Lauras International

Date: 15th November 2011
For immediate release

Cereal Giant Wins Major Awards With Help from Manufacturing Consultancy

A multi-national manufacturing consultancy is celebrating the news that one of its clients has been crowned Food Manufacturer of the Year after taking on board a programme of suggestions to improve its production processes.

Popular UK cereal manufacturer Weetabix worked with the UK-based European office of Lauras International on a six-month manufacturing development programme. This resulted in such significant improvements in both production and wastage figures that the company has just triumphed in the Food Manufacturing Excellence Awards, winning both Ambient Manufacturing Company of the Year as well as the overall Food Manufacturing Company of the Year. The awards were presented last week at a ceremony in London.

Weetabix was described by the awarding judges as ‘a beacon for excellence in food manufacture’. Chairman of the judges Paul Wilkinson remarked: “Weetabix is an absolutely fantastic story; everything from category management, to innovation and productivity. It is an integrated response to food manufacturing excellence.”

Lauras International’s work with Weetabix focussed on supporting productivity improvement in the production of the company’s cereal bars, and the most dramatic results included an improvement in output of over 50% and a reduction in waste of 80%. Weetabix was able to enhance the quality of its products whilst significantly reducing energy consumption and customer complaints.

Strong employee engagement was a key factor in achieving such amazing results. Weetabix unit management teams drove forward the programme, which included a series of workshops to train all Weetabix personnel in Rapid Lean techniques. This shop-floor led approach enables operators and technicians to make improvements themselves, and delivers substantial savings in a short space of time, whilst also providing the tools and techniques needed to achieve long-term, sustained improvement.

Jeremy Praud, who heads up Melbourne-based Lauras’s European office, says “We are delighted to have played a part in Weetabix winning these awards. To achieve this sort of success it’s vital to help managers to recognise that their most precious resource is their people, and to get everyone in the company on board with the programme – which is just what Weetabix did. However, it’s just as important that the process continues into the future, after our hands-on involvement has finished; to ensure this we have also helped Weetabix to set up an ongoing mentoring programme”.


For more information on Lauras International visit

For more information on Weetabix Ltd visit

For more information on the Food Manufacturing Excellence Awards visit

Notes to editors

· Jeremy Praud (MEng [Elec & Elec Eng], MIEE, MIOD) has over 10 years’ experience of implementing sustained improvement in manufacturing and distribution. Instrumental to the growth of Lauras in UK and Europe, he has a long track record of delivering successful improvement, above expectations both in terms of bottom line results, and sustained change. Introduced to rapid improvement in the paper industry in the 1990s, he moved into line management roles with Cadbury Schweppes and Nestle Purina before joining Lauras in 2002 and working across Australia, the UK, Canada, France, and Spain.

· The Food Manufacturing Excellence Awards provide a benchmark for all those wishing to aspire to world class standards in food excellence. The awards are dedicated to recognising and rewarding the very best food and drink manufacturing companies. They honour and highlight those companies that have displayed progress and achievements through their manufacturing process in this competitive and fast moving industry. These awards differ from other industry awards in that they recognise manufacturing achievements rather than end products. The awards highlight success in all areas of the manufacturing process including new product development, category management, quality assurance, supply chain improvement, environmental management, process innovation and human resource development.