It's not often that a simple lot number saves the day. But during this summer's spinach scare, a lot number and the supplier's ace product tracking system helped lead FDA investigators to the source of the deadly E. coli outbreak.
For small truckers, an out-of-service rig means an out-of-work driver. One truckmaker is borrowing distribution techniques from the retail world to get repair parts right out to dealers and trucks back on the road.
Sophisticated technology makes it possible to track a product's exact whereabouts through the entire supply process and beyond. But the story it reveals might be more than you want to or ought to know.