Dairy RegTech 2022
Strong culture, strengthened food safety: The Dairy RegTech 2022 story
Dairy RegTech 2022 is a Dairy Food Safety Victoria initiative for the future regulation of the Victorian dairy industry. Dairy RegTech 2022 integrates performance data (indicators of process and product related risk) and measures of behaviour (food safety culture i.e. behavioural driven risks) to verify commitment to and achievement of regulatory food safety compliance across the entire dairy supply chain, rather than solely focusing on audits.
This initiative builds on existing capability - using data already collected by industry, using DFSV’s knowledge base gained through auditing and extending DFSV’s business processes to capture data and do analysis (e.g. benchmarking and trending). It also uses the opportunities provided by digital technology to streamline information collection and reporting.
What is new is the partnership with industry in developing, piloting and implementing a different approach, the strong understanding by DFSV and industry of the importance of food safety culture in food assurance systems and importantly incorporating food safety culture into operational and decision-making frameworks.
DFSV is working on a two-year strategy to implement Dairy RegTech 2022 and commenced a pilot in February 2019 with eleven dairy manufacturers (Fonterra, Lactalis, Saputo, Chobani, Bulla Dairy Foods, Lion Dairy and Drinks, Camperdown Dairy, Meredith Dairy, Bega Cheese, Holy Goat Cheese, Freedom Foods). All companies are participating voluntarily. The objective of the pilot is to confirm that DFSV has the systems, industry support, and evidence to support a different compliance model.
DFSV worked closely with participants in the lead up to the pilot to identify appropriate data points for collection of real-time information. These will be used to monitor and evaluate the performance of dairy industry licensees and verify compliance with regulatory requirements between audits.
The first stage of the pilot focused on the “user experience” i.e. can data be easily retrieved and submitted, can the DFSV systems receive and process this data and can this data be formed into useful information. This information guides and informs the second stage of the pilot which will focus on more real time monitoring and more in-depth analysis using DFSV’s business intelligence to develop dashboard reporting.
Food Safety Culture
The Australian Dairy Food Safety Culture Maturity model has been developed to assess food safety culture performance across the Australian dairy industry. The model was validated by 10 of the 11 participating companies undertaking onsite assessments which encompassed a site-wide survey, interviews with senior site leaders and focus groups with frontline staff and supervisors.
While culture-centred food safety compliance models have previously been developed within individual food businesses, it will be the first time ever, in any jurisdiction, that this kind of regulatory regime has been trialled as part of a sector-wide approach.
How can non-pilot DFSV licensees get involved?