Increasing Purchasing and Plant Efficiencies for Food & Beverage Manufacturers

It is no mystery that food and beverage manufacturers are constantly trying to innovate and create new products to keep up with ever-changing consumer trends. Traditional food and beverage products are being replaced more and more with things like plant-based sauces and dips, sugar-free soft drinks, and non-dairy alternatives every day. Many of these products have a long shelf-life and may undergo difficult processing conditions during production. Carefully chosen ingredients such as stabilizers, hydrocolloids, and sweeteners are needed to provide emulsification, stability over shelf-life, and sensational taste. Finding the right supplier partner like IFPC (International Food Products Corporation) who understands how these ingredients work is key to increasing purchasing and plant efficiencies. Any way manufacturers can simplify their production and ingredient purchasing process will help avoid any issues that could potentially arise. Our solution – custom ingredient blends.

There are numerous issues that can occur for food and beverage manufacturers in both their production and purchasing processes. From a production standpoint, things like clumping, separation, and unwanted taste profiles can occur during production. The ingredients you are using in your process are very important to the outcome of your finished product. Without a technical team to help test and troubleshoot issues, figuring out how to fix your production issues can be very time-consuming and costly. In addition, as much as we all try to avoid them, mistakes can occur during the purchasing process. So, simplifying this process by consolidating your supplier partners is a no-brainer. Most large raw material suppliers demand minimum order requirements and force manufacturers to tie up money in inventory. Many of these companies do not have the floor space or storage, so they must order more frequently which causes multiple transactions thus allowing additional room for error in the process.

To avoid these issues while increasing purchasing and plant efficiencies, look no further than IFPC’s custom ingredient blends. They reduce room for error for manufacturers when making finished products. Production workers no longer must weigh all the individual ingredients separately as we standardize the usage level of our blends per the customer’s batch size. “Our customers can just add a bag or several bags per batch rather than weighing up pounds. Also, micro-ingredients are typically very expensive or highly functional. So, if you accidentally measure up too much or too little, the end-product would maybe not have the proper color, taste, and/or texture. You could even end up dumping a batch or wasting expensive ingredients, which is very costly,” says An Ho, Director of Research and Development at IFPC. “By utilizing IFPC for our blending capabilities, you can reduce the number of products you are ordering. Manufacturers do not have to tie up inventory dollars and worry about stocking up on individual ingredients.”

Some of our biggest partners are dairy manufacturers. “We supply them with custom-blended chocolate dairy powders and stabilizer blends. All they must do is process them with their milk to create the products you see on retail store shelves. We remove several steps from their production and purchasing process, helping avoid costly mistakes,” states Mathew Brady, Marketing Specialist at IFPC.

Sugar reduction and replacement are some of the most popular consumer trends manufacturers face today. Alternative sweeteners such as stevia, allulose, monk fruit, and erythritol have different attributes and taste profiles. Determining which sweeteners and what amount works best for your product are key. These sweeteners typically work best when blended – and IFPC develops the perfect blend for your product. “Sugar is a difficult ingredient to replace because it provides more than just sweetness in a product – removing sugar can also affect viscosity and mouthfeel. The synergy created by a multiple-sweetener, such as our Legacy™SWEET SP 9704, can help reduce these problems. The right combination of sweeteners will create a flavor profile that better resembles that of sugar, instead of the bitter, metallic, and lingering aftertastes commonly associated with high-intensity sweeteners. By hitting several sweetness receptors at one time, the perceived mouthfeel of the product is greatly enhanced,” comments Charlie Hall, Food Technologist at IFPC.

From a purchasing perspective, we help food and beverage manufacturers consolidate their vendors by being a one-stop-shop. Instead of buying multiple ingredients from multiple suppliers, we can supply manufacturers with certain things they need in a custom ingredient blend. The ingredient blends that we develop utilize ingredients that we purchase in large amounts. Therefore, we have buying power due to volume discounts from raw material suppliers making it more cost-effective for our customers to purchase from us. Manufacturers do not have to deal with minimum order quantities from those raw material suppliers and they do not have to use up inventory dollars on stocking up on individual ingredients. Another bonus is that all the ingredients are in one blend, coming from one location – IFPC’s production plant. This minimizes freight rates as opposed to purchasing from various suppliers and sourcing from several locations across the country or even internationally.

All our custom ingredient blends are produced at Aviator – our best-in-class manufacturing, storage, and distribution facility located in St. Louis, MO. Our SQF-certified facility offers customers both liquid-blending and dry-blending capabilities, contains state-of-the-art temperature-controlled storage areas, and houses an impressive 18,000-pallet vertical stacking system. Aviator has bag and bulk packaging capabilities, state-of-the-art labs, superior quality control testing and validation, and strict regulatory adherence and allergen control. We can blend in 300-pound volumes and above and offer heat-sealed packaging. Aviator is GFSI certified, Vaad Hoeir Kosher certified, Grade A certified and Organic certified by OneCert Organic. In addition, the facility offers customers an up-close and real-time view of each of our manufacturing lines in operation.

Furthermore, we also have a technical services group that can be on-site at the customer’s plant to oversee that our blend functions properly or for trial runs of new products. We can give helpful suggestions on processing adjustments that can be made to yield a better-finished product or increase efficiencies. We can also troubleshoot issues that might be causing problems such as microbial issues, mixing times, temperature control, packaging problems, stability issues, and more.

Increasing purchasing and plant efficiencies for food and beverage manufacturers with our custom ingredient blends is IFPC’s goal. “From a purchasing perspective, we add value by leveraging our buying power and vendor relationships to provide economical and functional blends to our customers. With our technical expertise, we can offer solutions when ingredients become unavailable, providing options to reduce the impact on budgets. In today’s ever-changing markets, IFPC’s product experts, supply chain team, and R&D all work together to mitigate risk and create a sense of security for buyers,” says Jenn Adams, Business Development Manager at IFPC. Our in-house research and development team has over 45 combined years of experience in product development, troubleshooting, sourcing, and product testing. Whether you are looking to develop a new product, change an existing formulation, or match a formula, we can assist you in every step along the way. Get in touch with an IFPC representative today!

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