KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, Oct. 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Rentokil Initial Malaysia brought together over 200 key industry leaders nationwide, from F&B manufacturing, logistics, warehousing, hospitality, food handlers, and pharmaceutical sectors with one objective - to improve food safety in Malaysia. Themed "Innovating Supply Chain Risk Management Through Science And Technologies", experts from Rentokil Initial demonstrated to the participants on how innovations can help on food safety in Malaysia. The workshops were held at the Spice Convention Centre in Penang, Double Tree by Hilton in JB, and Le Meridien in KL on the 21, 22, and 24 of August respectively. The event was also graced by Health Inspectors from the Ministry of Health (MOH), whose role is to ensure that the parties involved in food preparation for consumer consumption are well governed.
Recently, international news portals were swamped with food recall reports on contaminated eggs in the European markets. Besides recalling the eggs, a long list of food products that contained eggs had to be withdrawn from shelves as well. Closer to home, in 2016 a popular milk brand in Malaysia had also recalled their product off the shelf when it was found to be contaminated with harmful bacteria.
Food and beverage product recalls can lead to far-reaching consequences, affecting business reputation and profit losses. However, one of the biggest impacts in food contamination is how it affects consumers' health. In 2015 alone, 14,433 of food poisoning cases were reported in Malaysia. These illnesses can be fatal if not treated immediately. Unfortunately for Malaysians, food poisoning fatalities are more likely to happen in the country due to its hot weather. Scientific studies have shown that microbes such as bacteria, parasites or viruses multiply 10 times faster the moment food is exposed to heat.
Hence, it is crucial for key players in the food supply chain to understand how the employees' attitude, behaviour, pest management and sanitation practices, including the maintenance of their premises and equipment, can affect the safety of food and prevent exposure to foodborne diseases.
Which is why, the market leader in pest management, Rentokil is very committed to improving food trust in Malaysia. Through workshops and working in partnership with the Ministry of Health (MOH), Rentokil continues to educate key players in food processing, hotels and pharmaceutical industry on the strict compliance to the regulations and health standards to ensure food safety from farm to table. Food can be contaminated at any point of the production process, from harvesting of raw materials to processing, storage, distribution, transport and preparation to table.
Besides that, Rentokil also recognises the importance of science and technology integration with pest management. Scientific and biological research has been conducted to better understand the behavioural instinct of each pest to develop effective solutions and innovation to eliminate pest problems.
"The world population is going to reach 8.5 billion by year 2030, and due to globalised supply chain, food safety management has gotten more challenging than ever. Ensuring the supply of safe food products is extremely crucial to protect the public's health. This is why technology and data transparency are important to mitigate any potential food safety risk in the entire supply chain," said Carol Lam, the Managing Director of Rentokil Initial Malaysia.
Carol also added, "In recent years, Internet of Things (IoT) has been the talk of the town on its potential to revolutionise the way businesses operate across the globe. The IoT is currently used most commonly in the food industry to track and trace the status of products through the entire supply chain. The other advantage of end-to-end food safety monitoring is, it enables various parties involved from farm to table to quickly identify points of origin if food contamination is discovered. Previously these investigations could have taken weeks or months to complete."
"At Rentokil Initial, this is something that our Innovations team has been working on over the years. With the right approach, this will ultimately help us to ensure that our customers take a much more proactive approach in managing food safety risks across the supply chains. Predicting likely sources of contamination and food-borne disease outbreaks, detecting food safety threats as they happen and implementing control measures before threats can spread. This will improve efficiencies and reduce losses throughout the supply chain. Most importantly, raising standards in food safety and security for consumers."
During the workshops, participants were given the opportunity to experience first-hand on how PestConnect functions, it is an online connected system, which provides continuous 24/7 monitoring, with rapid response and protection against pest, for example rodents. These connected devices automatically detect pest activities and send the data directly to myRentokil, the online reporting system that allows customers to stay on top of any potential risks at their site(s). Tens of thousands of Rentokil's customers are now able to access their myRentokil accounts for analysis and audit support.
On top of that, Rentokil also unveiled its Lumnia, the Insect Light Trap (ILT) with improved LED technology, which is proven effective to attract flies up to 150m2 because its UV light can transmit 40% further with LED strips compared to standard tubes. Lumnia delivers an average of 61% in energy savings, when compared to similar products.
Juliana Soo, Regional Technical Director of Rentokil Initial, said at the event: "As devices become more connected to transmit and receive data, we hope that our sharing on the importance of data insights and Internet of Things (IoT) allow the key industry leaders to understand the importance of big data in an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for effective supply chain pest risk management."
She added, "These innovative technological systems are able to deliver new data insights that enable businesses to identify trends and hotspot areas. It can also provide a real solution to help mitigate risk in the increasingly complex modern supply chains. It is a more proactive approach towards food safety that helps organisations throughout its supply chain risk management."
"We are always on the lookout to improve the quality in Malaysian food industry. With today's technology, it gives us better understanding of how these pests behave through biological research. Instead of always enforcing strict legislation to these decision makers, we are changing our approach and are very excited to work with Rentokil in educating and create awareness amongst the auditors and food industry on the existing food safety compliances," said Jamilah Binti Salikin, Principal Assistant Director, Pre-Market Approval Branch, Food Safety and Quality Division, Ministry of Health Malaysia.
About Rentokil Pest Control Malaysia
Rentokil Pest Control, part of Rentokil Initial group is one of the largest business services companies in the world. As the market leading pest control company that never stop innovating, Rentokil's Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programme provides wide range of solutions for the various sector ranging from the food processing industries, pharmaceutical, service sectors, retail to industrial and manufacturing.
Rentokil IPM programmes is designed to be compliant with recognised standards or certifications, such as AIB International, BRC Global International Standards, YUM!, Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP), and many more. Continuous pest monitoring, regular visitations and proactive recommendations are the standard supports delivered to ensure the effectiveness of the IPM programme.
To further complement Rentokil's IPM programme, an online reporting and analysis system has been deployed to help customers monitor pest activities at multiple locations effectively. It also provides recommendations management, better traceability and easy access to all key information and service delivery records needed for pest risk management and food audit requirement.
Research and Development is an intrinsic part of the business. We have Technical Research and Development Centres based in England and India, continuously create new innovations and more effective products in our fight against pests.