For years, Blueberry Guy has preached to the blueberry industry on the importance of keeping processed blueberries in the “Research and Development” pipeline. The rationale: about one half of all of the blueberries produced go to the food processing sector. That is, fillings, bakery items, confections dairy and snacks. A typical grocery store stocks 30,000 items. And at the same time — around 2,500 new items are introduced each month!
These items are developed through a process of research and development or as we say in the business: R & D.
A typical company will have a structure with management on top and then marketing or brand management, production and processing & Quality Control and R&D.
The R&D staff work on the next product for a company. Marketing and management express their direction and R&D will implement. The R&D staff are normally food technologists which degrees and training in food science and sub-fields such as food engineering, microbiology and others. The R & D job is to take general ideas and refine them into products. First they develop prototypes or concepts. These are tested internally and externally. The product is refined, further tested and eventually test marketed. It takes a lot of time and money to bring a product to market.
Also, not very many new products are successful. But, considering that most companies rely on new products for a large chunk of their profits — it is worth the effort. USHBC works with the Marketing and R & D of companies. We engage and learn of the company needs and fill the information gaps with blueberry solutions. Companies look to the USHBC as a partner in product development, and improvement. Together we keep driving blueberries into more and more products that will keep filling the pipeline for years to come.