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That balance has become more magnified in recent years as industry trends are influenced by demanding schematics and record-keeping activities. Food companies across the globe—from big names to the smallest family-owned operations—are working full speed ahead to align with requirements imparted through Global Food Safety Initiative schemes and the Food Safety Modernization Act. But what is the cost? In the wake of these dramatic changes, has the industry begun to lose sight of the human aspect of food safety? Although AIB has taken a progressive approach toward adapting to these regulatory- and client-imposed changes, we also hold firm that plant inspections and ongoing education at all employee levels are the only true ways to determine whether food sanitation and safety are being taken seriously.
Pursley is probably most well known in the food industry as an advocate for the importance of the human component. Although the science of food safety systems—namely programs and records—is certainly an important factor in any organization, the key to achieving success is to create and sustain a culture of food safety in a food plant workforce. This involves imparting passion and integrity for food safety into the workforce through education…not just training. It is explaining why a process or procedure is important…not just teaching how it is done.
It is Pursely’s unrelenting honesty, convictions and business ethics that have fostered the high level of respect AIB enjoys within the food industry. Although AIB regrets losing such an iconic leader who has been part of our company’s heart and soul for so many years, we are honored to carry on his mission of making progressive strides toward food safety based on a balance of science and people.