Data management optimization in the fresh supply chain

The opinion of ..

Jerry Tracey, retail sector manager at GS1: "Working with standards should spread like an oil slick"

“When you want to do business successfully, you have to cooperate with other companies. For companies to understand each other, they need to speak the same language. GS1, one of Fresh Upstream’s initiators, supports this by issuing unique identification codes in the world of food. According to Jerry Tracey, retail sector manager at GS1, more awareness of the importance of standardization is needed.

Marc Jansen (CBL): “Transparency has become a hygienefactor. People just expect it to be there”

The Dutch Food Retail Association(CBL) is one of the initiators of Fresh Upstream. Director Marc Jansen explains why his organization has taken this step. “Transparency has become a hygienefactor; it is no longer a nice to have for consumers, they just expect it to be there. And if that’s not the case, this will result in distrust . That makes Fresh Upstream’s mission a very relevant one. ”

Bert Urlings (Vion): "Standardization may not be a sexy subject, but it is also a moral duty to our consumers"


“Compared to twenty years ago, consumers want more insight into the origin of their food. They even demand this kind of transparency. Moreover, this information must be available à la minute. Reason for me to become a member of the core board of Fresh Upstream, an initiative that revolves around stimulating and supporting data exchange within the international fresh chain,”  says Bert Urlings, Corporate Director Quality Assurance of the Vion Food Group. 

Fresh Upstream Foundation

The Fresh Upstream Foundation is a collaboration platform of the Dutch Food Industry Federation (FNLI), Fresh Produce Centre, Frug I Com, the Dutch Agriculture and Horticulture Organisation (LTO Nederland), the Dutch Food Retail Association (CBL) and GS1 Netherlands.

The aim of this collaboration is to strengthen the use and development of information standards in the fresh chain. The platform uses international standards from both retail and government in an integrated approach.


Consumers value product information
Content Manager
/ Categories: Nieuws

Consumers value product information

Consumers value information about the company where the pigs are kept when buying pork, and are willing to pay extra for information about this. This is shown by research by Wageningen Economic Research among consumers in the Netherlands, Germany and the United Kingdom.

More than half of Dutch consumers choose products with origin information and an additional price. This has been investigated for minced meat, rib chop and pork tenderloin. This may cost around 13 cents per kilo, which is roughly equivalent to the costs of guaranteeing the origin to individual companies. Consumers especially find information about well-being and health important. Information about origin and environment score lower. Consumers are less interested in transport or slaughter.

At place of purchase
The origin information can best be communicated on the product or at the place of purchase. Working with a QR code or an app scores low. Few consumers take the trouble to search for information via the website mentioned above, but appreciate the possibility. For the consumer, the store image and a logo on the packaging increase the willingness to pay extra.

Working on image
The pork chain wants to work towards a positive image and trust with the consumer by working responsibly and carefully, by guaranteeing the working method and informing consumers pro-actively. This is in line with a large part of the consumers who think it should simply be well organized. The parties to the chain find direct contacts between consumers and the pig farmers on open days and, in view, the best way to transfer information about the ups and downs on pig farms and in the chain. The disadvantage is that the number of consumers that are reached is limited.

Chain parties also recognize the potential disadvantages of greater transparency, for example that individual entrepreneurs can become the target of action groups.

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Standardisation & Business

Philip den Ouden, Chairman Fresh Upstream Foundation: "There are many very useful standards in the chain, but their use is very fragmented. Together with stakeholders from the fresh chains, we tackle the fragmentation and accelerate the broad application in these chains in order to efficiently and effectively meet the demand for data across the entire product chain. We are very pleased with the support of this chain-wide approach and cooperation with GS1 Netherlands. "