The growth recipe of JBS Toledo

Advanced transparency and traceability? JBS Toledo found their recipe

Leen Soenen, CFO, JBS Toledo


Getting started

 πŸ”ͺ  Time to prepare: 12 months
 πŸ³  Cooking time: 1 year
 πŸ‘¨β€πŸ‘©β€πŸ‘§  Users: 15


  • Base: Real-time data
  • Topping: Traceability
  • Additional flavor: Clear reporting
  • Extra's: Mobile applications
  • Secret Sauce: Close cooperation


  • Gefragmenteerde data-vastlegging
  • Vertragingen in projecten 
  • Dynamische, internationale markt 


  • Sturen op basis van data
  • Actuele status projecten
  • Betere klantcommunicatie

Solution & technology

Sustainability and food safety are at the top of every food company's agenda. But for JBS Toledo, the bar might even be set just a little higher. As the sales organization of Brazilian JBS, the world's largest meat processor, JBS Toledo must comply with increasingly strict regulations.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central helps them increase transparency and traceability in their supply chain. Discover their recipe for success.


1. Increase traceability through your supply chain

JBS Toledo distributes frozen beef from Brazil to the Western European market. You will find their products in Dr. Oetker pizza, in Come a Casa lasagnes or in their own preparations.  The headquarters in Ghent handles all administration, purchasing, sales and logistics.

 Leen Soenen, CFO since 2013, saw the food sector change in recent years: "Customers are demanding food transparency and legislation is getting stricter. Just recently, the European Union approved the Zero Deforestation Regulation (EUDR): a new regulation to combat deforestation of the Amazon. By the end of 2024, JBS Toledo must be able to demonstrate that their entire production chain is deforestation-free."


The need for transparency is also increasing for JBS as a distributor. Both for sustainability reasons and to guarantee food safety. Compliance is also becoming increasingly complex. To stay compliant, JBS Toledo decided to improve end-to-end transparency and traceability in their supply chain. "The capabilities of our existing Microsoft Navision package were limited. We needed a more powerful solution," Leen says.  

β€œLegislation is getting stricter, both in terms of sustainability and food safety. To stay compliant, we wanted to increase end-to-end traceability in our supply chain."

– Leen Soenen, CFO, JBS Toledo

2. Improve your service along the way

Since 2022, Microsoft Business Central, including a bulky traceability module, helps JBS Toledo document and link the production, processing and distribution chain across country and company borders.

Leen explains: "Each container arriving at the port of Antwerp or Rotterdam contains about 24 tons of meat, which JBS processes over a 3-to-4-month period. Some batches are frozen 7 weeks before arrival, others as early as 15 weeks. We used to record the earliest date in our system by default. This meant a customer could never know for certain when his meat was processed. Now Microsoft Business Central contains the exact production date and location, and the external warehouse also keeps track of that data. If a problem pops up, we can immediately trace the right batch together with JBS. That increases food safety and makes our lives much easier."

β€œThis also benefits customers,” Leen continues, "Our meat is often an ingredient in their final product. So traceability is just as important for them. If they have questions about a particular batch, we can answer them quickly.

Moreover, laws and requirements vary from country to country. This means that we have to report on different issues and issue different certificates in each country. The information we need for this comes from many different parties. Thanks to the new system, we now provide our customers with the correct production details and certificates of analysis immediately by default."

"Our European customers who supply ready meals to airlines have to comply with even stricter U.S. legislation. With Business Central, we can provide them with the right certificates right away."

– Leen Soenen, CFO, JBS Toledo

3. Work more efficiently and gain more insights, even on the go

For Leen, the clear reports and analyses are the icing on the cake: "Business Central centralizes all data from buying and selling, distribution and sales. By linking the platform to Power BI, we can perform more analyses and visualize the data in clear, real-time dashboards and reports. That's a CFO's dream."

The new mobile application in particular is a great asset for Leen's sales team colleagues. Now that they can access the Microsoft platform on their smartphone or tablet, they work a lot more efficiently. Leen also hopes to implement Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement (CRM) in 2024 to further optimize sales processes.  

β€œBoth in Belgium and in our Brazilian parent company, management now receives valuable insights about the market and our business every week.”

– Leen Soenen, CFO, JBS Toledo

4.  Integrate your ecosystem: become a connected company

Something that is still on their wish list: closer collaboration with colleagues in other branches. "If all branches work with Dynamics 365, we will be able to align all our data and processes," Leen explains. "Currently we are looking at possibilities with the United Kingdom. In the future, we also want to exchange data and documents with customers and other partners in our ecosystem, such as external warehouses and logistics companies. We see more and more business partners using the Microsoft platform." 


5. Keep scaling and expanding: your Microsoft platform grows with you

In the future, Microsoft may even be able to further support JBS Toledo's sustainability efforts. "JBS has been taking sustainability initiatives since 2009, which they continue to scale up," says managing director Cristiano Moraes. "The Transparent Livestock Platform, for example, monitors the origin of each beef using blockchain technology. This is quite a difficult exercise because in Brazil, cattle often change hands a few times before we process them. So our parent company maps an ever-longer chain of direct and indirect suppliers. That happens in Brazil, but also has an impact for us here in Western Europe.  

We are also receiving more and more questions about our carbon footprint. We want to measure and report on this matter so that we can fulfill our promise of zero emissions by 2040. And recently we had new regulations imposed from Spain and the UK around plastic packaging. We now keep track of the details of our plastic consumption in Excel, but IT can make a difference there too. With a scale-up system like Dynamics 365, we already have a good foundation to build on."


How was Cegeka able to accomplish this?

Cegeka kicked off the project with a migration scan. Based on the results, we decided to first migrate the existing Microsoft system and expand the traceability functionality.  
Leen was in charge during the migration and implementation, with Cegeka as a loyal co-pilot: "Cegeka is always available for support. They are quite large, and their expertise is impressive, yet they feel like family."


Do you want to stay on top in the complex food industry?

The market, the desires of your customer, the legislation: everything is changing. How do you, as a food company, keep all the spoons in the air – so you keep growing? Discover the growth recipe of top players in your sector.

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