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Fish Fresh off the boat and into ERP

Dynamic Systems, a maker of barcode technology, has teamed up with enterprise resource planning (ERP) supplier Northlake Partners to provide an automated traceability system that enables real-time visibility—from fish to financials—for the seafood and produce industries. The integration of the two applications will also help manufacturers comply with rules emerging from the Food and Drug Administration’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

Dynamic Systems’ Simba traceability and labeling software uses barcode technology to automate data collection as the food is processed and packed, recording details such as product attributes, pack dates, inventory locations and shipping information. Northlake’s ERP system called NorthScope, on the other hand, offers sales, inventory, logistics, accounting and management reporting.

Typically, these two systems are kept separate so when a product comes into the warehouse, the data must be re-keyed into the ERP system. Oftentimes, however, operators will simply write information down on a piece of paper. This is time-consuming and potentially introduces errors into the process.

When the track and trace and ERP systems are integrated, there is a time-savings benefit of having up-to-the-minute information transferred from the plant floor to the enterprise. But, more importantly, data quality is maintained.

“Fresh fish has to come off the boat and then go through the plant where it is labeled and put into cold storage or shipped,” said Rob Freeman, business development manager at Dynamic Systems, explaining how automating data capture from the processing plant to the ERP system creates high levels of data accuracy while increasing productivity and lowering costs.

It also plays well into FDA requirements around documentation for product tracing and food safety. To that end, the labels generated by Simba have all of the relevant information on it, enabling traceability right down to the boat the fish came off of, Freeman said.

“We are excited about our relationship with Northlake Partners,” said Alison Falco, President of Dynamic Systems. “Our customers have been asking for an ERP solution designed for the fresh food industry that has the flexibility of Simba.”