When food producers pledge to reduce their environmental impact, their technology suppliers should offer solutions to address their key concerns and evolve with customer needs over time. Success requires a continuous improvement mindset in the solutions they provide – sustainable technologies being one of them.
Focus on continuous improvement in food production
Current research and analysis of the current structure will help identify areas for improvement and enable the technology provider to act as a better partner to its customers. Identifying technology solution providers that have this relentless mindset of continuous improvement is an indicator of a partnership that will continually support the business, and as a result increase returns and achieve sustainability goals.
Food and drink producers should also be keen to engage with technology providers who are developing their internal sustainability efforts, particularly those who prioritise health and environmental considerations in products, facilities and processes, use energy and natural resources efficiently and encourage constructive communication with key stakeholders and others.
Lifetime of the equipment
Technology that suits a customer’s current needs is important, but it is also important to consider options that are both reliable and can adapt to future needs. Producers should identify suppliers who prioritise sustainability during the design phase, which also ensures that they will get the most out of each machine purchase for many years to come.
They should also look for suppliers offering equipment refurbishment solutions. JBT’s Proseal, for example, developed a “No Good Machine Left Behind” program that makes preventive upgrades to older machines around the world. As a result, customers benefit from performance improvements, while preventing the machine from becoming obsolete and inoperable.
Such programmes promote the circular economy, reducing both the need for new machinery and the demand for raw materials and energy, while keeping useful materials in circulation.
There are countless factors to consider when choosing a supplier or partner. If improving sustainability performance is a priority, it should be reflected as much as possible in business decisions. Investing in new technology is an important decision, as the right machines will last for years, if not decades. Over time, and with the right partners who value the climate, the right technology will help companies achieve their sustainability goals and help them reduce their negative impact on the environment.