As a slightly predictable introduction to our shiny new blog, we thought we’d give you a quick overview of our exciting Knowledge Transfer Partnerships with the crazy world of Ella’s Kitchen.
Currently there are two KTPs running between the University of Reading and Ella’s Kitchen: a world class 120 year old academic institution in central Reading, working with a 6 year old innovative little hub in a converted barn near Henley-on-Thames. Dedicated to kick-starting healthy eating habits that last a lifetime, Ella’s Kitchen makes convenient, healthy and fun organic baby and toddler food. As the fastest growing food and beverage company in the UK, it’s always a bit chaotic at the barn – but there’s never a dull day (despite the January weather).
Ella’s Kitchen has always had an innovative approach to everything they do, so they’re a perfect fit for a KTP (or two). One day Ella’s Kitchen would like to be the world’s first global food brand for big little people, so investing in projects like ours helps them to stand out by doing things a little differently. The two KTPs are focussed on different business areas within Ella’s Kitchen. The first is based with the Makes Friends (Marketing) team and the second is with the Makes Stuff Safe (Technical) team. So here’s a brief word from each of us about our roles:
I’m Paul, and I’m working with the Makes Friends team at Ella’s Kitchen and with the University’s Psychology department and the Henley Business School. My project is all about reinforcing the new Ella’s Kitchen strapline “Good In Every Sense” with credible academic research. So far I’ve looked at how children interact with food using all their senses and what can be done to help mums and dads introduce new foods to their children (I’ve also spent several hours balancing on tiny plastic chairs in nurseries across Reading and two exciting days in London with Rachel Stevens …but more on this to come in another blog).
Hi, I’m Catherine, I work with the Makes Stuff Safe team and the University of Reading Food and Nutrition department. My project focuses on developing a Raw Material Quality Management Standard that ensures all of the raw materials used at Ella’s Kitchen are consistently safe and of the best quality. So far I have carried out risk assessments for all of our current ingredients which enable us to mitigate risk and introduce appropriate controls. I work closely with suppliers in order to implement processes and controls. This means I do lots of travelling around which can be anywhere from Yorkshire all the way to Ecuador depending on the ingredient but I will tell you more about my adventures in the next blog. Bye for now!
So that’s us and what we do – congratulations if you’re still reading, you should definitely check back over the next few weeks for more about what we get up to!