The client

A UK food manufacturing firm serving over ten million consumers a week. They were part of a wider group who were keen to invest in the business due to previous growth and increasing profit margins.

The challenge

The business needed to build stock to enable the factory to move to a bigger site, without disrupting the current supply chain. The old factory was already running three shifts across twenty four hours.



The solution

We discovered that on most production runs the product was running in the middle of the belt, with large portions of the main baking line not being used at either side. By using carefully designed trial procedure the product was spread across the belt and this enabled a 30% increase in the output. In-depth quality tests were done hourly, making sure the product specification remained unchanged.

We also devised ways to ease the job for operators, who had to work a third harder now, by purchasing an electric pallet truck, meaning the job of moving the finished goods to the warehouse was easier even if it was being done more frequently. This idea was supplied by the operators working in conjunction with the project team, and their co-operation and input was a large factor in the success of the overall project.

The factory move was made possible by a 30% increase in volume on baking line and the stock we managed to build up, as it allowed the continuous sale of goods despite the production stopping.

“The best ideas for improving a process comes from the people working on the factory floor day in and day out”

— Annelie Vorster HIC


The result

The project increased throughput by 30% with no additional labour costs. Output quality also improved and overall, production volume increased from 2450 to 3,500 tonnes per hour — yielding an extra £500,000 per annum.

Key Outcomes


Production volume increased

30% increase in throughput

No additional labour costs