Mission in South Africa
As a senior expert for the PUM The Netherlands senior experts Theo Ockhuizen was invited for a consulting mission to Food and Cosmetic Technologies (FaCT) in Durban, South Africa.
FaCT is an energetic, young company. FaCT has an ambitious management looking for sustainable growth. The current focus is on microbiological and analytical- chemical determinations in food. The R&D section has been and is successful in food innovation.
The newly designed food products are produced in the sister company SmartFood, either as a private label for the South African food industry or under their own SmartFood label.
During a two-week intensive working period advice was given as to general management, finance, project management, new services and the R&D portfolio. Based on a competitor analysis areas for extension were identified, e.g. food safety, environmental safety and food product reformulation and innovation.
In realizing this growth ambition 4 major points were recognized, e.g. 1. focus on the market approach, 2. intensify customer communication, 3. invest in state of the art laboratory equipment and 4. continued education of the personnel to increase skills and expertise.
Mission in Burundi
As a senior expert for the PUM The Netherlands senior experts Theo Ockhuizen provides SOFOTEC in Bujumbura, Burundi with scientific, managerial and business advice.
SOFOTEC is a small, local enterprise which gives dietetic consultation and produces organic, dietetic health products from local fruits and vegetables. SOFOTEC combines information on medicinal traditional tropical foods with modern nutritional knowledge. The dietetic health products are produced on demand. SOFOTEC wants to grow and enter the local market with its health products.
The first mission took place in July 2013. In 2014 Theo Ockhuizen was on a follow up mission. The goal of both missions was to give SOFOTEC advice on managerial, financial, technical and strategic developments. The managerial advice focuses on improved planning and budget control. The financial advice concentrates on a better bookkeeping and the use of the seed money as working capital to make stocks of the top 3 selling products.
PUM supplied SOFOTEC with a grant from the Hans Blanker Fund, which was used for purchasing processing equipment. Technically SOFOTEC needs to develop a Quality Assurance and Quality Control (QA/QC) system for product authorization. In the strategic plan the focus is on the prevention of nutrition related diseases (realizing an optimal health; larger target group) rather than on patients (limited number of clients).