NewAge Industries, a manufacturer and fabricator of flexible plastic tubing and hose, molder of silicone, developer of RFID tagging technology, and a supplier of fittings and clamps, has been family-owned and operated since 1954. Current CEO, and son of the founder, Ken Baker, has consistently taken a proactive approach to employee relations, and has seen the dividends pay off in low turnover, a solid company culture, and most recently, as one of 35 finalists for the 2009 Top Small Workplaces Award.
While it’s not the first time a trip to Starbucks has helped propel my work, it usually has more to do with the caffeine kick than any topical inspiration. However, a visit last week offered some insight on both the innovation and challenges that lie ahead for the processing industry. In particular, it wasn’t what I bought, but what was being given away at this particular location that got me thinking.
Capturing and using waste heat could be one of the largest conservation and green house gas reduction opportunities. Heat recovery is an opportunity to recycle energy that is typically wasted. According to the EPA, In the United States alone it is estimated that the potential for waste heat recovery could substitute approximately 9 percent of the total US energy usage, or 1.4 quadrillion BTU.
As food safety becomes more prevalent with each headline-grabbing recall, an increasing number of manufacturers have begun to accept the absolute necessity of implementing food safety programs. However, many organizations fail to grasp the full spectrum of activities and competencies needed to implement a comprehensive safety strategy.
The ability to react rapidly to changes in demand is one of the most crucial capabilities in business today. At one time you might have staffed extra people or carried extra inventory, but that is expensive. Every wasted dollar eats away at your margins. Whatever your industry, you need a way to respond quickly to fluctuations in demand while minimizing your costs.
There’s no room for mistakes in today’s economy — and that includes building or re-engineering distribution centers. Because these facilities are critical components of the supply chain, they require a detailed planning process to ensure they meet return on investment expectations.
Do you know the name Norman Borlaug? Me neither, but I think it’s worth a minute of your time to learn a little more about an individual who might have been one of the single greatest human beings to ever walk this planet. His life and the way he approached his passion also offers a blueprint from which we can model our pursuits, and the framework we put around them.
In manufacturing, the people losing their jobs are mostly skilled workers, some of whom are highly skilled. Their worry is whether they can find a comparable job that approximates their current income and benefits in the event of a lay-off.
As with many a treasured recipes and favorite dish, Illes Seasonings & Flavors’ name and genesis came from its founding family: current owner Rick Illes’ grandfather, Dr. A.E. Illes, who in 1927 founded this highly respected manufacturer of distinctive seasonings and flavor products.
Right now, I’m on my way back from touring an 80,000-square-foot in-house post-consumer recycling center in West Virginia. More accurately, I’m probably on a layover at Washington Dulles airport, enjoying my usual airport menu of several diet Cokes, praying that Newark doesn’t bless me with the ever popular “ground stop.
GIANT Snacks™ of Wahpeton, N. D. prides itself in selecting superior hybrids from contract growers in North Dakota to produce the best Sunflower seeds in the U. S. for its customer base. From its original recipe of Roasted and Salted Sunflower seeds, Giant Snacks™ has expanded the line to offer a variety of flavors including BBQ, Dill Pickle, Salt and Pepper, Ranch and early in 2009 Spicy Garlic.
Every change in the marketplace, every upheaval in the economy, every shift in technology, and every change in consumer attitudes and outlook creates opportunities for successful new products.
With food safety as a growing business imperative, an increasing number of food processors, restaurants and supermarkets are turning to ozonated water systems for improving disinfection. Researchers have verified that ozonated water can replace traditional sanitizing agents like chlorine and detergents (if grease must be removed, ozone cannot replace detergents) and reduce the incidence of food-borne illness due to food pathogens.
Harry London Candies of North Canton, Ohio has been manufacturing high quality chocolates and other gourmet confections since 1922, when Harry London, a steelworker, left his job at the local mill and began making family recipes by hand in his own kitchen. Over the years, Harry London Candies has progressed from these humble beginnings to become a world class provider of luxury candies while retaining the London family traditions of high standards and the purest ingredients.
Trendiness definitely has its place. Things that become trendy tend to generate unfathomable amounts of demand, attention and, perhaps most importantly, revenue. Trendiness can revive flat or struggling products, or even, entire industries. Film-induced tourism is a good example of this. The Devil’s Tower National Monument reported a staggering 74 percent increase in visitors the year after Close Encounters of the Third Kind used this location as a space ship landing site.
The excitement surrounding the biofuels market opportunity has been tempered somewhat by its many challenges, which include ethical questions of food versus fuel, limited availability of inexpensive feedstocks, petroleum price volatility, overcapacity of production and the global recession. However, a two recent reports from both Pike Research and Bio Economic Research Associates forecast that, despite these significant challenges, the combined biodiesel and ethanol markets will reach $247 billion in sales by 2020, up from just $76 billion in 2010.
Channel Fish Company (Boston, MA), producers of frozen and salted seafood, takes tremendous care at every step of their process to produce the highest quality product. To improve the effectiveness of their metal detection operation – both in terms of maximizing detection sensitivity and production uptime – they recently turned to Mettler-Toledo Safeline and selected the PowerPhasePRO.
While barbecuing the other day with my sister (more accurately, while our significant others were barbecuing and we were watching) I was attempting to look busy by examining a package of Martin’s potato rolls. I noticed that, in tiny red print, down the side of the bag it read, “Maxi MMMM flavor.
Bronco Winery—Who are they? “Bronco Winery is passionate about producing its wines with a consistent color, flavor, and mouth-feel,” says John Franzia, a co-owner in the California-based Bronco Wine Company. He is also a 60-something embracer of technology.He comments “Anytime, everywhere”—referring to his company’s adoption of Inductive Automation’s FactoryPMI Plant Management software solution to help his staff run their wine business.
Like most of us, the recession has caused me to somewhat modify my behavior over the past 18 months. The funny thing about putting a big purchase or two on hold, I’ve found, is that the longer I wait to get it, the less I actually want it. Case in point: About a year ago, I began drooling over new car ads and decided I would trade in my dependable VW Jetta for something a bit flashier.