On 14/3/18 6:30pm at CSIRO (our gracious host), 39 Kessels Road, Coopers Plains (Brisbane) was the first of FIAQ’s QA Management in the Food Industry seminar series.
The event was co-promoted by our principal partner Brisbane Marketing, Brisbane’s economic development board, and was booked out; late delegates were turned away.
Future Food BOOTCAMP 2018 will serve up a diverse menu of discussions and trends covering food disruptor stories, business acceleration opportunities, grant advice, investment trends, and more.
Date: 23 March 2018
Where: Brisbane Marriot
Cost: Free Event
Our presenter was Steve Thygesen, the QA manager of Snap Fresh for the last 13 years. Snap Fresh Is accredited to ISO 22000, ISO14001, OHSAS18001, halal and their in-house microbiology laboratory is NATA accredited.
We learnt that Snap Fresh is a fully owned subsidiary of Qantas that is currently producing 18 million frozen meals per annum. They have a diverse customer base that includes airline flight catering, hospitals, food service and defence.
Steve took us through the entire process of frozen meal production, from receivals, holding, thermal, catching, chilling, assembly, packing and spiral freezer.
Steve discussed the key advantages that cook freeze meals have over chilled, and he was generous in sharing learnings and solutions applied to challenges faced and managed from each of his areas over the years.
Specifically Steve discussed 5 simple ideas that enhanced control in his facility.
One of these ideas was a microbiological intervention whereby heating of chillers via portable fans and heaters reduced environmental Listeria contamination in those chillers.
Another idea in reducing foreign object contamination from packaging was to change all packaging to high visibility blue (batching bags, euro covers, pallecon liners, pallet covers) and to move opening of packaging into a separate container away from kettles and assembly lines.
The most popular simple idea however was the use of head socks (a woven material hair containment costing $1 from eBay) as a way to go beyond customer expectation. Steve brought many head socks and they were enjoyed by delegates.
Plastic and hair controls resulted in a 32% reduction in total complaints and Steve ended with the comforting statistic that if a person flew once every business day, they would find a foreign object in a meal once every 770 years.
David Rigby led a stimulating question and answer session and a great deal of networking took place over food, drink and birthday cake.
Overall, Steve put forth a very passionate argument that quality assurance is essential in the survival of any food business.
Our next seminar is on Wednesday, 2nd of May, 2018, and will be QA Management in Smallgoods, by Lynne Teichmann of JBS PrimoHans.