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EDI in the meat industry

Fresh meat needs fresh data


There are very few other food items for which freshness and quality plays such an important role as for meat and meat products. The short shelf life of these goods makes order and delivery frequency considerably more difficult than for other products. The swift and, most importantly, correct exchange of order and delivery information is key, especially because traceability is gaining importance in this industry. After all, both retailers and consumers want ever-deeper insight into the value chain. This information is mostly conveyed via batch indications which provide insight into the animals’ origin, raising, fattening and slaughtering.

But how can this important information be transferred swiftly and securely while always being up-to-date? Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) makes all the difference.

The information between supplier and retailer is exchanged automatically, in real time and without any system inconsistencies. In the case of batch information, the electronic despatch advice DESADV is used. Overall, EDI increases quality for all downstream processes, especially for goods whose weight varies. Despite the obvious advantages that EDI has for the Austrian meat and meat processing industry, there is still a lot of unexplored potential. Especially on the IT side, many businesses used to lack the necessary infrastructure that would allow them to exchange data with retailers in a structured manner. “We are seeing a lot of change in this area and there are already many businesses that have taken the lead,” said Klaus Schaffer, Business Development Expert & Product Manager at EDITEL. One of these businesses is the Viennese meat processing company Wiesbauer. This business relies on EDI both along the entire supply chain and in upstream processes to achieve higher transparency.

"EDI helps us make processes such as ORDERS easier and more efficienct, which is why we have been relying on EDI for many years".

Ljuban Magdelinic, the IT director at Wiesbauer

Klaus Schaffer also believes that consistent data digitalization opens up huge opportunities for the industry: “With EDI, administrative work decreases considerably and at the same time, data quality of all outgoing and incoming documents increases,” he explained.


In brief

  • Meets advanced requirements regarding freshness and short shelf lives
  • EDI helps make processes easier and more efficient
  • Transparency in the value chain translates into traceability
  • Correct exchange of order and delivery information
  • Most widely used messages: ORDERS (orders) and DESADV (electronic despatch advice)
  • Improved data quality

EDITEL Partner Network