Çekiç, Cargill Foods META Chief Supply Chain Officer and Exco Member, said that
with the pandemic, there has been a radical change in food behavior and a
demand explosion triggered by insecurity in the world. Çekiç added, “As
Cargill, thanks to the digital solutions we offer to our customers and our
agile approach during this difficult period, we have ensured that food and
sustainable solutions are delivered to the people of the region
Chain Officer and Exco Member
Access to safe food, which is a basic human right, is one of the biggest problems of the world's population. Lack of supply puts humanity at risk of food shortages. This risk imposes a great responsibility on suppliers as well as manufacturers. There is a need for an inclusive and comprehensive mechanism that meets agile and technological requirements in the supply chain. Kıvanç Çekiç, Cargill Foods META Chief Supply Chain Officer and Exco Member talked about the issue of food safety and supply, which is as important for national economies as it is for human health.
Indicating that they have been working in line with their determination to focus on sustainable production and products in Turkey, where they have been operating since 1960, and their strong commitment to protect natural resources, Çekiç said, “As Cargill, we are a company that aims to feed the world in a responsible, reliable and sustainable way. As Cargill Turkey, we carry out operations in Turkey, the Middle East and Africa, which we call the META region. We have been in Turkey for 62 years. We produce in the fields of food, bioindustrial and animal nutrition in our four factories.
“We ensured uninterrupted food supply”
With our responsibility to ensure the continuity and safety of food during the pandemic period, we focused our priority on uninterrupted and trouble-free service, while keeping cost in the background. As Cargill Turkey, we chose to carry a much higher inventory load than normal. Thus, we were able to manage fluctuations and risks arising from the supply chain by increasing our inventory amounts. In this way, we ensured uninterrupted food supply.”
According to Çekiç, emphasizing that food production is a sensitive business, one of the most sensitive and important criteria is ensuring traceability and establishing the technological infrastructure and system in the best way. Çekiç said, “We deliver the products we produce in our Balıkesir Turyag factory to our customers in the healthiest way possible, without breaking the cold chain and by following them with digital solutions throughout the whole process. We have recently received a 'Reliable Supplier' certificate for our factories in Balıkesir and Orhangazi. Food companies have a separate responsibility to ensure food safety and sustainability and to offer all types of food to the tables. Cargill has embraced this responsibility as a global vision.
There are many critical points that form the basis of food safety, such as cold chain, hot chain, correct storage and good planning. There is a risk of wastage of food in case of an error in this chain. Therefore, we have shown great sensitivity to keep the loss at a minimum level by fulfilling the healthiest conditions and ensuring the end-to-end safety and tracking of the food. Raw material transportation in food, food supply requires technical expertise and extensive investment. In this regard, there are regulations regarding the conditions under which each product should be transported. Cargill's own jurisprudence contains more stringent requirements than legislation. In this context, qualified suppliers and equipment that can meet the requirements are essential for us to do our job. We also provide technical support to our suppliers in order to comply with these rules.
In addition, solutions such as prolonging the life of food and increasing its nutritional and caloric value come to the fore during periods of reduced food supply. Industrial food is of paramount importance for the continuity of the food supply and feeding the growing population.”.
“We embrace agility in procurement
Çekiç said that Cargill has four main principles that ensure product and service quality, which is determined as the best standards in the world and added:
“First, untouched production with the most advanced technology. The second is the equipment designed for food supply and the developing business partners by constantly investing in the healthiest transportation environment. Third, the technological infrastructure and systems that provide end-to-end monitoring and control. Fourth, the best in the industry, expert and competent colleagues who manage all these processes that require technical expertise… This is the primary vision for Cargill because we always prefer to do the best. Cargill's Corn Processing Facility in Bursa Orhangazi also continues to be constantly updated with the best technologies.
As procurement management, we adopt a well-followed, measured system to flow smoothly and agility. We manage all our planning processes in an integrated manner. In fact, it was like that before the pandemic. Cargill has valued this for many years. Our investments in digitalization and customer satisfaction, our technological infrastructure and our quality culture journey have also enabled us to spend the last two years without any problems, even by increasing our service quality. Behind all this is the word of more than 155 years of experience and more than 155,000 Cargill employees dedicated to the sustainable delivery of food around the world.”.
“Supply chain recovery will take time”
Çekiç reminded that during the pandemic period, the world experienced a radical change in food behavior and a demand explosion triggered by insecurity. “In the same period, as a result of the workforce losses due to the pandemic, the supply chain could not meet the increasing demand," said Çekiç, and continued his words as follows: “Especially in international trade, ship and port operations were overloaded and even came to a deadlock. This led to breaks in the global supply chain. As a result, services were disrupted, costs doubled or tripled, resulting in inflation in food. In addition, routes on land and sea have changed, transit times have increased. All these brought up the issue of agility in logistics. The improvement in the supply chain will take time, but all industries have to adapt to this new normal. A very serious change awaits us. It was understood that this would not work with only conventional methods. Digital solutions are more involved now.”.