Where does nanotechnology fit in the ingredients equation?

Up until 20 years ago, not much was happening in the field of nano technology as it related to food and beverages. However, in the past 15 to 20 years there have been a number of academic papers published, as well as references made, with regard to the technology and how it can be applied to this industry.

In the December issue of Food & Beverage Industry News, Dr Julian McClements – distinguished professor at Department of Food Science at the University of Massachusetts, adjunct professor, School of Food Science and Bioengineering at Zhejaing Gongshang Uni, China, and visiting professor, Harvard University, talked about the future of food. And part of that future included nanotechnology.

Read more

Adelaide Food Fringe Festival returns

Adelaide Food Fringe festival today announced a return for a second shot at an inaugural year with an expanded festival program of 9 days from Friday 7 May to Sunday 16 May 2021, a celebration of pubs called “International Pub Week” and a new poster featuring artwork by much-loved Adelaide artist, Billie Justice Thomson and the opening of all registrations for food and beverage events.

Read more

How the humble thermometer helps reduce food waste

A new training initiative based on the thermometer is about to be introduced to the Australian cold chain industry. It is seen as a practical move to help combat the country’s serious food loss and wastage problem, estimated to cost the country nearly $4 billion a year at farm gate value.
The Australian Food Cold Chain Council (AFCCC), the peak advocacy body comprising concerned industry leaders covering refrigeration assets, transport and food distribution, will release an online education program, Thermometers and the Cold Chain Practitioner this month.
The program is aimed squarely at those the AFCCC regards as the super heroes of the food cold chain process – the people who oversee the movement of food through refrigerated transports, loading docks and cold rooms across the nation.
Industry research convinced the AFCCC that Australia desperately needed a new Cold Food Code that should be adopted by industry to stimulate a nation-wide educational push to bring Australian cold chain practices up to the much higher international standard.
The educational program starting with temperature measurement is the first of a planned five-code series.
The AFCCC has invested in new online education software that will be used to develop training programs to support the release of the actual Code document that will cover temperature technologies and how they should be used for monitoring a variety of foods carried in the cold chain.
The initiative runs alongside the work being done by other authorities, including Food Innovation Australia (FIAL) and the Commonwealth Government, which has signed up to a United Nations treaty to halve food wastage by 2030.
Some of the rising levels of national food wastage is considered to be the result of poor temperature management, and poor understanding of how refrigeration works in a range of storage environments. This includes from cold storage rooms through to
trucks and trailers, and even home delivery vans.
Australia has world-class refrigeration and monitoring technologies, but the AFCCC believes industry will have to adopt serious training programs so that those responsible for moving food and pharmaceuticals around the country can get the best out of the available technologies.
Because of the vast distances in this country, food transport is a series of refrigerated events, in the hands of a range of stake holders.
Mangoes picked in the Northern Territory may be handled through stationary and mobile refrigerated spaces as many as 14 times by multiple owners on a 3,400 km journey to Melbourne.
If temperature abuse through poor refrigeration practices occurs in just one of those spaces, the losses at the consumer end are compounded, and shelf life can be either drastically reduced, or result in the whole load being sent to landfill.
People working at the coalface of the industry can sign on independently to do the course, which the AFCCC believes will be an important next phase in their professional journey. Kindred organisations involved in the cold chain will be encouraged to become retailers of the education program. Many industry groups have already signed up to help drive cold chain practitioners to the training program from their own websites.
There will only be modest charges for the course, which will help fund AFCCC’s continuing work on assembling the research and expertise to complete further parts of the overall Code of Practice. This will ultimately be gifted to the cold chain industry for the purposes of universal adoption.
The extent of food wastage in this country should not be under-estimated. It is almost criminal that one quarter of Australia’s production of fruit and vegetables are never eaten and end up in land fill or rotting at the farm gate.
This loss alone accounts for almost two million tonnes of otherwise edible food, worth
$3 billion.
A government-sponsored study released earlier in 2020 revealed that meat and seafood waste in the cold chain costs the country another $90 million and dairy losses total $70 million.
It’s not just the wasted food at stake. The impacts on greenhouse emissions, water usage and energy consumption will end up being felt nationwide.
The AFCCC was formed in mid 2017 by a cross section of industry leaders covering manufacturing, food transport, refrigeration and cold chain services.
The Council sees itself as an important part of the solution, encouraging innovation, compliance, waste reduction and safety across the Australian food cold chain.
The new Council is not about promoting an industry – it wants to change the industry for the better. It acknowledges that Australia’s track record in efficient cold food handling, from farm to plate, is far from perfect.

Surging demand for plant-based meat

The global meat sector at present is facing unprecedented level of disruption and competition, due to mounting growth of plant-based meat alternatives across many categories, according to market research company Future Market Insights. Earlier, plant-based meat alternative products warranted limited shelf space and were meant for niche consumers. With increased awareness of “Veganuary” multiple manufacturers have expanded new product line for plant-based products owing to increased vegan or indeed flexitarian diet.
The global food and beverage recent industry changes illustrate the growth in plant-based alternatives that has brought disruption. Companies across the spectrum are investing heavily in creating and acquiring new products and brands which will provide momentum to the surging consumer demand for plant-based beef products.
Key point from the plant-based beef market study

  • A latest study by an ESOMAR certified market research and consultancy company, forecasts impressive growth of the Plant Based Beef market at over 22.7% CAGR between 2020 and 2030
  • Based on the source, the soy-based protein segment holds the dominance in the market for plant based beef, while wheat-based protein segments are expected to grow prominently in the forecasted period of 2020-2030
  • Based on the product type, burger patty segment holds the dominance in the market for plant based beef
  • As alternate protein gains traction in the market owing to the increasing awareness about the environmental impact of food choices consumers make, the majority of the population is shifting towards plant based beef and is expected to gain traction in near future
  • Companies across the spectrum are investing heavily in creating and acquiring new products and brands which will provide momentum to the surging consumer demand for plant-based beef products

New product development fuelling plant-based products demand
Increasing demand for innovative products has paved the way for product development across frozen, chilled and ambient segments. This innovation helps consumers with a wider choice of brands and products, and allows plant-based beef to advance improved shelf space and recognition.
Read More: A bearing for all harvest seasons
UK is the global leader for vegan food launches. In 2019 approximately 18% of new food launches were vegan. Tesco has developed wicked kitchen range of meat-free products.
Who is winning?
A few of the leading players operating in the Plant Based Beef market are Impossible Foods, Gardein by Conagra Brands, MorningStar Farms, Archer Daniels Midland Company, Symrise, Roquette Frères S.A., Kellogg’s, Tyson Foods, Sotexpro SA, Crown Soya Protein Group, Puris Proteins, Ingredion, Beneo GmbH, Glanbia, Fuji Oil Co., and other players.
Several leading manufacturers of Plant Based Beef are focusing on partnering with prominent players in the market to increase its business footprints and to increase their production capacity. Leading players of Plant Based Beef are investing in research and development to produce organic, non-GMO ingredients for plant-based beef.

Rockwell Automation improves productivity and reduces risk with the release of PlantPAx 5.0

Rockwell Automation has released the PlantPAx 5.0 distributed control system (DCS). This latest DCS version from Rockwell Automation helps industrial producers positively impact the lifecycle of their plant operations with plant-wide and scalable systems to drive digital transformation and operational excellence.
New system capabilities help digitally transform operations by introducing process functionality native to the controller, improving the availability of system assets driving compliance in regulated industries, while enabling the adoption of analytics at all levels of the enterprise. Intuitive workflows and the use of industry-leading cybersecurity standards will help teams design, deploy, and support a DCS infrastructure which reduces time-to-market and helps plants realize profit at a faster rate.
“We’re excited to bring PlantPAx DCS 5.0 to our customers,” said Jim Winter, global process director, Rockwell Automation. “New system features are step changes in helping our customers lower the overall costs to design and commission. The functionality improves the overall effort to integrate the process control layer to the enterprise. By reducing the lifecycle cost of the system and lowering operational risks, we are continuing to find innovative ways to bring more value to end users.”
Process end users desire a system that offers the benefits of a modern experience without the burdens that come with a traditional DCS. The new 5.0 release innovates the modern DCS in the following areas:

  • Reduced Footprint
    • This release introduces new process controllers and extends the Logix family with cutting-edge processing power and capacity to reduce the complexity of PlantPAx architectures. This action reduces total cost of ownership of the system throughout the lifecycle.
  • Project Consistency
    • With native process instructions embedded in the controller firmware, project teams can adopt approaches to control strategies that drive consistency for individual projects or multi-site deployments. Consistency simplifies the lifecycle management of deployed systems as teams modernize their automation infrastructure. Consistency lowers total cost of ownership (TCO).
  • Streamlined Workflows
    • PlantPAx 5.0 provides improved design and operational user experiences. Development teams will realize savings in the configuration of instrumentation, alarms and diagnostic system elements. Operators will have the extended ability to view underlying control logic in a safe and secured manner. Maintenance will have controlled view access for troubleshooting.
  • TÜV -Certified for Cybersecurity
    • To operate at peak performance and minimize cybersecurity threats, PlantPAx 5.0 system architectures are TÜV certified to the international standard ISA-99/IEC 62443-3-3 which provides guidance on the implementation of an electronically secured system.
  • Analytics Enabled
    • Process end users recognize the value of analytics as an essential strategy to realize profit in their process operations. The PlantPAx 5.0 release has purpose-built frameworks that easily connect live and historical data from the DCS into reporting and analytical tools.
    • Enables extended experiences, such as Augmented Reality, using workflows aligned with process strategies controlling plant operations.
    • Allows extensible scalable analytic packages leveraging predictive and prescriptive models for process applications such as soft sensors, anomaly detection, or model predictive control.

As producers continue their digital transformation journey, the advances from this system release will help them unlock value and reduce overall costs at all phases of the plant lifecycle. For more information about PlantPAx DCS 5.0, please visit rok.auto/plantpax.

 

Sodexo gets on board food waste wagon

Sodexo, a company that specialises in quality of life services, has pledged to purchase at least 75 tonnes of surplus food by August 2021, through Yume’s surplus food online marketplace, as part of its ongoing efforts to lead the charge in corporate sustainability.
Yume’s online marketplace allows suppliers and buyers to connect with each other to prevent high quality, edible food from going to waste.
Yume food purchases are made by a number of Sodexo’s mining villages sites across the country, including Cloudbreak, Degrussa and Karntama in Western Australia, Olympic Dam in South Australia and Tanami in Northern Territory.
Sodexo and Yume first partnered in mid-2018 and Sodexo was the first corporate buyer to make a Yume pledge for future food purchases. Since, Sodexo has purchased more than 115 tonnes of surplus produce through Yume.
“7.3 million tonnes of food is wasted every year in Australia, of which 4.1 million tonnes is from the commercial food sector. Through the purchase of top-quality surplus food through Yume, Sodexo has become a leader in sustainable procurement and given hundreds of businesses a lifeline., said Katy Barfield, Founder & CEO, Yume.

Sodexo’s Tanami Village has purchased 8,123kg of surplus food through Sodexo’s supply chain.
Following a successful trial, Sodexo’s team at Tanami now purchases salmon, export quality pork, diced beef, chicken and more, ordering in bulk and building the products into their quarterly menus.
“We were surprised at how much food would normally have gone to waste. We now purchase almost a tonne of poultry every six to eight weeks that would have otherwise gone to waste. With Yume part of our main supply chain, we’re looking at how we can incorporate even more products as we review our menu each quarter,” said Tristan Allen, Tanami site manager, Sodexo Australia.

Sodexo’s mission to reduce waste extends across its operations in Australia.
The company recently announced it helped reduce the production of regular plastics by 156 tonnes and offset 1,122 tonnes of carbon, as part of its partnership with packaging provider BioPak.
Sodexo has also announced the deployment of its data-driven food waste prevention program, WasteWatch powered by Leanpath, at 140 food service locations across Asia-Pacific, including Australia, by January of 2021.
The WasteWatch program will enable sites to capture food waste data, identify opportunities to reduce waste and drive operational and behavioural changes.
“Collectively, corporate Australia still has a long way to go to achieve environmentally-conscious operations and supply chains. By partnering with providers like Yume, BioPak, and Leanpath we’re taking steps towards a more sustainable future. Our work with our sustainability partners serves as a reminder of the capacity of corporates to contribute to the fight against waste.” said Mark Chalmers, CFO & country president, Sodexo Australia.

Lower dollar sees “spectacular” food and beverage export increase

The food and beverage sector has benefited handsomely from the lower dollar, according to a new report on the sector, with exports up 28 per cent.

The ABC reports that the Australian Food and Grocery Council’s seventh annual State of The Industry report has found a “spectacular” surge in trade, with the trade surplus for food and beverages nearly doubled and total exports up from $20 billion to $26 billion. Beef exports recorded a strong increase among exports.

"So there is double digit growth across a whole range of categories including some you would not expect, like beverages, biscuits and confectionary, sauces and condiments and a whole range of processed foods," the ABC reports AFGC chief executive Gary Dawson as saying.

According to the report, the sector is worth $119 billion, and represents nearly a third of all manufacturing in the country. Over 40 per cent of its more than 322,000 employees live in regional areas. An additional 3,183 employees were hired during the year.

The drop in the Australian dollar relative to the US currency, from a $US 1.10 peak in 2011, has been a welcome relief for many.

Simplot, for example, had previously been in danger of closing its Devonport and Bathurst processing sites.

“…our estimation at the time was that the bad times were here to stay and it is now paying its way," said the company’s managing director, Terry O’Brien.

To read the State of The Industry 2015 report, click here.

 

Canadians develop method to reduce acrylamide in bread by 80%

Canadian-based Renaissance Ingredients has said it has perfected its acrylamide-reducing (AR) baker’s yeast for applications in the global bread and baked goods market.

The company’s non-GMO AR baker’s yeast strains (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) have been found to reduce acrylamide by up to 95% in a variety of food products by degrading the precursor compound asparagine.

In this test in both white and whole wheat bread and toast, the use of AR baker’s yeast delivered an average reduction in acrylamide of 80% relative to conventional baker’s yeast.

This reduction was observed in the bread prior to toasting, as well as across three degrees of toasting (low, medium and high/dark). Importantly, no changes to the bread-making or baking processes other than the use of AR yeast were required in order to achieve these reductions.
 
“We are very pleased with the performance of our AR yeast in bread and toast. These results confirm the efficacy, simplicity and seamlessness of using our AR yeast in all varieties of baked goods,” said Renaissance Ingredients’ President, Dr. Matthew Dahabieh.

“We are also exceptionally pleased with the consistency exhibited by our AR yeast in reducing acrylamide across all levels of toasting. In most cases, the acrylamide content of toasted bread made with our AR yeast is less than that of untoasted bread made with conventional baker’s yeast. Essentially, our AR yeast eliminates the acrylamide potential of toasting conventional bread.”
 
Highly elevated acrylamide levels in toasted bread
It is well known that cooking at high temperatures significantly increases the acrylamide content of food. For example, in Renaissance’s tests, white bread baked with conventional yeast contained 30 parts per billion (ppb) of acrylamide, while dark toast made from the same bread increased the acrylamide content by 6.5 times to 195 ppb. In the case of whole wheat bread, dark toast had higher acrylamide levels of 8.9 times (34 ppb in bread increases to 301 ppb in dark toast).

However, when produced with AR yeast, dark toast made from the white and whole wheat bread (that contained just 5 ppb prior to toasting) contained only 36 and 40 ppb of acrylamide, respectively, after toasting.
 
“Our studies show that common restaurant and consumer cooking practices can result in highly elevated levels of acrylamide in toasted bread. However, our data also show that AR yeast has the ability to mitigate this ‘acrylamide potential’ in baked goods without any changes to the cooking process. This greatly reduces the health risk that acrylamide formed during cooking poses to end consumers,” added Dahabieh. “We are now looking to work with collaborative partners at the pilot and industrial scale to confirm and refine the efficacy of AR yeast in these settings.”
 
AR yeast applications: baked goods, potato products, snack foods and coffee
Renaissance Ingredients’ AR yeast strains are traditional baker’s yeast with an accelerated natural ability to consume the amino acid asparagine, the precursor to acrylamide. In baked goods in which yeast has always been used as an ingredient, AR yeast can seamlessly replace conventional baker’s yeast with no disruption to the baking process.

Importantly, AR yeast also can be used in foods in which yeast is not normally an ingredient. Renaissance Ingredients has conducted numerous successful studies on the feasibility of using AR yeast in novel ways for foods containing yeast extract, chemically leavened foods, or foods exposed to soaking steps during processing. These foods include potato-based products such as potato chips and French fries, savory snack foods, cereal products and coffee.
 
“Our in-house studies highlight the versatility and efficacy of our AR yeast in reducing acrylamide not only in baked goods and toast, but also in potato products, snack foods, cereal products and coffee. We are now looking to demonstrate this efficacy in pilot-scale trials by working closely with additional interested industry partners,” adds Dahabieh.

Eliminate contamination with new cleaning head

 
Now available from Tecpro Australia, the Sanitor Tank Cleaner is designed to provide the highest possible standard of hygiene and sanitation.
 
Specifically designed to comply with the highest standards of sanitation and hygiene, the Sanitor is constructed completely from 100 per cent AISI 316 Stainless Steel. It features a streamlined external design to ensure no residue can build up and contaminate the wash. The Sanitor’s advanced design also eliminates the need for ball bearings. This greatly increases unit life while preventing the possibility of contamination associated with bearing degradation.
 

The Sanitor features a clever pressure regulation system, which ensures constant, slow rotation at pressures ranging from 2 to 20 Bar, with flow rates from 24 L/min. This low jet peripheral velocity is optimised to maintain high impingement and allow longer chemical dwell times for improved cleaning efficiency.
 
The Sanitor is ideal for burst rinsing or prolonged washing with the precision slots in the rotating barrel producing strong impact fan jets that scrub the vessel in a 360º wash pattern. The wide operating pressure band makes the unit suitable for a variety of small to medium-sized vessels, including food and beverage storage tanks, transport containers and chemical reactors.
 

Lightweight and extremely compact, the low wear design requires minimal maintenance.  It has a 3/8” BSP connection and requires a minimum manhole/flange opening of 32mm for unit insertion. At a pressure of 10 Bar, the Sanitor has a cleaning radius of 2.4m and wetting radius of 3.6m. It is suitable for working temperatures up to 95º C and ambient temperatures of up to 140º.
 
The highly flexible and durable Sanitor is the perfect tank cleaning solution for the food, beverage, pharmaceutical, chemical, coatings and transport industries, or wherever rigorous standards of hygiene and product purity are essential.

 

Cadbury announces Olympics ambassador sponsorship

Confectionery brand Cadbury has named Australian Olympic champions Sally Pearson and Anna Meares as ambassadors in the lead-up to the 2016 Rio Olympics.

The chocolate-maker announced the champion hurdler and track cyclist as ambassadors yesterday as part of its “bring the joy” campaign.

Lauren Fildes, chief of strategic partnerships and events at Mondelēz International (Cadbury’s parent company), said that the sponsorship was a way of expressing the brand’s identity through to the Olympics.

“Sponsorships, really are also there to be relevant at a time a major event is on,” she said.

“And obviously there’s not a better event that happens every four years where the world comes together and celebrates athletes at such a high level.”

Hands-free waste bins that promote food safety

Rubbermaid Commercial Products (RCP), has released the Slim Jim Step-On refuse containers in Australia. The newest addition to RCP’s hands-free waste management portfolio, the Slim Jim Step-On is designed to satisfy the diverse needs of any facility, maximising space efficiency with a 20 per cent smaller footprint* and a slim profile ensuring a perfect fit in even the tightest spaces. 
 
 “The Slim Jim Step-On container is designed with a slimmer profile and fills a gap in the market for smarter, safer, aesthetic refuse containers. Foodservice, healthcare and commercial environments demand hands-free waste management solutions that enhance any environment,” said Kristine Sickels, Senior Vice President of Marketing, RCP. 

“Slim Jim Step-On container’s slim profile and intuitive design helps to reduce the effort and space needed to manage refuse, ultimately improving productivity.”
 
Enhancing worker satisfaction and wellbeing, the hands-free Slim Jim Step-On container features a built-in lid dampener that ensures a quiet and controlled lid closer that minimises noise. The lid’s hinge is located inside the container, which prevents wall damage compared to traditional receptacles.
 
The Slim Jim Step-On container is available in five sizes and in front-step or end-step styles to meet a variety of space requirements and applications. Premium colour and finish options enhance the aesthetics of any environment.

Nestlé enters global super-premium chocolate category

Nestlé has announced its entry into the global super-premium chocolate category with its almost 200-year old Swiss chocolate brand Cailler.

Founded by François-Louis Cailler in 1819, Cailler is Switzerland’s oldest existing chocolate brand. It is still produced at its original factory in Broc, ‘Maison Cailler’, using milk from local farms and high quality cocoa from the Nestlé Cocoa Plan.

Cailler’s global chocolate range features artwork hand-designed by Swiss artisan, Marianne Dubuis, who incorporates the Swiss art of découpage (paper-cutting) into her silhouette-based designs. Each one tells a part of the Cailler story.

“We’re pleased to introduce Cailler to the wider world” said Sandra Martinez, Head of Nestlé’s global confectionery business.

“It has all the characteristics of a super-premium product – a high quality product with a unique brand story and image. We believe it has significant global potential.”

Smith’s Chips factory in WA to close

Smith’s Snackfood Company will shut its Smith’s Chips factory in Canning Vale next year and, as a result, 300 workers will lose their jobs.

The West Australian reports that the company told workers the news at a meeting yesterday at 8am.

The job losses, which will be staggered until the factory closes for good late next year, will come from a range of roles including factory and administrative roles.

“Following a strategic review of its manufacturing operations across Australia, The Smith’s Snackfood Company has announced its intention to close its manufacturing facility at Canning Vale in Western Australia,” a Smith’s spokeswoman said in a statement.

 “This difficult decision was made with careful consideration, and The Smiths Snackfood Company will provide outplacement services and redundancy support to affected employees.”

The closure will not affect the company’s operations in the Eastern states.

The closure will also affect the Western Australian potato growers who currently supply the Canning Vale factory with about 12,000 tonnes of potatoes per year.

One such grower, Gary Bendotti of Bendotti Exporters told the ABC he had been supplying Smith’s for decades and the closure will hit his company hard.

Another grower, Manjimup Shire president Wade DeCampo told the ABC, "Smith's has been going through an Australia-wide review and Smith's is owned by Pepsico, which as we all know is a multinational in America and they take no prisoners unfortunately, and today we are being cut loose."

Metal and X-ray detectable broom

Featuring metal detectable and X-ray materials, Detectaclean’s new Total MDX Brushware from Hill Brush is the biggest innovations since the invention of resin-set bristles. Effective in both wet and dry conditions, the metal detectable and X-ray components, which have been independently tested, have proved to be effective when metal detection machines are correctly calibrated.

The metal Detectable and X-ray brush back and filaments held in place by detectable Resin-Set DRS (Dual Retention System) technology, Detectaclean’s new brush ware and cleaning products are fully HACCP-compliant and made entirely of FDA/EU-approved materials.

The detectable resin inhibits bacterial growth and accumulation of contaminants via its anti-microbial properties, whilst providing an incredibly strong retention system. Autoclavable at 134°C, Total MDX Brushware ensures your regimes are optimal and avoid contamination, for the ultimate in hygiene safety and technology.

Nestlé Institute of Health Sciences enters into agreement to combat Alzheimer’s

The Nestlé Institute of Health Sciences SA (NIHS), a research institute of the global food maker Nestlé, has signed a research collaboration agreement with AC Immune SA – a leading Lausanne-based biopharmaceutical company focused on neurodegenerative diseases. 

The aim of the collaboration is to develop a sensitive, minimally invasive Tau diagnostic assay for early Alzheimer’s disease (AD) by applying Nestlé’s proprietary multiplexed ultrasensitive antibody technology platform.

Tangles of Tau proteins are recognised as one of two major hallmarks of neurodegeneration, the other being beta-amyloid (Abeta) plaques. 

Tangles and other abnormal forms of Tau protein accumulate inside the brain cells and spread between cells of people with Alzheimer’s disease over a long period of time. It is now well established that Tau correlates well with cognitive decline and disease progression. Furthermore, Tau may develop into a suitable biomarker for early diagnosis of the disease.

Ed Baetge, Head of NIHS said: “Our overarching goal at NIHS is to develop nutritional approaches and technologies that help people maintain or improve their cognitive vigour especially for early diagnosis and targeted intervention to combat this global health problem”.

ACCC concerned over implementation of Food and Grocery code

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is investigating reports about the approach supermarket retailers are taking to implement the Food and Grocery Code of Conduct (Code).

ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said, “The aim of the Code is to redress the imbalance in bargaining power that can exist between suppliers and large grocery retailers by prohibiting certain types of unfair conduct”.

“The Code imposes a duty to deal with suppliers in good faith and we are concerned by reports we have received from suppliers that suggest that some retailers have not got off to a good start when it comes to implementing the Code,” Mr Sims said.

“The ACCC has concerns as to the manner in which some retailers, in particular Woolworths and Aldi, are presenting new Grocery Supply Agreements (GSAs), which might give the impression that the supplier is not able to negotiate the terms of the GSA.”

“The ACCC is also concerned about the low level of detail provided in some GSAs about the circumstances in which certain payments may arise.”

The Code sets out a number of prohibitions on, for example, requiring a payment for wastage that occurs at the premises of the retailer. While it is possible for retailers and suppliers to opt out of such prohibitions, this can only occur if the opt outs are agreed, if the agreement sets out the circumstances in which the opt out applies and if the payment is reasonable in the circumstances.

“One of the purposes of the Code is to provide certainty to suppliers, who are often in a much weaker bargaining position when dealing with retailers. In order to provide that certainty, the ACCC expects retailers to set out the circumstances in which they will seek payments from suppliers,” Mr Sims said.

The Code requires that retailers offer code-compliant GSAs. Suppliers should not feel compelled to sign these agreements and should seek advice before signing them. In particular, the Code will confer protections on suppliers 12 months after a retailer has signed up to the Code, regardless of whether a supplier has accepted a code-compliant GSA.

The ACCC said it has written to retailers about the manner in which they purport to be giving effect to the Code. The retailers have responded providing their new GSAs and the correspondence they have sent to suppliers offering the new GSAs. 

The said ACCC said it will continue to monitor compliance with the code.

tna appoints dedicated AP processing manager

Packaging and processing solutions provider, tna has appointed John Van Duin as its new group solutions manager – processing for Asia Pacific. 

Being part of Florigo Industry B.V., (a leading food processing specialist recently acquired by tna), John will head up the company’s processing division for this region. 

John has a long history with Asian Pacific customers and has an in-depth understanding of the key influences on the current market. 

This, coupled with his exceptional processing knowledge, means customers and prospects in Asia Pacific can now benefit from a dedicated regional processing specialist to support them in the development of modular solutions in both processing and packaging.

With a background in mechanical engineering and international sales, John brings more than 30 years of experience in the food industry. Having worked for world-renowned specialty equipment and systems suppliers in the potato and vegetable processing segments, he possesses a wealth of expertise in energy, steam and condensate systems  ̶  a clear benefit in his new role as tna’s processing specialist for Asia Pacific. John, with his customer centric ethos, will provide customers in the region with a high level of on-the-ground support in this growing market.

Michael Green, managing director at tna comments: “We are thrilled to welcome John into the tna family as part of the Florigo team. His experience, product and market knowledge and his enthusiasm will be a great asset to our team, enabling us to drive our Asia Pacific business forward.”