Shopping trolley
Rachel Mirfattahi

By Rachel Mirfattahi, Sector Engagement Executive, Food & Drink, and Make Innovation Happen connector.

It’s the start of the year and everyone wants to get in to shape, whether that’s a personal goal, or a business goal. With all the political uncertainty that is going on around us, perhaps it would be wise to invest in some “me time” and be fit, ready and prepared for the rocky road ahead.

Generally, the definition of “lean and mean” is fit and ready for hard, efficient work or efficient and successful.

In the world of manufacturing LEAN is a well-known principle……it is is a systematic method for waste minimization within a manufacturing system without sacrificing productivity, which can cause problems. Lean also takes into account waste created through overburden and waste created through unevenness in work loads. Working from the perspective of the client who consumes a product or service, "value" is any action or process that a customer would be willing to pay for.

So, if you want your business to be efficient, competitive and successful in 2019 then Interface is here, ready and waiting to make your products, processes and services “lean and mean” and there are number of routes to explore….

Integrity in the supply chain

The food and drink industry relies on its supply chains to ensure consumer choice, affordability, consistent quality of products, continuity of supply, food safety, provenance and traceability throughout.  We are looking for projects which will potentially provide food and drink companies and the industry the opportunity to enhance their reputation; open access to markets and provide assurance and confidence around food safety to consumers, customers and the industry.

Reformulating for a healthy future

Encouraging businesses to think about their product range and how that fits in with a healthy balanced diet. Can manufacturers help people make healthier choices by increasing the amount of fruit, vegetable, fish oil and fibre in their food products? Can they change the portion or pack size? Can they change the nutritional profile and calorific value?

Businesses working collaboratively with other businesses

Encouraging businesses to work with others in their supply chain or with similar businesses to address a major challenge which, if solved, could provide social, economic or environmental benefits.

Food and drink stakeholders working collaboratively e.g. Make Innovation Happen

Guiding businesses from start-ups to established companies through their innovation journey. How to tap into the support through the universities, research institutes and colleges, and public sector agencies.

Driving innovation and efficiencies

Innovation is about new ways of creating products, processes or services. How to be more efficient, sustainable and save money, energy or time!

I don’t think we’re in the business of making you lean and mean, however, our office is below a dance studio, so perhaps we all need to focus on our well-being and get dancing during our tea breaks!

Interested in accessing academic support? Please contact us.  

24 January 2019