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Made Smarter gives food and drink industry the ingredients for digitalisation with free guide

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Made Smarter gives food and drink industry the ingredients for digitalisation with free guide

Made Smarter gives food and drink industry the ingredients for digitalisation with free guide
November 23
09:47 2021
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SMEs in the food and drinks industry are being offered a free guide to give them the ingredients for digitalisation. The downloadable document has been produced by Made Smarter, the North West technology adoption programme, a collaboration between UK government and industry designed to support the increased use of digital technologies.

The guide includes topics such as how to get started with digital technologies, infrastructure management, increasing control, reducing waste and boosting sustainability, enhancing traceability, and how to hit new trends.

The programme has worked with dozens of SMEs in the food and drink sector, including breweries and distilleries.

Through impartial expert technology advice and match funding on technology projects, digital transformation workshops to help manufacturers take their first steps, a leadership programme, digital technology internships, and skills development, Made Smarter is helping businesses in the sector increase productivity, achieve sustainable growth, and create new high value jobs.

Having already supported hundreds of businesses to deliver an additional £176 million in gross value added and create hundreds of new jobs, Made Smarter is now keen to reach more manufacturers to aid the growth of the North West’s £3.3 billion food and drink industry which employs more than 45,000 people.

Among the businesses reaping the benefit of Made Smarter support are: Antonelli Bros, a manufacturer of ice cream cones, based in Irlam; Lancashire Farm Dairies, a natural yogurt producer based in Rochdale; Bells of Lazonby, the family baker based in Penrith; Bell Mount Farming, a free-range egg farmer in Penrith; Len Wright Salads, a prepared salad manufacturer based in Tarleton; Flavourfresh Salads, a salad and fruit producer based in Southport; Cranstons Quality Butchers, based in Penrith; the Bury Black Pudding Company; Dewlay Cheesemakers, based in Garstang; Applied Nutrition, a manufacturer of sports nutrition products, based in Kirkby;

The Protein Works, a manufacturer of protein powders, snacks, supplements, and foods, based in Runcorn; Blends Holdings, a manufacturer of specialist food ingredients, based in Knowsley; Kendal Nutricare, based in Kendal, a manufacturer of nutrition products including infant formulas and baby cereals; The Protein Lab, a manufacturer of protein powders and supplements based in Blackpool; My Fish Company, based in Fleetwood, supplying sustainably sourced fish and seafood to hotels and restaurants; Lansdale Nurseries, a vegetable producer in Ormskirk; Fylde Fresh and Fabulous, a potato producer in Preston; Shed 1 Distillery, a craft gin producer, based in Ulverston; Friars, a chocolatier, based in Keswick; Nutree Life, a manufacturer of vegan and free-from protein bars, based in Burscough; Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses, based in Preston; and Eden River Brew Company, based in Penrith.

Alain Dilworth, North West Adoption Programme Manager at Made Smarter, said: “While the North West is home to some of the food and drink industry’s biggest names such as Nestle, Heinz, and Kellogg’s, it is also brimming with innovative small and medium sized enterprises across the entire supply chain, working hard to ensure we continue to enjoy our favourite food and drink from farm to fork.

“The triple challenge of the pandemic, Brexit and the net zero agenda, have created a perfect storm for the food and drink industry, impacting SMEs more than most. But despite these pressures, many of these businesses have shown resilience and determination to keep up with the fast moving industry and are working with Made Smarter on their digital transformation.

“From using robotics and process control technologies to improve sustainability and automating data collection points to create a line of traceability, technologies are not only helping producers overcome challenges, but also unlock a whole host of opportunities.

“To help demystify digitalisation and help SMEs to their first step, we have produced some crucial guidance as well as explained why implementing digital tools is such a priority in this sector.”

To download the free guide visit:

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