The implementation of procedures for the reception and storage of materials and inputs, for example, packaging materials, pallets, harvesting boxes, chemicals, tools, and even raw materials, is of vital importance because they reflect the standardized processes for their correct handling. From the moment they arrive until their disposal in production and packaging, the procedures help to extend their shelf life, reduce waste costs, and therefore to maintain the quality and safety of the products grown and packaged by the companies integrated into our Veggies from Mexico community. Another advantage it offers is the focus on labor safety (facilities and personnel). If it is carried out based on a risk assessment.
Elements that the reception and storage procedures must contain:
They should establish policies and/or technical requirements for reception, for example:
– That what is received corresponds to what was ordered.
– Perfectly protected and in optimal conditions for storage.
– Free of foreign matter (insects, dust, stones, mud, paint, etc.).
– Containers or packaging are not broken and their labels are legible, etc.
Handling and/or storage requirements, e.g:
– Keep walkways and facilities clean and free of obstructions.
– Movement in aisles should be well-regulated to avoid collisions and accidents.
– As in any work environment, good ventilation and lighting are conducive to good working conditions.
– Avoid contaminants through dust, water, or grease that are adhered to the packaging of the inputs.
– Delimit spaces between the products and the walls to facilitate cleaning and avoid pest nesting.
– Have Personal Protective Equipment according to the activities and risks to which workers are exposed.
– Store according to the nature of the product, material, and/or input.
– Store according to the policy of First In – First Out (FIFO) or First Expiry Date.
– Keep the products, materials, and/or supplies organized so that they can be counted quickly and effectively, either in direct storage or on shelves.
– It is essential that the loads are handled and stored in a balanced way and that they are well secured to prevent them from falling or detaching part of the merchandise.
– Record all incoming and outgoing materials and supplies.
– Have emergency exits signposted and, of course, free of obstacles.
These rules must be made known to workers and they must be respected to avoid all kinds of accidents.
For this purpose, Eleven Rivers Growers has chosen to include it within its internal audit lists to evaluate it frequently in each of the operations of the member companies of the Veggies From Mexico community.