Dawn Meats automates Red Tractor Assurance checking

Dawn Meats, the UK and Ireland meat supplier, has implemented an Integrated Checker service for verifying supplier Red Tractor assurance claims for beef.

The system works by scanning the animal passports at the lairage to ensure they are checked for Red Tractor Assurance (RTA). The service has been created in partnership with Edinburgh-based tech firm everysite and food industry solutions provider Hellenic Systems.  

It means Dawn Meats can demonstrate it checks the rule that beef cattle have been on an assured farm for at least the previous 90 days. Until now the only way has been to check all farms and markets that each individual animal has been on through the Red Tractor Assurance (RTA) website. This is a manual and time-consuming process.

The service also helps ensure that individual customer requirements for a maximum number of movements in the chain can be easily verified. This is an important step forward in helping reduce the risk of food fraud as recommended by the recent Elliott Review.

Nick O’Toole, Dawn Meats UK IT manager, said: “The new Integrated Checker service is saving us significant amounts of manpower checking assurance across five sites. It also helps us meet our customers’ supply chain requirements and those of the BRC Global Food Standard for proactively managing our supply chain.”

The project was backed by Red Tractor. Philippa Wiltshire, sector, communications and management information manager, said: “We are delighted this service has been developed as the industry has been calling for a quick and accurate electronic way to verify the Red Tractor assurance status of animals for a number of years.”

Everysite business development director Jim Flynn said: “One of the issues the sector is experiencing is the amount of time, resource and hassle involved in ensuring that their supply chain assurance standards are up to scratch. Food businesses can often have full-time staff manually checking supplier assurance status, which is an unnecessary cost.”

Terry Carter, managing director of Hellenic Systems, said: “We took the decision to integrate the Red Tractor service because it’s what our customers need. They can see the value of automating what is essentially a time-consuming and error-prone manual task.”

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