OPERATIONAL SYSTEMS & LEAN MANUFACTURING
It’s a common belief among the small-scale food processing world that the benefit of “economy-of-scale” is only for the big guys. While large sized manufacturers do benefit from scale, the principles of Lean Manufacturing can be applied to manufacturing businesses of all sizes.
Lean manufacturing is a systematic method of minimizing waste within a system while optimizing productivity. Think: efficient and streamlined. Foundtree Product Design applies the lean principles of PLAN-DO-CHECK-ACT in building operational systems so that you can consistently meet your financial goals.
- PLAN – First we begin by defining your manufacturing objectives and goals, understanding the nuts and bolts of what is happening in your operation, and identify what the Production Strategy needs to focus on.
- DO – Next we build out your Production Strategy and Production Plan. A Production Strategy is the bigger-picture road map or end-to-end vision of the manufacturing business and includes tools to help you navigate changes and unexpected challenges to make informed decisions and react quickly and effortlessly. A Production Plan, on the other hand, is the execution plan or playbook that outlines the day-to-day activities of the manufacturing operations needed to fulfill the Production Strategy.
- CHECK – I like to say, “The Proof Is In The Paperwork”. I even made a YouTube Video about this. Success of the Production Strategy and Production Plan must be measurable, but it’s not as simple as establishing a sales goal and meeting it. The concept of “Managing Forward” is crucial to a lean system in the sense that routine monitoring of production metrics (the “paperwork”) provides an indication and proof of how your manufacturing operations is doing and whether or not you need to take measures to realign the operations so that you will meet your financial goals. This is where Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) come into play. I identify the KPIs important to your business and provide training so you feel confident to monitor them and make changes when you need to.
- ACT – This is the fun part, where you begin to execute your Production Plan, put your KPIs to work, meet your objectives and financial goals.
FOOD SAFETY PLANS
Every food processor is required to have a food safety plan. A written document and records, a food safety plan can be a lot more than just a requirement – it can help you reduce risk to your business and gives customers assurance that you are diligent.
Food safety consulting services include:
- Navigating your requirements
- Developing a food safety plan to meet provincial, federal and/or HACCP* certification requirements
- Product-specific HACCP Plans
- Implementation and ongoing maintenance of your food safety plan
- Custom training for your business and employees
- On-site gap assessments
- Facility and process design
*HACCP stands for Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point. It is a scientific systematic approach to managing food safety that is used world-wide.
Navigating the regulatory world can be like walking through a labyrinth. Understanding the language isn’t simple either. Whether you need help with reviewing a product label or understanding what claims you can or cannot make, I can help ensure your business is and remains compliant.
Regulatory compliance services include:
- Regulatory review of labels
- Confirming the ingredients and allergens are declared appropriately
- Preparation of nutrition facts data
- Confirming that claims are allowable
- Interpretation of regulations
To assess how your business measures up to food safety standards and the HACCP benchmark, a gap assessment is a critical tool that can help you identify non-conformities. I have conducted many gap assessments for small-scale food processors in BC, ranging from the one-person, rural operation to an advanced, high-volume commercial facility. In a gap assessment, I come on-site to your facility and take a close look at the physical premises, any existing written policies and procedures you use, HACCP plans, and operational practices. After the visit, I prepare a comprehensive report with recommendations for you that are based on the level of food safety standards appropriate for your business and the regulatory requirements that apply to you. I am not an Inspector – the report is for your purposes and provided to you in confidence.
Moving, upgrading or building a new facility? Let me help set you up for success by guiding your build. I start with your products and processes and conduct an on-site assessment. Next, we work together to design the layout of the facility to ensure it meets your requirements as well as regulatory requirements. I can also help you build out a budget for your build and assist in the food premises permit application process by developing a compliant food safety plan.
NUTRITION DATA SERVICES
Most food products are required to have a nutrition facts table on the label. There are three ways to determine the nutrition data:
- Lab Analysis
- Calculated Data
- A combination of Lab Analysis and Calculated Data
While lab analysis is the most accurate and preferred method, it can be cost prohibitive at approximately $1000 per product. Foundtree Product Design owns a comprehensive database of ingredient nutrition data and specialized software to help you get the data you need. Standard rates for this service are:
Products with up to 4 ingredients:
$175 first product
$100 each additional product
Products with 4-9 ingredients:
$200 first product
$175 each additional product
Products with 10+ ingredients:
$225 first product
$200 each additional product
TRAINING & FACILITATION
As an experienced coach and Food Processing Human Resources Council approved facilitator, I can provide custom or industry-standardized training to meet the growing needs of your business. Training topics include food safety and HACCP, value-added processing, product development, regulatory compliance, quality management, business planning and more. Check out the “Workshops” page for upcoming training or contact me for more information.
FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR SERVICES
I am a vetted consultant for the BC Ministry of Agriculture who provides many support programs and workshops for food producers and processors. You can find more information about the programs and eligibility at: www.smartfarmbc.ca.