Translating Company Values to New Product Development
Almost every company in the world has a value statement or list of principles that was developed to guide the company’s actions. Most of these appear on a wall at headquarters or in a company handbook. They are talked about a couple times a year and then forgotten.
That’s not the case with Bluegrass Ingredients. Our company values directly impact how we approach new product development. In fact, if you look at the dairy powders and wet concentrates we have developed in the last year, you can see a direct correlation between our values and the launch of a new product.
We’re really proud of this, and have established the Agile Kitchen™ in part to showcase how our company values are manifested in new product development. Food and beverage manufacturers can visit this culinary workspace and see how our team of experts analyze trends, predict what’s next and then formulate a dairy powder or wet concentrate that exceeds customer expectations.
If you can’t make it to Bowling Green, however, we wrote this blog post to explain how our company values influence new product development, which helps our customers get to market quickly.
According to our values, “We put our customers’ needs and goals, pressures and timetables at the center of everything we do.” That’s a big statement that leaves no room for excuses. To ensure we transformed this company value into an actual new product development process, we devised the Agile Ingredient Innovation™ model.
The model was built to help food and beverage manufacturers, as well as flavor houses, achieve rapid food innovation to stay ahead of market trends. We couldn’t execute a new product development model like this without our Customer Mindedness value. To rapidly innovate, we need to make sure our customers are the center of our orbit.
We took a Customer Mindedness new product development approach to two recent projects that turned into great new products:
A Savory Cheddar Wet Concentrate that delivers more umami and savory notes than our Cheddar Wet Concentrate.
A unique 4 Cheese Blend Powder that combines popular Italian cheeses, Romano, Parmesan and Asiago, with Cheddar. Clearly, cheddar seems like the odd one out in this blend, but it actually makes perfect sense, adding a creaminess and tanginess to the final product.
We recently developed a Sizzled Cheddar wet concentrate designed to deliver more toasted notes than a standard cheddar dairy concentrate. This new product came from a customer who had a great idea and needed a partner to execute it.
We immediately employed our Collaborative Agility value, which dictates that we work focused, fast, and nimble with our customer to deliver the flavor profile they were seeking. This value also demands a laser focus on results. Obstacles happen, but they should not be dwelled upon. Instead, our team stays focused on the end result, which helps us quickly develop market-ready products.
During this process, we collaborate continuously with the customer, ensuring everyone stays on the same page and moving forward. This company value has resulted in two more exceptional new products:
A Cream Cheese Wet Concentrate that can be used at low percentages to deliver a big cream cheese flavor and mouthfeel.
A new Sour Cream Powder that is smoother, and lower in acidity than our traditional sour cream powder.
This value speaks to the strengths of our culinary and research and development teams: “We are brave enough to try new things.” Yes, we can meet customer requests for a product or match and improve an existing product, but where we truly thrive is in developing new dairy powders and wet concentrates that will meet future consumer trends.
This ability gives our customers a competitive advantage in being first-to-market with products consumers are just starting to crave. We’re particularly proud of these creative new product launches:
A Cheese Cracker Powder that delivers the taste of one of the most popular kids’ snacks in an easy-to-use powder format. The applications are limitless, particularly in the baking industry, to add cheese cracker as either a dominant flavor or subtle note.
An Italian Wet Concentrate that imparts mouthwatering flavor notes of Italian cheeses. This could be used in pasta sauces or dips.
By developing company values that directly influence our new product development process, Bluegrass Ingredient has transformed Agile Innovation into a working process that has proven successful again and again. We’d love to chat more about how our new product development process can benefit your company.