McCain food plants, located in Timaru, New Zealand, have been working closely with implementing various initiatives and strategies to optimize their supply chain’s functionality. What has been their main focus?
Sonny Quilliam, Production Manager at McCain explains, ““We’d picked all the low hanging fruit through previous work but we needed ideas to generate more energy and water saving opportunities. We knew they were there but we needed to shine a light on possibilities.”
The management at McCain then decided to stop thinking so hard, and utilized the resources they had right in front of them; their employees.
Twenty individuals were selected, representing all parts of the factory’s inter-workings from management to factory floor workers in order to represent the variety of positions and professions present within the factory's daily operations. The group delved into the plant, with critical eyes, in order to evaluate the energy efficiency of the plant’s production. From this, a spreadsheet of 113 energy efficient ideas was developed including, but not limited to, “ the optimisation of refrigeration systems, recycling heated water and fixing general leaks” (Supply Chain Digital 2017).
Quilliam summarized that he believes the implementation of these initiatives could save thousands of dollars a year, while adding value to the local community and business by using less water and energy related resources.
The most amazing part of it all is that the strategy was developed from the competencies of the individuals already present in McCain’s preexisting workforce. McCain is a leading example for displaying that sometimes the best supply chain strategies are sitting right in front of you. Utilizing the competencies and tools that are already at the disposal of your business is the mark of true sustainable thinking and development.