12399848279?profile=RESIZE_400xAcciMap is a systems-based technique used to analyse accidents that occurred within complex socio-technical systems. It has been used to drill into the causes of serious accidents in fields such as transportation or recreation, and also for applications such as identifying risk factors for child labour in supply chains.  More recently it has been used for food safety incidents and foodborne disease outbreaks.

This pre-publication paper is the first report on this methodology being used to analyse contributory factors in food fraud incidents.  The authors applied the model to the milk adulteration scandal (melamine) that emerged in China in 2008.  They coupled AcciMap with a classical Food Fraud Vulnerability Assessment approach (systemic weaknesses associated with opportunities, motivation and control measures).  Their model identified forty-eight contributory factors of influence grouped across six sociotechnical levels across the Chinese dairy system from government to equipment and surroundings. Lack of vertical integration (processes and communication) contributed to the failure. The authors conclude that, when viewed in a broader perspective, the melamine milk scandal can be linked to a series of human error and organisational issues associated with government bodies, the dairy supply chain, individual organisations and management decisions and individual actions of staff or processes.

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