Better processes make good eats
Food industry can benefit from lean Six Sigma principles
By Tina Kovach and Rae Cho
The food industry is a huge, collective, diverse business with a complex network that ranges from farming to production to packaging to distribution. In the United States, consumers spend more than $1 trillion annually on food, equivalent to nearly 10 percent of gross domestic product. Given the fact that food energy is consumed by the world population on a daily basis, the concept of continuous quality improvement in the food industry is extraordinarily critical. One tool for better food quality is the reinvigorated philosophy of lean Six Sigma, which has a proven record for continuous improvement and an ability to boost processes.
Unfortunately, there has been little implementation of lean Six Sigma in the food industry. But hands-on experiences and a brief lean Six Sigma case study show the possibilities for continuous quality improvement in the food industry.
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