To compete on the international stage Australian manufacturers must be continually innovating in an ever-changing environment.
However to achieve this, and to remain relevant, systems and processes that maintain international quality and safety standards are required.
Kettering Professional Services (Kettering) is one consultancy that focuses on providing business processes and technology solutions to a range of industries, to support manufacturing here in Australia.
Rob Cheesman, Director of Kettering, explained that manufacturing is a massive contributor to the economy. And in the current climate, more than ever, innovative solutions are an imperative.
For more than 16 years Kettering has partnered with family owned Queensland beverage company Bundaberg Brewed Drinks (Bundaberg) and has just recently helped to align their entire brewing and sales process with the globally recognised standard known as Brand Reputation Compliance Global Standard or BRCGS.
Brewhouse Manager, Belinda Desland, explained that Bundaberg’s focus has always been two fold.
“Providing Australians with great tasting, locally sourced brews, as well as growing our international markets, are top priorities for us.”
“Having consumers tell us our products taste great isn’t enough. We also want consumers to trust every bottle leaving our brewery meets the highest level of safety, no matter where they buy it.”
It took Bundaberg 12 months to implement the BRCGS standard across the entire brewing and sales chain.
“The work required to meet, as well as maintain, the BRCGS standard illustrates Bundaberg’s commitment to its customers,” said Ms Desland.
Desland is also quick to recognise that this has only been possible with the successful partnership between Bundaberg and Kettering.
Kettering runs Bundaberg’s Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system using the QAD software application, and Belinda couldn’t be happier with the result.
“This application is the backbone of our operations, doing everything from inventory, sales, finance, wastage reports, and traceability,” said Ms Desland.
Cheesman explained that the QAD application offers the flexibility that many of Kettering’s customers are looking for.
Its application can suit a range of manufacturing verticals including automotive, consumer products, high technology, and life sciences.
“We provide ERP for more than 60 manufacturers of which 25 are food and beverage from high volume bottlers through to specialist ingredients,” said Mr Cheesman.
“For Bundaberg, the QAD software application definitely hit the right mark, and we’ve worked well together to ensure it’s working optimally at every stage of the brewing and sales process.”
Desland agreed commenting that the BRCGS standard is really comprehensive including meeting an annual audit that can take up to three days.
A challenging part of the global standard is the traceability. If there is a report of contamination or a product needs to be recalled the manufacturer needs to identify product locations and ingredient sources, within four hours.
Traceability covers locating the product yet to be despatched, product in transit or where product has arrived at its destination. Other imperatives include where relevant ingredients are stored, or where the waste parts have been disposed of. This includes local as well as international markets.
Confidence that the BRCGS standard is maintained is more vital than ever with Bundaberg supplying to over 60 countries; including, Asian, European, American and British markets.
Reaching out to international markets is a fantastic story for a 50-plus year old Queensland favourite however having the confidence of Australians is just as important.
Bundaberg’s procurement policy states that they look to their own local area and Australia to source their brewing needs. This has resulted in strong working relationships with local growers and transport companies in the Bundaberg region, and demonstrates Bundaberg’s important role in the growth of the local economy.
“This procurement policy is really important to us. We want to ensure Australians have confidence that when they buy our product, they are supporting Aussie farmers and local businesses,” said Ms Desland.
The research confirms this with more Australians actively seeking to buy locally produced products.
90% OF AUSTRALIANS AGED 14+ SAY THEY ARE MORE LIKELY TO BUY PRODUCTS MADE IN AUSTRALIA UP FROM 88% FOUR YEARS AGO.
– Roy Morgan 2019 poll
Desland says that after the pandemic, “it’s more important than ever we support ‘Australian Made’ and global consumers continue to trust Aussie products will be high-quality. This will be critical to our national recovery.”