In the highly regulated world of food and beverage (F&B) labeling, precision and compliance are paramount. The slightest error or deviation from industry regulations can have far-reaching consequences. To ensure labels are accurate, compliant, and aligned with your brand identity, you need more than just a project management (PM) system; you need an artwork management solution.
In this blog post, we'll explore the critical differences between PM systems and artwork management software, with a focus on Veraciti, a powerful tool designed to meet the specific needs of the F&B industry.
Why Accuracy Matters in F&B Labeling
The F&B industry operates under strict regulations to ensure the safety of consumers. Accurate and compliant labels are not just a nicety; they're a legal requirement. These labels must adhere to guidelines set by agencies like the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), specifying the content, format, and placement of information. Labels must also accurately reflect the product's ingredients, allergens, and nutritional information.
Beyond regulatory requirements, consistency and branding are essential for F&B companies. Labels must carry the brand's identity and message clearly and consistently, without any spelling mistakes or deviations from the brand's style guide.
PM Systems vs. Artwork Management Software
Project management systems are excellent for managing workflows, but they fall short when it comes to handling the complexities of F&B packaging artworks. PM systems provide a basic routing system to get artwork approved but lack the content management capabilities and proofing tools required for collaborating on, organizing and managing content independently.
Here's where artwork management software, like Veraciti, excels:
- Collaboration: F&B labeling often involves more than one person, from the product development, regulatory, and marketing teams to the quality control and legal/compliance teams; it's necessary for different departments to be able to work on various aspects of a project simultaneously. PM platforms don’t tend to allow you to see real-time annotations from colleagues, whereas artwork management software designed specifically for collaboration, ensures everyone can view and annotate files together, reducing duplicate comments and improving efficiency.
- Artwork Comparison and Version Control: It is common for companies to go through multiple iterations during the artwork the artwork approval process and keeping track of these versions and comparing them can be complicated when using PM systems. Artwork management systems maintain detailed version control of artwork designs. This is crucial for tracking changes, ensuring compliance, and identifying any errors or inconsistencies in previous versions. Artwork management software, like Veraciti, makes it easy to compare and track changes, ensuring artworks are always up-to-date and error-free.
- Custom Rules Engine: The rules engine allows users to define rules consisting of conditions (if-then statements) and actions. These conditions specify the criteria that need to be met for the rule to be triggered. What's more, the rules engine keeps checking incoming data against these rules and acts automatically, saving time, reducing errors, and enabling quick responses to maintain compliance.
For example, if a change was made to allergen regulations tomorrow, many F&B manufacturers would need to make up to thousands of changes and time is of the essence to ensure their products stay compliant. With Veraciti, you can automatically implement as many as 10,000 changes in as little as 14 days, a task that would take up to six months with conventional processes. Thanks to the rules system, you can make single or mass changes depending on the type of item you're labeling, allowing you to automate changes to specific products depending on determined rules set by you - saving you time, money and keeping you compliant.
- Audit Trails: Highly regulated industries require audit trails to track changes and maintain compliance. Artwork management systems are often designed with these highly regulated industries in mind. Veraciti, which is used to dealing with some of the largest enterprises from the most highly regulated industries, offers comprehensive audit trail capabilities to meet these needs.
- New Requirements: The F&B industry is continually evolving and new food label requirements are constantly emerging. For example, supplements now require updated labeling that goes beyond traditional food labels. There’s no need to panic about this change in regulations, as artwork management systems are made to be updated in line with new requirements. Veraciti simplifies the process of adapting to new regulations, making it easy to get these changes right with our label templates that are constantly being updated.
- Integration: Most PM systems do not integrate with other crucial systems, such as enterprise resource planning software (ERP), Recipe Management Systems (RMS) or Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) software and Product Information Management (PIM) systems. Veraciti's artwork/content management solution offers seamless integration, ensuring that all your systems work in harmony to provide a single source of truth, making it as quick and easy as possible to get your artwork from initial concept stage to printing.
- Proofreading Tools: According to Food Safety magazine, 160 product recalls were due to undeclared allergens in 2018 in the US - of which mislabeling was found to be the biggest cause, rather than contamination. Not only can product recalls due to labeling errors be incredibly costly but they can also be extremely dangerous to consumers. With Veraciti's proofreading tools, you can rest assured that you’re getting things right the first time, increasing the speed to market and ensuring compliance.
The Veraciti Advantage
In conclusion, while project management systems may seem like a budget-friendly option, they're often too generic and limited for the highly regulated F&B industry. To maintain accuracy, compliance, and brand consistency, invest in artwork management software like Veraciti. With its collaborative, rule-driven, and integrated approach, Veraciti empowers F&B companies to stay ahead of regulations, adapt to changing requirements, and maintain the highest standards of labeling accuracy. Don't settle for good when you can have great—choose Veraciti for precision in F&B labeling.
To see the power of our cloud-based labeling and artwork management software for yourself, get in touch to book a demo with one of Kallik’s experts today. Don’t just take our word for it, see what our customers have to say about Kallik in our case studies here. Alternatively, why not give one of our previous blogs a read to learn more about how to improve the sustainability of your labeling and artwork process.