Our 2018 efforts were underpinned by:
Massmart’s Product Safety programme continues to impress regulators in South Africa, with numerous acknowledgements and requests to work in advancing national Product Safety policy amidst the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Greater emphasis has also been placed on timeous precautionary product quarantines and recalls when such risk arises.
Areas of improvement regarding our Consumer Protection programme (most notably on-time delivery and product-price-accuracy, especially in relation to growing online sales) have been identified through our customer complaints processes. In response to this, advanced process controls will be implemented in 2019 to balance and improve customer experience both online and in-store.
In 2018, the focus was on improving food safety standards in our stores, processing facilities and DCs. We were audited against the highest global and local food safety standards, which revealed a significant improvement in our overall food safety results.
We continue to work closely with our Private Label suppliers to implement the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) standards and we have seen good progress with the overall compliance. In 2018 product testing was conducted by a SANAS accredited laboratory at both product and store levels to ensure compliance to food safety standards.
We noted an increase in the product recalls in 2018, in comparison to 2017, due to the listeriosis outbreak in South Africa and the general increased awareness around food safety. The reduction in DC audits was due to the consolidation of DCs across our business, which resulted in more effective supply chain initiatives being implemented.