The company, which was previously known as the National Starch & Chemical Food Products Division, develops nature-based functional and nutritional ingredients and systems. The new initiative reinforces an existing commitment to sustainability though its existing strategy and the overarching strategy of its parent company ICI. But in an industry-wide context, it demonstrates how important sourcing has become when faced with very modern issues such as conservation, climate change and food security. Terry Thomas, divisional VP of the Natural Polymers Group, Europe, stressed that it is important for companies to take a proactive approach in enhancing and refining their practices on a continuous basis. A spokesperson for National Starch Innovation told FoodNavigator-USA.com that the company will be reviewing its practices right from seed crops through to the final food ingredients it develops from them. It plans to assess and manage potential risks every step of the way, through five global standards: Product design and development, product management, distribution and use, suppliers and other services, and material hazards and conservation of resources. Beyond looking at its own practices and suppliers, Thomas added that he hopes the Kernel to Kitchen programme will help to engage National Starch's customers in the strategy. There is also a strong sense of communication of its laudable practices to the company's customers, "so they will see how deeply we are investing in the future of the food industry," said Thomas.