DSM quantifies quality commitment with Quali-Blends
quality control, formula customisation and environmental programmes
under one brand concept as it refines its differentiation strategy.
"There is increasing concern from consumers surrounding the quality of the products they buy," Gareth Barker, director of global human nutrition and health marketing, told NutraIngredients.com. "Within quality, it is not only the issues surrounding potential contamination but also how sustainable are the methods used by the supplier in producing the product." Quali-Blends will initially apply to DSM's blended formulations and will follow principles established with Quali-C, launched last year to communicate the quality of DSM's vitamin C to its customers in a market dominated by Chinese material DSM has struggled to compete with on price. "We have provided similar security for vitamin C with Quali-C," Barker said. "Reactions from customers and consumers on that programme were very encouraging and so we have adopted a similar approach to blends. We will role this out to more products in the near future." Quali-Blends aims to assert DSM's commitment to quality in all aspects of production across its entire portfolio of vitamins and minerals and other nutrients. Barker said contamination issues had always been present but were being reported more commonly because of better monitoring techniques and greater consumer pressure. DSM's green credentials were a major part of the programme and global marketing manager Martijn Adorf told NutraIngredients.com at the recent Vitafoods show in Geneva that environmentally sustainable supply had become a cornerstone of every aspect of the Dutch multinational's operations. "A shake-out is occurring in ingredients supply," he said. "Consumers are demanding transparency and those companies that can't deliver on that are going to find their business affected." Platforms DSM Quali-Blends is built on five platforms: quality, reliability, traceability, safety and sustainability. "We work to the strictest internal standards which are further supported by independent audits," said Gareth Barker, director of global human nutrition and health marketing. "Our attention to detail covers every aspect of our operation from certified premix plants and dedicated quality control labs to warehousing with dedicated storage zones." He said Quali-Blends formalised its practises and was confident the "approach will resonate with our customers." The company highlighted ongoing manufacturer concerns with contamination issues and product recalls. "There is a clear need to know that ingredients come from a safe and reliable source."Customisation Aside from the environmental and QC benefits, the company placed emphasis on its customisation potential. Increased consumer demand for innovation meant manufacturers had become more demanding of their suppliers and so refined customisation was an issue major suppliers could not afford to shirk. "In the growing market for fortified nutritional products which is driven by relentless consumer demand for innovation, high quality solutions customised to individual requirements are essential," the company said. It said it provided segment-specific premix solutions which delivered QC, warehousing and processing costs to its customers. Areas of focus included staple foods, beverages, infant nutrition and food supplements.