This report is about the food processing company- Absolute foods. The report examines the concept of lean thinking, principles and processes. It analyses the kinds of wastes and the implications and challenges for applying lean in Absolute foods. The recommendations are provided in relation to applying lean. The second part is about KFC that reflects on the five principles of lean and explains the benefits of implementing lean for the business performance of KFC.
This report is based on the Scotland based food processing company called “Absolute foods”. The purpose of the report is to create greater understanding of the lean concept in food processing company and to find out the implications while implementing lean in the global business environment. The report will cover the development of the lean philosophy, principles and processes, lean in food industry relating with Absolute foods, implications and challenges and recommendations to Absolute foods. On the second part of the report, the benefit of implementing lean on the fast food chain KFC business will be analysed. The source of information for this reports are journals, internet and books that are related with the concept of lean.
According to Hines et al (2004) the concept of lean is originated from the companies in Japan and particularly from the Toyota production system. The concept of lean has its origin after the World War II and the study has been mostly done in manufacturing companies. Womack et al (1990) in the book “machine that changed the world” mentioned that lean originated by combining the important aspects of craft and mass production. Lean thinking came in light after the publication of this book. Since the publication of this book many studies has been performed (Womack and Jones, 1996; Hines et al, 2004). Mass production started to result in the creation of many problems, which was not adding any benefits for the company and lean concept of lean started to emerge. Shah and Ward (2003) mentions that lean is multi-dimensional and includes many management practices, just in time, work teams, quality systems, supplier management and many more. Womack and Jones (1996) adds that lean thinking intents in reduction of human effort, inventory, the delivery time and delivers the product in high quality and economical way. Abdulmalek and Rajgopal (2007) augments that the main aim of lean approach is reducing cost by eliminating non-value added activities. Toyota Corporation has proved to be a success by implying the concept of lean. According to Abdulmalek and Rajgopal (2007) some of the main tools of lean are cellular manufacturing (developing the entire process for a product in a cell), JIT (Just in time- customer demands and pulling all the way down), Kanban (signalling for implementation of JIT), TQM (Total quality management- system of continuous improvement which assists participative management and values the customer needs) and 5S’s (Sort, Straighten, Shine, Standardise and sustain- for organising the workplace and standardising the work place.