Columns

Editor's Note: Grab it! There's still some low-hanging fruit out there

July 1, 2010
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+
Uncovering it, grabbing it and implementing changes will lead to the game-changing innovation and manufacturing efficiencies our industry so desires.

This month in Food Engineering, we present our 33rd Annual Plant Construction Survey. While it’s no surprise to see plant projects are down 6 percent in this sluggish economy, I’m happy to report operations professionals are continuing to harvest low-hanging fruit and making the best of equipment on hand. Today, it’s all about intelligent asset utilization.

But there’s a dichotomy.

A year ago, when we polled our readers about asset management systems, only half responded they even had one. And of the half who do, 50 percent are unsure if they are getting any return on investment from it. At the time, I viewed this as a truly missed opportunity for overall equipment efficiency and the quest for continuous improvement that’s essential to successful manufacturing operations today.

Fast forward to 2010. It’s a different world with a changed manufacturing landscape.

According to the engineering firms interviewed for this cover story, industry consolidation and excess manufacturing capacity have caused processors to metamorphose their operations, leading to more facility renovations, conversions and expansions. To make better use of existing assets, processors have relocated production lines, sometimes completely closing sites that no longer make sense.

Food makers are becoming smarter about ways to save a buck in operational matters. In this economic climate where consumers continue to clip coupons and eat more meals at home, manufacturers continue to invest in existing assets instead of building a new plant. In many cases, it’s not only necessary for the bottom line, it can be good for the planet, too.

Yes, there’s still some low-hanging fruit out there in sustainability, operational efficiencies, changeover time, machinery flexibility, round the clock operations and supply chains. And uncovering it, grabbing it and implementing modifications will lead to the game-changing innovation and manufacturing efficiencies our industry so desires.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Food Engineering Magazine.

Recent Articles by Joyce Fassl, Editor-in-Chief

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

Fabulous Food Plant: Paramount Citrus

Learn more about this fabulous food plant in Food Engineering's article, found here.

Podcasts

Burns & McDonnell project manager RJ Hope and senior project engineer Justin Hamilton discuss the distinctions between Food Safety and Food Defense as well as the implications for food manufacturers of the Food Safety Modernization Act.
More Podcasts

THE MAGAZINE

Food Engineering Magazine

Food engineering magazine 2014 april cover

2014 April

Catch a preview of the Powder and Bulk Show in this April 2014 edition of Food Engineering. Also, be sure to check out a coffee stick making a real stir and a major advancement in the the pet food industry.
Table Of Contents Subscribe

THE FOOD ENGINEERING STORE

Food-Authentication-Flyer-(.gif
Food Authentication Using Bioorganic Molecules

This text provides critical tools and data needed to augment routine food analysis and enhance food safety by aiding in the detection of counterfeit, and potentially deleterious, foods.

More Products

Clear Seas Research

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications,Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

Food Master

Food Master Cover 2014Food Master 2014 is now available!

 

Where the buying process begins in the food and beverage manufacturing market. 

Visit www.foodmaster.com to learn more.

STAY CONNECTED

FE recent tweets

facebook_40.pngtwitter_40px.pngyoutube_40px.pnglinkedin_40px.png