Ichalkovsky cheese factory: labeling should be postponed to the end of 2021

Источник: The DairyNews
Experts of Ichalkovsky cheese factory concluded that the industry will not be ready for mandatory digital labeling since June 1, 2021; in addition, the cost of the company's investment in the project will require financial support. The milk processor doubts the feasibility of implementing the system for the entire market as a whole.

As follows fr om the company's letter of appeal (available to The DairyNews), Ichalkovsky cheese factory produces 130 items, to ensure the introduction of labeling, the company must equip 17 packaging lines.

‘This is a very large amount, which requires huge financial investments! Moreover, the main question is how will this help the end user to be confident in the quality of products, with the already existing Federal State Information system "Mercury"? Currently, work is underway to introduce mandatory labeling by means of identification. To date, the methods of applying the QR code to the packaging have been determined: 2 lines - direct application; 10 lines - application using a label sticker with an applicator, 5 lines - application using a typographic method. The use of the typographic method is complicated by the fact that printing houses are not ready to apply the data matrix code,’ say the experts of Ichalkovsky.

According to the company, some printing houses are not ready to apply a QR code, it requires the most difficult and painstaking work to change the suppliers of packaging materials. The company cannot sel ect only the suppliers that are able to apply additional labeling, there are a number of additional criteria that affect the safety of the quality of finished products, emphasize in the company.

Earlier, the CATD said that printing houses are speeding up the connection to work in the system.

However, so far their number is not enough to support the industry.

‘Speaking about the software of the digital identification system, we emphasize that naturally none of the existing software manufacturers have been engaged in the development of such software. Almost all of them have it under development. No software vendor can provide software as a ready-to-use product. Demo versions are offered that require debugging directly for the enterprise, or starting fr om the zero stage - the production of software for a specific enterprise. Again, everything depends on time! Development time, setup time, and completion time. There are also problems with the purchase of equipment. Only prototypes are available on the market. Due to the great hype, each purchased new unit of equipment for digital marking is made to order. The deadlines for completing orders have been extended, the company's lines were not originally designed for applying QR codes, so the equipment needs to be upgraded by adding new software. Some units of equipment require replacement of line structures, or complete replacement of lines. This is the time for technical calculations, the time for approval of the change with the line manufacturers (foreign production, which makes communication difficult), and the actual time of work execution. For example, a compromise has not been found yet with the manufacturers of the Espera labeling complex, a complex designed for labeling the main product of the enterprise - cheese. Huge financial costs, costs in time! We have very little time!’, - says the letter of Ichalkovsky.

It’s worth reminding that according to Soyuzmoloko, the total cost of the introduction of labeling in the first year for the dairy industry will be more than 61 billion rubles. At Ichalkovsky cheese factory, they emphasize that the cost of implementation at the factory alone is more than 73 million rubles. The company Hochland has similar indicators - wh ere the introduction of labeling will cost about 1 million euros.

‘Since the main activity of the factory is the production of hard and semi-hard, processed cheeses and butter (the start date of labeling of these products is June 1, 2021), it will be difficult to purchase, install and adjust equipment, train personnel in the remaining time. In this regard, we ask you to apply for the postponement of the date of introduction of the labeling until the end of 2021. Since the milk processing community is not ready for digital labeling, which will lead to a failure of supplies to retail chains,’ the company's appeal says.

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