“Sustainability is a mindset, not an add on” says global manufacturer

Posted on 14 Nov 2018 by Maddy White

During Smart Factory Expo, TM attended a speech delivered by Nigel Davies, Technical & Sustainability Director at Muntons plc, who told TM, "Sustainability is a mindset, not an add on."

Nigel Davies is pictured - image courtesy of TM.
Nigel Davies is pictured – image courtesy of TM.

Muntons is a leading global manufacturer in the supply of malts, malt extracts, flours, flakes and many other malted ingredients in the food and drinks industry.

In addition, the company also manufacture an extensive range of beer, wine and cider making kits. In total, around half of its production is exported globally.

The business has been producing malt and malted ingredients for over 90 years, and during this time it has grown to become a significant international player in the sector.

Muntons produce 195,000 tonnes of malt per year at plants in Stowmarket, Suffolk, Bridlington and East Yorkshire, which could be considered a relatively small amount. When it comes to malted ingredients however, they are arguably the largest in the world, producing around 50,000 tonnes per year in Stowmarket.

The business provide some of the largest global food and drink manufacturers with malt, and therefore remain vital in the supply chain. But, big on Muntons agenda is, sustainability.

Sustainability is not waiting on a new technology, it’s a mindset

In his speech at Manufacturing Leaders’ Summit, this forms part of Smart Factory Expo, Europe’s biggest digital manufacturing show, Davies said: “Sustainability is a mindset, not an add on. And really, you can manipulate data to show that, but we want to engage our data and consumers of our products in a meaningful, honest way.”

Muntons produce 195,000 tonnes of malt per year - image courtesy of Depositphotos.
Muntons produce 195,000 tonnes of malt per year – image courtesy of Depositphotos.

Davies explains the business calculates carbon and water footprints, how they can reduce energy, raw material usage and waste, to ultimately shrink environmental impacts.

He said exclusively to TM: “Sustainability is not waiting on a new technology. Our customers say, ‘you make sustainability seem simple.’ But really if things are complicated in your own mind then of course it is going to be more complicated for anyone else. It’s not dumbing it down, it is just taking a simpler approach.”

It is no secret that if a business wants to remain competitive in the long-term, they need to recognise sustainability as a core part of their business plan.

Consumers are more aware than ever of environmental impacts that businesses contribute, and alongside this factories need to align with political policy surrounding the environment.

Whether that is optimising their wastage, production, water usage, energy efficiency, or all of the above, businesses now need to consider this crucial.

Smart Factory Expo is Europe’s largest digital manufacturing show – presenting the most extensive free programme of presentations across seven stages, 150+ exhibitors, and thousands of digitally-savvy manufacturers.

It is the largest component of Digital Manufacturing Week, an annual celebration of UK manufacturing excellence that takes place every November in Liverpool. This year saw 5,322 visitors to Digital Manufacturing Week (up 36% on 2017).

Clear your diary and join us next year: 13-14 Nov 2019!

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