Nutreco company, Marine Harvest launched a major new food quality system, NuTrace®, during the Brussels Seafood Exposition, on 6 May 2003.
NuTrace is a company-wide integrated food quality management system now being implemented by Marine Harvest and its sister companies in Nutreco Aquaculture. Speaking at the launch, Hans den Bieman, Chief Operating Officer of Nutreco Aquaculture, said, “NuTrace is the reality of our passion for food quality. For consumers, quality is the most important aspect of the food they eat.”
“Nutreco Aquaculture is active throughout the value chain for salmon and other species and is able to apply the unique NuTrace quality concept from feed right through to further processed products.” Bill Kuckuck, Managing Director Marine Harvest Europe, explained. “We have comprehensive food quality control and can offer information to support all our products. Details will be adapted to meet the needs of specific markets.
“NuTrace sets our standards, specifies the procedures and holds the information. We grouped the essential components of NuTrace in four categories, visualized as pillars. Together they provide the core NuTrace values. We can add further characteristics to a particular product to suit individual customers such as retailers or food service chains. NuTrace is dynamic and will evolve as knowledge develops and in line with changing expectations and requirements of customers, consumers and regulators.”
The four pillars are NuTrace Certified Quality, NuTrace Monitoring, NuTrace Tracking & Tracing and NuTrace Risk Management.
NuTrace Certified Quality begins with setting minimum standards, such as ISO 9001 and HACCP certification.
The NuTrace Monitoring program is based on the legal demands of national governments, including the USA and Japan, and transnational bodies such as the European Commission. Monitoring of components for which there are no legal specification follows the recommendations of the Codex Alimentarius Commission. Individual customer specifications are added as well.
In addition to the core list of undesirable substances that businesses must monitor for, Nutreco Aquaculture has specified the analytical method to be used and identified appropriate laboratories to carry out the analyses. The Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) ensures the data generated by these analyses can be gathered into one database. This makes the interpretation and management of the data more efficient.
The ultimate objective of the monitoring programmes is to check the levels of undesirable substances. Should any exceed the specified limits, an alert can be sent promptly to all relevant stakeholders.
NuTrace is being rolled out through Nutreco Aquaculture following a pilot project on tracking and tracing that ran in Marine Harvest Norway. The NuTrace Tracking & Tracing system sorts and stores information on all fish classes as they progress from breeding through to harvest and then through processing to distribution. It includes information from the Skretting feed plants. As NuTrace is implemented through all locations it will enable Marine Harvest to offer customers consistent food quality standards on a global basis.
All data is held on a central server and will play a vital role in swift identification of products and locations if ever the recall procedures of NuTrace Risk Management are needed. This feature was demonstrated through an online demonstration at the launch.
“NuTrace will be a source of confidence in our products among our customers, and consumers, and it sets new food quality management standards for food products from modern aquaculture,” concludes Bill Kuckuck.