CIFSQ 2023 in Beijing, China – Seven important takeaways.

The China International Food Safety and Quality (CIFSQ) Conference in Beijing brought on November 2–3, 2023, a passionate community of global experts together to address critical issues and identify recent advances in science, intelligent technologies, and effective best practices that can make a difference towards improving food safety.

Our World of Auditing presentation focused on the future of quality and food safety auditing strategies and programs. We shared our experiences working for and with global leaders. We discussed the trends shaping the future of auditing, where we came from, where we are now, and what the future may hold. We shared our conviction that to address critical challenges and opportunities in a world where the only constant is change, we must innovate and collaborate in unprecedented ways.

⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠Several presenters highlighted the importance of adapting and embracing new technologies. They emphasized the need for continuous learning and staying ahead of the curve as we navigate this rapidly changing landscape. They stressed that being open-minded and willing to explore different approaches is crucial to finding innovative ways.

Some key elements discussed

Key elements were discussed throughout several presentations, including:

  1. The role of technology in driving change and how organizations can adapt to keep up with new developments, the importance of cross-sector collaboration, and the power of data-driven decision-making. The message was clear, to thrive in this new era of change, organizations must be willing to break down silos and work together with partners from different industries. Additionally, harnessing the potential of data and leveraging it to make informed decisions will be crucial.
  2. The importance of continuous learning and professional development to stay ahead of the curve. As technology advances rapidly, individuals must update their skills and knowledge constantly.
  3. The need for exploring different approaches and being open-minded as a strategy for finding innovative solutions in a constantly changing world.
  4. The vital role of collaboration navigating the complexities of the future. By working together and pooling diverse perspectives and expertise, organizations will tackle challenges more effectively and develop groundbreaking ideas.
  5. Ethical considerations and responsible use of data in maintaining trust and credibility in the digital age.

Seven important takeaways

Here are seven essential takeaways that link to auditing in various ways:

  1. Digitalization will give food and feed safety a boost to risk assessment and risk management. It will also improve traceability and transparency in supply chains. Investing in advanced technologies and data analytics will enable organizations to proactively identify and mitigate risks, enhancing their ability to respond to emerging threats.
  2. International cooperation should be strengthened to address global challenges. It includes sharing information and best practices among countries and organizations. Collaboration and partnerships among different stakeholders, including governments, industry players, and research institutions, are crucial to addressing the complex challenges associated with food systems. Defining and monitoring key collaboration performance indicators is critical. Learning by doing and learning from your peers is of the utmost importance.
  3. There is a need to focus on risk-based approaches and partnerships for integrated food systems, as this will help ensure the safety and security of the entire food supply chain.
  4. There are opportunities in how organizations implement Root Cause Analysis, and most of the issues we experienced could have been prevented. Food Safety culture is always the basis of the problems when there is a lack thereof.
  5. There is a need to focus on quality in data and data mining while preserving confidentiality. A data governance structure will be needed to ensure the information collected and analyzed is accurate and reliable.
  6. Artificial Intelligence impacts what and how we do things and will continue to do so, including auditing.
  7. Food Safety Culture is a journey, not a destination.

We are convinced that progress is possible when all stakeholders work together and collaborate effectively. The CIFSQ Conference in Beijing is one of the essential platforms allowing this to happen.

See you in Shanghai on October 30-31, 2024, for the next episode…

By Marc Cwikowski
November 07, 2023

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