As an industry-oriented research center MAPP wishes to contribute to dialogue and exchange of experience in the food industry. The product development forum, a network consisting of product developers from a number of food companies is an important initiative in that direction. Demanding consumers and increasing internationalization are just a couple of the factors that challenge food companies' product development. There is therefore a growing need for strengthening the companies' skills to develop successful food products that meet consumer demands. Many problems in this connection run across companies, and an obvious way to improve product development skills is through dialogue with like-minded in a network like the product development forum. Here you can exchange experience, talk about current problems and get inspiration and advice. An important criterion for success in the product development forum is the necessity for intimacy and openness when exchanging experience. The product development forum consists of non-competing food companies producing bread, sweets, chewing gum, spirits, beer, coffee, fish, cheese, meat etc. but also ingredients producers and machine suppliers are represented. MAPP coordinates the product development forum and participates in addition on the same terms as the other participants. The forum meets three to four times a year and discuss a theme agreed upon in advanced. The starting point is a presentation by one of the participants and/or a MAPP researcher after which the problems in question are debated openly and unbiased - without handing out completed results. The themes have until now been related to project management and product development; formulation of a good product development strategy; idea generation; objective management control and use of consumer data in product development. For the companies, the product development forum is mostly about exchange of experience but also about building a close professional and personal network. MAPP benefits from the forum too. A close relationship between food companies and researchers can be useful in connection with future research projects and helps to secure the relevance of future projects initiated by MAPP. Moreover it gives MAPP a possibility to disseminate and discuss theory and research results with relevant target groups.
Annual Report, 2001
MAPP; Erfaringsudveksling; Produktudviklingsforum; Fødevareindustri; Netværk; Exchange of experience; Product development forum; Food industry; Network