Learn more about the projects we have recently been involved in. To see the projects relating to a specific service offering, use the filter below.

Piloting a "pull" supply-chain with the SPAR Group in the Western Cape

Pull supply chainBlue North, together with our strategic partner CargoSolutions have secured a project with Spar Western Cape to pilot a store replenishment solution utilizing the “pull” replenishment methodology advocated by the Theory of Constraints, and enabled by the Symphony Software Solution (read more on Symphony and the thinking behind it).

We have been engaging with Spar Western Cape over the past 24 months and are excited to now be able to test the merits of the “pull” approach in a real world situation. Prior to the pilot we were involved with CargoSolutions in running extensive simulations in Symphony using Spar’s actual sales and stock data of multiple product lines from multiple stores. The results indicated a significant opportunity to further enhance store-level stock management and to minimize over-stock and out-of-stock situations.

At Blue North we regard the improvement of “flow” as a key element of any sustainability strategy for a business or supply-chain. The Theory of Constraints provides the most powerful methodology to achieve this while Symphony allows the required operating rules to be seamlessly integrated into management decision-making &
improvement processes.

Water Footprint Study - Stems Fruit

Water Footprint

Blue North has just completed a Water Footprint study on stone fruit production in the Western Cape, for Stems Fruit, based on the guidance methodology developed by the Water Footprint Network (WFN). Crop water use was calculated using remote-sensing data from Fruitlook.

The Water Footprints were assessed for early and late season plums; nectarines; and peaches for farms within three regions: Villiersdorp; Robertson and Prince Alfred Hamlet. The water footprint output proved to be a valuable tool for water risk identification across the Stems Fruit value chain, and initiated some interesting discussions.

Blue North has developed a streamlined Water Footprint data collection and calculation tool. We are in the process of developing a full agricultural-focused water service offering, of which Water Footprinting will form a component.

Development of an integrated sustainability management program for The Fruit Farm Group South Africa

The Fruit Farm GroupBlue North has embarked on a project with The Fruit Farm Group South Africa (TFFG-SA) to develop and implement an integrated sustainability risk management and measurement program. The solution to be implemented on the six TFFG-SA farms builds off Blue North’s “bottom-up” thinking and resources aimed at empowering farm-level sustainability strategies and programs.

TFFG-SA has deciduous and sub-tropical fruit farming interests and is part of the international TFFG which also owns and operates fruit farms in South America and Europe. More info on TFFG can be found here.

Sustainable Harvest Programme (SHP) "bolt-on" for the Flower Valley Conservation Trust

Sustainable Harvest Programme (SHP)Blue North has been commissioned by the Flower Valley Conservation Trust to develop a “bolt-on” to the self assessment and improvement management tool of the Sustainable Fruit Initiative, or SFI (read more about the SFI).

The bolt-on will integrate the Sustainable Harvest Programme (SHP) into the SFI, enabling landowners who have areas of natural fynbos that are exposed to wild harvesting to be managed under the SHP guidelines and prescripts and to aid the process toward licensing for harvesting activities as well as SHP certification.

The SHP is a toolkit of sustainable practice aimed at supporting those who harvest fynbos from natural fynbos areas to manage their activities with the goal of ensuring the sustainability of harvested species and the Cape Floral Kingdom, which has hundreds of species on the Red Data endangered species list. Read more about the SHP here.

CCC Carbon Footprinting Tool


Project Aim:

Develop a Carbon Footprinting Tool to form part of the South African Fruit and Wine Industry’s Confronting Climate Change (CCC) Initiative.

Project Outcome:

Blue North is very pleased to announce that the Carbon Trust has recently completed an independent audit of the Carbon Footprinting Tool that forms a key part of the South African Fruit and Wine Industry’s Confronting Climate Change (CCC) Initiative, one of Blue North’s strategic projects in the industry.

SCHIP online supply chain management application


Project Aim:

Develop an online application exclusively for the Chingford Fruit Limited (Chingfords) supply chain, to provide visibility across their supply chain and streamlined integration with other financial and reporting systems.

Project Outcome:

SCHIP has been developed by Sigma Freight, a UK-based software company that specialises in providing solutions to the freight and logistics industry. The SCHIP application is available to packhouses, exporters, freight forwarders and freight clearers within the Chingfords supply chain.

Blue North Sustainability manages the SCHIP project on behalf of Chingford Fruit Limited in South Africa.  This involves meeting with the suppliers and freight forwarders in South Africa to introduce the software and provide training.  Business and operational processes are then set up and aligned within these companies to use the SCHIP application.

Development of Sustainability Self-Assessment Tools


Project Aim:

Develop a range of commodity-specific Sustainability self-assessment tools for the UK retailer J.Sainsbury’s.

Project Outcome:

The tools, which reflect our experience in supporting farm-level buy-in and engagement in sustainability programs, are designed to serve first and foremost as value-adding management tools for farm owners and managers.

As such, the tools contain comprehensive guidance notes and reporting features aimed at supporting farmers in the the proactive identification of risks and opportunities affecting the long term productivity and viability of their farming businesses.

The intention is that the tools will be deployed as part of the roll-out of J.Sainsbury’s sustainability strategy across all of its key commodities.

Learn More at Sainsbury’s 20×20 Sustainability Plan