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  Traceability of raw materials

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Author Topic:   Traceability of raw materials
Michel Saad
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Posts: 18
From:Bromont, Quebec, Canada
Registered: Apr 2000

posted 08 August 2000 10:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Michel Saad     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I am unable to find a clear requirement for the traceability of raw materials. Depending who I talk to, they have a different definition of what a raw material is. Some define direct raw materials (materials that stay on the part) vs indirect raw materials (sacrificial materials) saying traceability is only required on the direct materials. Others have defined critical raw materials as materials that have a significant effect on the final product whether they are sacrificial or not.
Can anyone tell me what the requirement is?

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Martijn TVM
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From:schoonhoven netherlands
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posted 08 August 2000 01:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Martijn TVM   Click Here to Email Martijn TVM     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I must honestly say that I never heard of the term direct or indirect raw material. I think that all material influencing your product specifications should be traceable. I don't know what it is you make but I would say all material I could understand that you don't trace 3rd generation recycled material. But since I don't know for sure someone else might be able to help you better.

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Tom W
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From:Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 08 August 2000 04:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom W   Click Here to Email Tom W     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hello - I was looking in and found your topic. Where do you find the need to have traceability on raw materials in QS9000? Are you sure you haven't "laid a trap for yourself" in your quality documentation? I will try and help if I can understand your situation a little better.
The way I understand it, you set the level of inspection and traceability that you want to achieve. Do you understand this diffrently?

[This message has been edited by Tom W (edited 08 August 2000).]

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Michel Saad
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From:Bromont, Quebec, Canada
Registered: Apr 2000

posted 09 August 2000 08:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Michel Saad     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This is what the requirement states:

"The supplier shall establish and maintain documented procedures for identifying THE PRODUCT by suitable means from RECEIPT and during all stages of production, delivery and installation"

I guess we could argue about the definition of THE PRODUCT, but to me this includes raw materials.

Then, in the semiconductor supplement, under 4.8,it states:

"The supplier shall be able to trace product (INCOMING, inprocess and shipped materials and test data) forward and backward within 24 hours."

Again, when receipt and incoming are mentioned, I understand raw materials. I am confused?

Thanks for any help.

Michel

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Marc Smith
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From:West Chester, OH, USA
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posted 09 August 2000 09:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Marc Smith   Click Here to Email Marc Smith     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I read it (interpret it) the same way - raw materials included.

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Tom W
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From:Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA
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posted 09 August 2000 10:42 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom W   Click Here to Email Tom W     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Raw materials are included, but you set the level of traceability. It needs to be cost effective and practical methods. QS does not require companies to due these inspections a certain way. That is left up to the company. There are many raw materials that fall under the group of having to accept supplier data and insuring there test results meet your requirements. For example - Nitrogen purity for a heat treating company. You specify the purity and have to rely on the certifications with actual test data on it as a means of accepting, due to the nature of the process. Green sand in a steel founder is loaded into the sand system with out being touched by anyone. It is blown in from a truck. You are supplied a grap sample but that is what you have to rely on to check. Once the sand is mixed you can not seperate it. I think that if your company identifies how you want to maintain traceability and inspection verification on raw materials and you do what you saw you should be fine. Qs never stated that you have to do it in any certain way. Now if you have additional customer requirements for traceability based on you industry, then you have diffrent issues. If you are talking about Product ID and traceability of your raw materials then you again need to identify which ones you will maintain this on and establish ways of ding it. There is no set way because every comapny is diffrent.

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Michel Saad
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From:Bromont, Quebec, Canada
Registered: Apr 2000

posted 09 August 2000 11:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Michel Saad     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just to make sure we understand each other, I am not talking about incoming inspection. I am talking about being able to trace which raw material lot number is associated with a specific prodcution run/lot number.

quote:
If you are talking about Product ID and traceability of your raw materials then you again need to identify which ones you will maintain this on and establish ways of ding it.

My original question is how do you identify the ones to keep traceability. This changes according who I talk to. I am looking for a clear definition, if there is one.

If there isn't and it is up to us, that means that we could trace none of the raw materials that go into making our products (not that we would do that). This seems hard to beleive.

Michel

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Tom W
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From:Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA
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posted 09 August 2000 02:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom W   Click Here to Email Tom W     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Typically I have seen companies trace raw materials that influence the following - Form / Fit / Function of the product. Defined as A B or C with A having direct impact on the product or process, B having some impact on product or process and C having none. Traceability would be on A and B. Any goods or SERVICES that have direct influence on the product or process would fall into A. B would be goods or SERVICES that indirectly influence or directly but the impact is minimal. C would be all others.

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Martijn TVM
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From:schoonhoven netherlands
Registered: May 2000

posted 10 August 2000 08:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Martijn TVM   Click Here to Email Martijn TVM     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
H Michel Isn't the most important question whether you can trace material lot numbers in finished goods. Because if you can without to much problems I would but if it is a big problem I would come up with the next best thing. But I do not know what works for you. Just remember that if traceability is a customer requirement you have to. If you work with a decent logistic IT system this functionality is usually allready there.

So just define howfar you want to be able to control traceability. And make sure that it's complying to the QS requirements.

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Sam
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Registered: Sep 1999

posted 10 August 2000 08:42 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Sam   Click Here to Email Sam     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
First determine the level of traceability you want.
Remember "suitable means" is the key expression.
Raw material must be identified thru production until the point that it is no longer "raw material,i.e., it has been machined,molded,formed or otherwise made into an item that becomes another part number.
Depending on your type of raw material it is or can be identified by heat number,lot number or batch number in so many inches or feet. Refer to industry standards for identification. Mil std's are a good source for micro-electronics.
Other types of raw material can be tagged or placed in a container with the proper identification.
Accurate record keeping ties it all together.

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Marc Smith
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posted 10 August 2000 09:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Marc Smith   Click Here to Email Marc Smith     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Right, Sam.

Consider traceability at all levels with consideration to your product and it's possible impact(s). If your product is a plastic push-in connector to keep carpet in the trunk in place, traceability at each level will be less of an issue than if your product is air bag asemblies.

[This message has been edited by Marc Smith (edited 10 August 2000).]

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Michel Saad
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From:Bromont, Quebec, Canada
Registered: Apr 2000

posted 10 August 2000 09:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Michel Saad     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for all the input!

This is not even an automotive application, but the customer requires QS9000 anyways.

By using the direct/indirect or critical material definitions, people were asking if the oxygen used to grow an oxide layer (which is important to the functionnality of the circuit) had to be traceable.

Can you imagine the kind of headache that would have been?

Again, thanks.

Michel

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