Perishable inventory: the best tools for expiry date tracking

Author Samuel Fitzgerald

Posted Mar 5, 2023

Reads 4.4K

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If you're working in the food industry or any other business that deals with perishable goods tracking, then you know how important it is to have an efficient system in place. Monitoring raw materials and finished products for their shelf-life management can be a daunting task, but with the right tools on hand, it becomes much more manageable. This is where the use of technology comes into play, giving you real-time sign of what's happening within your inventory.

One of the most effective ways to track perishable inventory is through cloud manufacturing software. With this type of system, you can keep an eye on all aspects of your inventory in real-time, including expiry dates and lot numbers. This will enable you to make decisions quickly based on accurate data rather than guesswork or gut feelings.

If you're not already using cloud manufacturing software to track your perishable inventory, why not give it a try? Most providers offer a free 14-day trial so that you can test out the system before committing to a long-term contract. By implementing this technology into your business operations, you'll be able to manage your perishable goods tracking better and optimize your inventory management processes for maximum efficiency.

Discover Which Industries Deal with Time-Sensitive Products

When it comes to perishable inventory, many industries deal with short natural shelf lives products that require specific time and temperature conditions to maintain their integrity. For example, bread, produce, dairy, and beauty products are just a few examples of perishable items that must be carefully monitored to avoid spoilage. These types of products require refrigeration or other special handling techniques to ensure they remain fresh until they reach their intended audience.

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Other industries that deal with time-sensitive products include pharmaceuticals, especially when it comes to covid-19 vaccines. With a short shelf life and high demand, these vaccines must be transported quickly and stored at very specific temperatures in order to remain effective. Experiential products like golf hotel nights and transportation also fall into this category, as do entertainment tickets for concerts or sporting events.

Revenue management techniques are crucial when dealing with perishable inventory or nonphysical inventories such as business-to-business industries selling food or advertising slots in newspapers or television shows. Because these items have a limited lifespan or specific time frame for use, businesses must carefully manage their inventory levels and pricing strategies to maximize profits while avoiding business-to-consumer problems like overstocked or expired goods. By understanding which industries deal with time-sensitive products and implementing effective revenue management techniques, businesses can stay competitive and successful in today's fast-paced marketplace.

10 Tips & Strategies for Perishable Inventory Management

Managing perishable inventory is a critical aspect of any business dealing with perishable stock. Here are 10 tips and strategies for good inventory tracking, answering important questions like what's missing, when the inventory expires, how many unexpired units we have, and stock tomorrow inventory tracking. Data is essential for making good decisions and avoiding costly mistakes. With real-time updates, businesses can diagnose process problems quickly and give customers advance notice to order proactively. The key benefit of good inventory tracking is that it makes excess inventory more visible; discounting helps recoup some cost. In an ideal world, inventory tracking would be straightforward, with each item bought moved sold written off. But in real life, managing perishable inventory makes forecasting demand difficult without formal forecasting techniques or tried-and-true traditions like building good relationships with customers who give businesses advance notice. However, information technology has made managing perishable inventory easier through sophisticated inventory management software. Even small-scale businesses can integrate data from multiple operational standpoints to give real-time updates and make quick adaptations to receiving unexpected spikes or unpredictable adverse events that render stock unusable. The safety stock principle advises manufacturers and retailers to keep a bit extra in case scenarios like manufacturers making too much product, customers ordering more than stores keeping on hand or individuals packing for a trip needing extra sunscreen. Intuitive stocking with extra units that won't sell quickly isn't a big deal if there's sufficient storage space since they will eventually sell. Retaining safety stock borders on deliberate waste but means stocking units of durable goods at an ironclad level of safety stock is essential for perishable inventory where worthless inventory can have negative effects on the supply chain and environment. Improving management of perishable inventory means innovating technologies that reduce waste in food products where bad represents negative environmental footprint estimates for agriculture within the domestic food supply chain winds up being a big reason to avoid wishful thinking about how much stock one needs on hand. Whether it's a frozen yogurt shop running low on stock or a hospital running low on O-negative blood, safety stock is critical for managing perishable inventory in any business.

What Is Perishable Inventory or Perishable Stock?

Perishable inventory, also known as perishable stock, specifically refers to goods that have a limited lifespan and can easily spoil or expire. Some examples of perishable goods include stocked yogurt, floral bouquets, and fresh produce. These products require careful management and monitoring in order to avoid waste and maximize profits.

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In order to properly manage perishable inventory, it is often stored in a refrigerated warehouse or cooler. Strategies discussed for perishable inventory and revenue management strategies focus on maximizing profits through effective pricing and promotion strategies. Non-stock perishable inventory such as hotel nights or airline tickets may also be subject to similar pricing strategies based on demand and availability. Understanding the unique challenges posed by perishable inventory is critical for any business looking to remain competitive in today's market.

Easily Monitor Your Shelf Life Management: Tips and Tricks

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Keeping track of perishable inventory can be a daunting task for any business, but with the right tools and techniques, it can be done easily. One of the best ways to monitor shelf life management is by implementing a first-in-first-out (FIFO) system. This ensures that older products are used before newer ones, reducing the risk of spoilage and waste. Additionally, regularly checking expiration dates and storing products at the proper temperature can help extend their shelf life. By staying on top of these simple strategies, you can effectively manage your perishable inventory and maximize your profits.

1. First expired, first out (FEFO)

Perishable inventory starting from raw materials to finished products is a challenge for any business. One of the best ways to manage it is by using the expiry date FEFO method. This method ensures that the product with the earliest expiration date is used or shipped first, so that product isn't reached its expiration date before being sold or consumed. By using this method, companies can ensure that their products remain fresh and avoid wastage.

The FEFO method not only helps in preventing wastage but also reduces labor costs. Companies can save money on spoilage and reduce the time spent on spot checks by implementing this system. Additionally, there is a similar shelf life management method called First In First Out (FIFO), which works well for non-perishable items like computer components. However, for perishable inventory, it is important to use the FEFO method mentioned earlier to ship inventory and maximize profits while minimizing waste.

2. Manage your suppliers

Managing your suppliers is crucial when it comes to perishable inventory. To ensure fresher ingredients, find suppliers that can deliver on a regular basis and have a reliable supply chain. It's also important to have alternative suppliers in case of any unexpected disruptions. Some key techniques for managing suppliers include pre-receipt quality checks to ensure that the ingredients meet your standards, as well as maintaining optimal perishable inventory levels to avoid overstocking or shortages of finished goods. By taking these steps, you can help ensure that your perishable inventory stays fresh and high-quality, which ultimately benefits your customers and your bottom line.

3. Implementing software

To effectively manage perishable inventory, it is important to introduce software that can monitor shelf life management and batch inventory management systems. By implementing such software, you can keep track of a large number of perishable inventory and ensure that your products are being managed efficiently.

With the right software implemented, you can take advantage of features such as lot number tracking, product traceability, and visual dashboards. This will make it easier for you to keep track of your perishable inventory manufacturing processes and ensure that product recall processes run smoothly in case something goes wrong. Perishable inventory tracking is crucial to any business dealing with fresh goods, so investing in the right software can help you stay ahead of the game.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is perishable inventory management?

Perishable inventory management is the process of tracking and controlling products that have a limited shelf life, such as food or pharmaceuticals, to minimize waste and maximize profits. It involves monitoring expiration dates, forecasting demand, and optimizing storage conditions to ensure product quality.

Why do you need to track inventory?

Tracking inventory helps businesses know when to restock products, avoid stockouts, prevent overstocking, and optimize cash flow.

What is the purpose of inventory management?

The purpose of inventory management is to ensure that a business has the right amount of stock on hand at all times, avoiding both overstocking and stockouts. This helps to optimize cash flow, reduce waste and spoilage, and improve customer satisfaction.

What are the benefits of perishable inventory tracking software?

Perishable inventory tracking software offers real-time visibility into stock levels, expiration dates, and quality control measures, reducing waste and ensuring product freshness. This results in improved customer satisfaction, cost savings, and increased profitability for businesses.

How can perishable inventory Improve Your Bottom Line?

Perishable inventory can improve your bottom line by reducing waste and improving product turnover rates, leading to increased profits and customer satisfaction.

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Samuel Fitzgerald

Writer at Chelmer Valve

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Samuel Fitzgerald is a writer, speaker, and entrepreneur who has dedicated his life to helping people achieve their goals. With a passion for personal development and a deep understanding of human behavior, he has helped thousands of individuals and organizations around the world reach new heights of success. As an expert in leadership and team building, Samuel has worked with some of the most successful companies in the world to help them build stronger teams and achieve greater results.

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