste in the U.S. has become a significant problem from both an economic and environmental perspective. About 40% of the food grown domestically ends up in landfills, which means we’re throwing away an estimated $218 billion worth of food each year. That’s 1.3% of America’s gross domestic product.

The cost for food companies continues climbing; according to the Food Waste Reduction Alliance (FWRA), food manufacturers generate 53 pounds of food waste per every thousand dollars of company revenue. While 43% of food waste comes from families who throw out the food and beverages they’ve bought, the larger percentage of waste comes from manufacturers, retailers and restaurants.

As the industry gains greater awareness about how much food waste is costing food companies, more initiatives are being developed to curb it. Such measures not only lower the amount of waste being generated, but also improve the financial health of food manufacturers, both individually and for the industry as a whole.  

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Topics: Food Waste

What Increasing Line Speed Means for Meat Safety

Posted by FlexXray on Jun 19, 2019 7:41:30 AM

Recent changes to regulations affecting line speed in meat plants have raised concerns about meat safety. These changes potentially add new dangers for food producers who are purchasing the meat, since many believe it will dramatically raise the risk of contaminated food entering our supply chain. Under these new regulations, plant managers will have more control over inspections, and many federal inspectors will be replaced with plant employees.

Last September, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) published a notice that it would allow certain poultry producers to increase line speeds to 175 birds per minute, up from the current line speed that capped at 140 birds per minute. To do so, plant operators must meet certain criteria, such as a history of regulatory compliance, being able to prove that they had the proper equipment, procedures and technologies in place that would allow for faster line speeds without compromising safety and being able to provide documentation that the increased line speed would not affect employee safety or interfere with inspection procedures.

The move to increase the line speed was controversial, especially given that the poultry industry has a high rate of workplace injury — even higher than construction, landscaping and sawmill worksites. Opponents of the measure to increase line speed have voiced concern that it could expose workers to even more injuries and illness.

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Topics: Meat and Poultry

How to Detect and Manage the Challenge of Plastic in Food

Posted by FlexXray on May 27, 2019 9:43:00 AM

There’s no question that innovations in plastic are changing the food industry. Plastic is paving the way for new, lightweight forms of packaging to be created, as well as providing more flexible choices in equipment. Plastic products make processing and packaging foods easier and more cost-effective .

However, plastic contamination is also creating growing challenges for food manufacturers. How can companies detect and manage the growing challenge of plastic in food?

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Topics: X-ray Food Inspection, Processed Foods, Recalls and Lawsuits

FlexXray® Acquisition of Accu-ray Provides Food Industry a National Network of Foreign Contaminant Identification and Recovery Services

Posted by FlexXray on May 14, 2019 1:20:53 PM

(Arlington, Texas, May 13, 2019) – FlexXray, the nation’s leading X-ray inspection and recovery service for food companies, announced today that it has acquired Illinois-based Accu-ray, a leading provider of inspection solutions for food, pharmaceutical and automotive manufacturers throughout the U.S. and Canada. The combined company will operate as FlexXray® effective immediately.

FlexXray helps manufacturing facilities quickly and cost-effectively detect and recover foreign material contamination that can occur during production or packaging. The company works with more than 900 production plants in the U.S., including 90 percent of the top 25 protein and processed-food producers in the country.

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Topics: X-ray Food Inspection

FlexXray® Hires President to Lead Continued Growth and Expansion

Posted by FlexXray on Mar 4, 2019 11:36:00 AM

Randy Jesberg joins the executive team to lead company through current growth and future expansion.

(Arlington, Texas, March 4, 2019) – As part of its ongoing growth, FlexXray®, the nation’s largest provider of X-ray inspection and recovery services for food companies, has added the role of president to its executive structure. Randy Jesberg, who brings 35 years of executive experience in sales, marketing, software engineering and analytics will fill the new position.

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Topics: Uncategorized

Reputation Management Tips for Food Companies

Posted by Chris Keith on Feb 18, 2019 2:04:33 PM

A recall of any product potentially has a significant negative impact on its manufacturer. Recalls are expensive, not only from the financial hit they incur in lost sales and other direct costs, but also in the lasting impact recalls can have on a brand’s reputation. Without an effective online reputation management strategy, food producers can suffer even greater losses.

Determining the cost of a food crisis such as a recall is difficult, because it goes far beyond the hard costs. Food Safety Magazine identifies recalls as “the food industry’s biggest threat to profitability,” and the numbers back up that observation. The magazine reports that the average recall costs a company at least $10 million, which includes both the direct costs of recalling and destroying the food, as well as notifying the necessary regulatory agencies, the supply chain and the consumers.

The bill continues rising from there; there’s the expense of labor to complete all of the above actions, as well as the cost of running replacement product. But perhaps the greatest cost — and the one that is most difficult to manage — is brand reputation.

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Topics: Recalls and Lawsuits

How to Prevent Food Contamination In Your Facility

Posted by Chris Keith on Jan 3, 2019 8:00:00 AM

With 600 million people around the world affected by contaminated food each year, it’s crucial for food manufacturers to have a Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) plan in place to help prevent contamination.

It's also essential for production facilities to ensure they're working with vendors and suppliers that are HACCP-compliant. Knowing that products, equipment and even uniforms are handled and monitored properly guarantees that contamination risks aren’t being passed along to the food supply.

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Topics: FDA Regulations

What Happens With Contaminated Food After Foreign Material Inspection?

Posted by Chris Keith on Dec 27, 2018 8:00:00 AM

No food manufacturer wants to deal with contaminated product, but when foreign material contamination happens, they need to have a process in place. Foreign material in food is something that occurs in many different ways and at every stage of the production process.

Contaminants can make their way into food in the field, during transportation to the production facility or at numerous points in the manufacturing process; they can be caused by anything from human error to mechanical failure.

Regardless of how the foreign material gets into the food, the big concern for plant management is the same: What should the next steps be? 

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Topics: X-ray Food Inspection, Meat and Poultry, Processed Foods

X-ray Machine Rentals: What Food Safety Professionals Need to Know

Posted by FlexXray on Dec 11, 2018 1:28:00 PM

X-ray inspection is becoming increasingly popular as food manufacturers learn more about its capabilities. X-ray inspection machines are designed to detect foreign material more effectively than other methods and, therefore, are the most efficient way to handle issues of physical contamination

When a food manufacturing facility discovers it has a foreign material problem, X-ray inspection is the most reliable solution to help pinpoint and eliminate the issue.

However, there are certain factors to be considered when deciding to use X-ray inspection. Not all X-ray inspections are created equal, and knowing the options and the capabilities of X-ray equipment is critical to deciding what steps to take.

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Topics: X-ray Food Inspection

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