Belgian bread and the seven feed factories

Dear blog readers,

This week it’s us, Linnea and Axel, who would like to introduce you to our new placements.

For my third rotation, I (Linnea) had the opportunity to pack my bag and bike and move down to Malmö. Here I’m experiencing what many talk about as the “core” of Lantmännen; the Agriculture division and more specific the intriguing world of feed.

Lantmännen has seven feed factories spread over Sweden and here in Malmö our colleagues at the feed unit are busy optimizing feed recipes, purchase feed ingredients and planning the logistics. When putting together an optimal feed recipe the nutritional composition of the finished feed is central, this can however be achieved by mixing ingredients in different ways. The current price level and access of different ingredients is therefore central for what is an optimal recipe at a certain time. This means that recipes are constantly being updated, and we are not talking about four or five recipes – different animals need different feed at different periods of their development – which adds up to over thousand variants. The recipes is however just the start, the logistics to get the ingredients to the factories is of course crucial. Internal and external suppliers of feed ingredients need to provide a steady flow and deliver on time in order for the production to run smoothly. This is where my project comes into the picture. My task is to look into our supplier base of organic feed ingredients – scan a few selected markets and evaluate potential suppliers and certification organs.

ÅhusjpgÅhus Feed Factory, and a bunch of happy trainees during roadtrip in March.

For me (Axel) the new placement has meant the wonderful opportunity to go to the (at least political) capital of Europe, Brussels! Not only do I here get to eat Belgian fries (different to French fries according to the Belgians) and waffles but I also get to understand what it truly means to work in an international environment. For example, just moments before writing this I was in a meeting with Belgian, Dutch and French people which, even though the countries are very close geographically represent three very different markets.

bröd axel1Going around to potential customers and giving them a nice “cadeau” (gift) with a sample our new Mini Rusticos.

As for my project it’s a very interesting and fun one! As someone might have written in the blog before, my project comes out of that the bread factory Lantmännen Unibake had in Londerzeel (outside Brussels) burned down in the summer of 2015. The factory has now been rebuilt and is up and running but there’s still one more line (on which the bread is created) waiting to be ordered. My task is therefore in brief to try and understand the market and to determine how we should market the products which will be produced on the new line. This includes doing a lot of interviews, going into to the field and reading different reports on consumer trends etc. This is very interesting as I get a real understanding of all the so called BeNeFrItEs markets (meaning Belgium, Holland, France, Spain and Italy) and also get to work with marketing which is a completely new area for me!

À la prochaine!

//Linnea and Axel