If you have a product safety or quality issue and have reached the difficult decision to remove your products from the retail shelves, RQA’s network of field representatives can help.
RQA’s field representatives will visit stores to remove the affected products (or specific batches of product) from sale on your behalf. We will normally purchase the products and then send them back to your specified location. We can also visit a certain percentage of stores following a product safety recall to ensure that the recall has been effective, and the correct products have been removed from shelf. We have seen the wrong product being removed by retailers as well as no products being removed. We have even encountered independent retailers discounting the affected product instead of removing it from sale!
A global food manufacturer asked RQA to carry out spot-checks on two national mid-size store chains where their product was being sold. A withdrawal had been issued for a single batch of product that had a labelling error on the product. We were asked to visit 10% of the stores that sold the product to ensure that all affected stock had been removed from the shelves. RQA field reps across the UK visited stores, bought any affected items that were still on shelves and also inspected the stock rooms. A large number of products were found still on sale despite the managers acknowledging that they had received the product recall notice. This action enabled the food manufacturer to demonstrate due diligence in ensuring this batch of product was not available for purchase by consumers. It also highlighted the fact that retail level withdrawals were not always comprehensive, especially in smaller retail chains and independent stores.