In many cases, the answer to this would be ‘yes’. Introducing the customer into what is essentially a manufacturing environment with which they are not familiar, instantly creates potential problems. Their ‘access’ to the equipment and processes involved within the working environment needs to be carefully considered, with footfall routes around the production area carefully controlled.
Additionally, there could be health implications, if the visiting customer is allergic to any of the allergens that could be present in and around the ‘production line’. This would need to be assessed prior to them taking the tour.
Slip and trip hazards, burns from touching hot machinery, the possibilities of falling from a viewing platform or gallery and food hygiene related to any ‘sampling’ exercises are all possible areas of consideration. There may be legal aspects to consider as well, to stay on the right side of laws relating to the legal serving of alcohol, for instance.
Getting it right can prove highly beneficial, engaging the customer in the production process, enabling them to understand the origin and story of the product in the bottle or jar and creating possible advocates for the product in the world beyond the factory floor. Being able to also charge customers for the tour that delivers such benefits is a real added bonus.
Should you be considering opening up your production line to customers, tourists or the plain curious, get the professional risk management help that can make your experience fly. At the same time, do not forget to put the right insurance in place, should things go wrong. If you wish to talk through the various insurance covers you would be advised to consider, please call 0113 244 8686.