Managing the Shelf Life of Microorganisms through the Supply Chain

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Product with a 2-year shelf life needs to be returned to the manufacturing facility to be reworked / reenergized at a substantial cost to the company. Currently managing product with an expiration date is not one of the company's core competencies. As part of company's long-term strategy the company is looking at multiple technologies that will produce commercial products that will have expiration dates. If this problem is not addressed it will be detrimental to these future growth platforms. Some of the countermeasures that were implemented to resolve the rework problem were analyzing and re-label product at distribution, changing manufacturing strategy to add microbes during packaging, implementing standard work during the forecasting process and reducing run size by manufacturer. The multiple countermeasures were successful in eliminating the rework in FY12.

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