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On Tuesday, March 26, 2019, it became known that the chickens in multiple US facilities were infected with the H2N2 virus, avian influenza. As a result, the number of hens has fallen drastically in the last days. The United States Department of Agriculture commented that the organizations working with chickens took efforts to limit the spread of the virus and combat the infection. Nevertheless, the outbreak caused many facilities to close for quarantine to resolve the problem. In turn, all businesses that worked with these suppliers became affected as well.
Sadly, 7th Heaven Bakeries’ farmers and suppliers encountered this issue and had to limit their supply of eggs to the bakeries as a result. At the present moment, 7th Heaven Bakeries is experiencing a shortage of eggs, one of the central ingredients in all of the company’s products. Although the situation will be resolved eventually and the supply chains will enter their regular processes soon, 7th Heaven Bakeries will be affected by the shortage for the next 1 or 2 months.
The current situation is complicated further by the fact that many prominent companies are experiencing similar troubles as well, and their purchasing decisions affect our access to eggs’ supply as well as their cost.
When the news about the infection appeared on March 26, our crisis management team started collecting information about how we can deal with the issue without damaging the products’ quality or our customer’s experience (Dhanesh and Sriramesh 205). Since hard eggs are a part of most recipes that 7th Heaven Bakeries have, it was a challenging problem for our team to approach. To protect our clients from any potential harm and ensure that our products will remain high quality, 7th Heaven Bakeries has decided to use substitutes for eggs in the period of the problem’s resolution. The outcomes that we hope to achieve are based on the principles of quality and affordability – our clients should not see a decrease in the quality and taste of our pastries or a rise in prices.
The steps that 7th Heaven Bakeries takes or will take in response to the crisis are built on values of integrity and transparency. 7th Heaven Bakeries will make sure that all stakeholders will receive truthful information concerning the problem promptly. All employees of the company were already informed about the issue and its details. Moreover, critical internal stakeholders were contacted to make sure that their input into the solution process was recorded.
Currently, the crisis management team continues to monitor the outlets of information, including the United States Department of Agriculture. 7th Heaven Bakeries prioritizes multiple steps in addressing the issue. First, the management team will investigate the existing supply of eggs and the possibilities for acquiring bulk eggs from trusted sources. Next, the company will analyze the potential substitutes for eggs in baking products. As of now, the list of the proposed ingredients includes:
- ¼ unsweetened applesauce;
- ¼ cup of mashed banana;
- 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds mixed in 3 tablespoons of water;
- ¼ cup of vegetable oil;
- Water, oil, and baking powder whisked.
These ingredients are being tested to determine the quality of the final product and its price. Moreover, 7th Heaven Bakeries will take additional steps to ensure that these ingredients will not cause changes in taste or expose customers to potential allergic responses. Upon reviewing the information about these materials and determining the most suitable one, 7th Heaven Bakeries will update critical stakeholders, employees, and clients on the changes in the recipe.
The packaging of the products as well as labels and nutrition facts will be updated without delay. 7th Heaven Bakeries will take full accountability for the decisions that will be taken to address arising issues (Bakker et al. 277). Any other developments will be shared and distributed with the public as well.
7th Heaven Bakeries need to mention that our concern for customer safety and satisfaction is the guiding principle for any decision that will be made in response to the present crisis (Lin et al. 601). Thus, we hope that our clients will understand why changes will need to be made quickly and efficiently (Jin et al., “Crisis Communication”; Jin et al., “The Influence of Communication”). Moreover, customers can be sure that 7th Heaven Bakeries’ facilities are safe from any signs of the infection. The rapid response of our crisis management team has guaranteed that our quality checking was strengthened.
7th Heaven Bakeries will continue to monitor the crisis, and any new information that will arise will be considered to update the company’s actions. We aim to ensure that our clients will not encounter any trouble with accessing our products in the next 1 or 2 months. Also, we will make certain that the experiences of our clients will stay exclusively positive. All questions that may concern customers will be answered on the 7th Heaven Bakeries’ website (Crandall et al. 206). Our social media channels are open to your questions, comments, and feedback (Cheng 58; Coombs 141; Eriksson and Olsson 198). We understand that our customers may still have some concerns regarding the future of our products and will do our best to consider your perspective.
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Crandall, William Rick, et al. Crisis Management: Leading in the New Strategy Landscape. 2nd ed., SAGE Publications., 2013.
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