Manufacturing Focus: Food & Drink
The Food and Drink sector plays a core role within the UK
manufacturing market-place representing 15% of manufacturing
turnover and employing in excess of 500,000 people. The sector was
affected least through the recent recession period and has
recovered quickest demonstrating its resilience and significance in
Here are some of the industry's key success factors:
- Innovation- New Product Development is absolutely fundamental
to the ongoing success of the sector with approximately 1500 - 2000
new products introduced each quarter, growth particularly within
the Organic and Ready Meal product ranges.
- Exports- The UK food and non-alcoholic drink exports grew to
approximately £6bn in the first half of 2011, a rise of 13%
comparing to the same period in 2010.
- Training and Development- A strong focus is placed within the
sector on developing the workforce to drive a culture of continuous
improvement, skills retention and succession planning.
- Government Support- The importance of the sector is well
documented and, as a result, the government have introduced a
National Food and Drink policy focusing on encouraging
Equally, the Food and Drinks sector operates in a hugely
challenging environment in terms of increasing cost and an
accompanying key focus on healthy eating. Dramatic rises in the
cost of many basic ingredients over the past two years coupled with
energy price spikes are continuing to have a significant impact on
the bottom line for producers and manufacturers. The industry is
also increasingly in the spotlight as governments look to tackle
public health issues such as obesity.
A recent quote from a key figure in the industry does, however,
reflect a genuine advantage the sector has. "It has been a very
tough year for anyone involved in industry ….but …..people do still
have to eat".
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