In this episode of the Telaid Tech Connect podcast, host Beth Bergmann interviews Thom Schmitt, VP of Sales at ComplianceMate, a SaaS solution cloud technology company specializing in food safety monitoring. Thom discusses the evolution of food safety technology, how IoT can increase operational efficiency and reduce shrink, and the importance of environmental and sustainability goals in the food industry.
Thom begins by explaining the two main modules of the ComplianceMate system: automated temperature monitoring and digitizing checklists. The automated temperature monitoring uses sensors in coolers that report temperature data 24/7. This data is then uploaded to the cloud, where it can be monitored and analyzed. If a cooler goes out of the specified temperature range, an alert can be sent to the relevant people. Thom also mentions that the system can digitize any checklist used in an operation, helping to ensure that necessary food safety tasks are completed on time.
Beth and Thom discuss the importance of food safety for consumers and operators. Thom, as a parent with young children, emphasizes the significance of ensuring that the food served is safe.
Elaborating on IoT sensors and their operational role, particularly in the space that ComplianceMate operates in, he mentions that IoT is not new, but what makes it valuable is the ability to use sensor technology in a cloud-based application. These sensors can measure a wide range of factors, such as temperature and humidity. They use a radio technology called LoRaWAN that is efficient and can capture a lot of data over long distances.
These sensors monitor the temperatures of coolers that hold ready-to-eat food, and the data can be shown to health inspectors to prove compliance with food safety regulations.
Also talking about applications of the ComplianceMate system in convenience stores and quick-service restaurants, which are now offering more ready-to-eat items, he concludes by highlighting the impressive return on investment for the system, which can pay for itself quickly by preventing loss from cooler breakdowns and other issues.
Thom next discusses how food safety technology, such as the use of sensors, can help businesses save money by preventing equipment from working harder than necessary. The data collected by these sensors provides valuable business intelligence that can help ensure people are doing what they're supposed to be doing at the right time. This data can also support brand standards and provide an audit trail for management auditors, third-party auditors, and health departments.
Noting how the data-driven decisions can be used to improve food safety for customers, the use of a digital checklist solution is also mentioned, with Thom highlighting how a small chain they're working with uses this technology to manage hundreds of checklist items daily across multiple stores. The digital checklist solution can automate steps, reduce labor tasks, and focus employees on customer experience. Data sharing allows organizations to uncover trends and address potential issues.
Thom predicts that the future of food safety technology will involve more sensor technology, including monitoring water flow in retail operations. He believes that advancements in artificial intelligence and predictive analytics will allow businesses to identify trends and mitigate potential issues before they become more significant problems.
Thom discusses incorporating customer feedback into the technology development process, as each brand or concept has its unique triggers. He also emphasizes on the organization's members having a food service background, which helps them understand customers' needs and transform those needs into new technology and modules.
ComplianceMate is always on the lookout for new developments in the food safety industry, including attending trade shows and keeping up with other sensor manufacturers.
Are you interested in enhancing your food safety protocols, achieving sustainability goals, and reducing shrink in your business?
Join us at ComplianceMate, where we're dedicated to providing top-notch solutions tailored to your needs. Don't miss the opportunity to learn more about our innovative approach to tackling food safety issues. Together, we can make a difference in ensuring food safety and creating a sustainable future!