TraceTales is a software traceability solution for seafood processors, digitally capturing and managing data from raw material through processing, packaging until shipping. It creates efficiencies in data recording and improves internal traceability systems, as well as facilitating compliance with international import requirements. The system can enable small-scale fisheries operations to verify they are complying with internationally required sustainability practices, ensuring their access to valuable markets is maintained and their importance for livelihoods contribution recognized.
TraceTales has a user-friendly system, based on touch screen input, with data automatically recorded from weighing scales and using a QR code scanner to quickly record all information from printed labels. Each loin in a processing plant is given a unique printed label with a QR code, detailing from exactly where the fish originated, date of processing, sourced from a Fair Trade fisherman, quality grade, weight, and more. The label is also attached to each box of fish, detailing the contents. TraceTales allows the processor managers to easily view and interpret their production volumes in real time, manage available inventory, evaluate the quality and volumes of product coming from supplier partners and print invoices and packing slips. TraceTales operates on a Local Area Network (LAN), allowing the system to be deployed in areas with poor or unstable internet connectivity. The system results in fewer human errors in data recording, quicker packing times, fast and accurate identification of contaminated product and has fewer staffing requirements than traditional paper-based recordings, allowing staff to be redistributed to other tasks in the processing plant.
The new era of digital technology is leading to the novel application of information technology for a variety of activities, as well as changing the data collection approach from manual to digital. For processing plants in small scale fisheries, it can be challenging to obtain, record and store data in a reliable, time-efficient and easily-accessible manner. The choice of information technology depends on the geographical location and the availability of internet network infrastructure. These infrastructure limitations create new challenges for fish processing companies in remote areas, who often record data manually, slowing down the traceability of material and with limitations on the amount of data that could be recorded. That’s why digital technology support is needed in electronically recording fish processing transactions to answer the challenges ahead of fish processing companies, especially related to international compliance requirements. TraceTales is a traceability solution for processing companies based in remote locations with poor internet connections, enabling quick and easy capture and management of data at various stages in the processing facility, from the receiving of raw material, cutting, trimming through packaging and shipping to customer. TraceTales enables companies to manage and analyse their production data quickly and efficiently, whilst improving traceability along the supply chain.
TraceTales can contribute to combatting Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing, by transforming manual recording of processing data into electronic transactions, efficiently recording detailed information about the product entering the processing plant related to landing site, fishing ground, vessel, species, landing date, etc.
The benefits of the TraceTales system over traditional paper-based recording include:
- Data recording more accurate and efficient
- Real time monitoring
- Improves traceability
- Fast quality control mechanisms
- Easy to compile documents for with international requirements
TraceTales allows simultaneous data entry during throughout the processing stages, providing summary data, sending data to excel files if further analysis is required, and provides graphical data analysis to facilitate fast decision-making.