Meeting High Standards—With Every Catch
In business for more than 90 years, King & Prince Seafood manufactures breaded, battered, and seasoned seafood, including fish, shrimp, calamari, crab, and much more. As part of Nissui—the second largest seafood company in the world— King & Prince purchases seafood raw materials via an extensive global product sourcing network. In 2012, King & Prince’s sister company—Gorton’s—introduced King & Prince to InfinityQS SPC software. At the time, Gorton’s was using InfinityQS to achieve total manufacturing data visibility into a line of fish sandwiches they were producing for a major fast food chain. Gorton’s currently uses InfinityQS on all its production lines. Tracy McConnell, Vice President of Technical Services, joined King & Prince that same year. “Gorton’s already had success using InfinityQS, and we wanted to build upon their positive experiences,” says McConnell. King & Prince now uses InfinityQS software at all three of their U.S. plants— across more than 100 processes—to ensure the highest quality of the sustainable seafood purchased from their global supply chain.
InfinityQS software has the easiest database to use that I’ve ever encountered. We have expanded every year since 2012.
Tracy McConnell Vice President of Technical Services
King & Prince Seafood
Minimizing Raw Material Variability
All Seafood is Not Created Equal
High-quality raw materials guarantee high-quality products. At King & Prince, raw materials represent 60-75% of a finished seafood product, and the company relies heavily on the centralized quality data in InfinityQS to quickly spot trends. This enables King & Prince to work closely with suppliers to correct issues—before raw materials get shipped to the United States.
Total visibility into their quality data enables King & Prince to quickly spot trouble areas without having to guess. “We get extremely consistent raw material from the country of origin—regardless of location— thanks to the InfinityQS solution,” says Aaron Scott, Supply QA Manager at King & Prince.
InfinityQS also helps King & Prince better manage the quality of the seafood being purchased from different suppliers—which helps keep the starting product as close to the same as possible—and King & Prince has seen increased value as a result. According to Scott, “When we process raw materials at our U.S. plants, we have a lot more standardization now. Any variability we have is under our control—at the factory level.”
Real-time data visibility enables King & Prince to manage their inputs in the country of origin—reducing variation and letting them focus on their value-added processes in the U.S., where they have more control. Says Scott, “Significant improvements in our % Right First Time metric are evident, and we are consistently working towards a 100% RFT.” Minimizing Raw Material Variability
When we process raw materials at our U.S. plants, we have a lot more standardization—thanks to InfinityQS.
Aaron Scott Supply QA Manager
King & Prince Seafood
Improved Visibility + Shared Best Practices = Competitive Advantage
The Rising Tide of Quality Data in Global Supplier Management
Real-time quality data improves supplier management, regardless of where raw materials are sourced. For King & Prince, InfinityQS provides total oversight of their third-party inspectors—before seafood products leave the country of origin.
When King & Prince digitized their manufacturing processes, they could suddenly view quality data from all points of origin in one centralized database. This digital transformation enables them to quickly and easily analyze quality and manufacturing information—and make smart business decisions. Says Aaron Scott, “The data we collect in InfinityQS totally guides our purchasing and manufacturing processes.” According to McConnell, King & Prince informed global suppliers that using InfinityQS software was “a non-negotiable activity. We need this information to be a better company. Your pen and paper are going away, and you have to use InfinityQS from now on.” To ensure continued buy in, McConnell works closely with suppliers to evolve their system development. And not only does King & Prince use their InfinityQS solution to manage the supply chain, their plant-based procurement managers also use the quality data to determine supplier capability when it comes to producing new items—helping King & Prince determine which suppliers to use.
Bringing in high-quality seafood that meets our tight specifications directly translates into a high-end final product— which positively affects both our revenue and our reputation.
Going Above & Beyond “In Spec”
Ensuring In-spec Seafood: Up & Down the Line
In addition to validating the raw materials that make up 60-75% of every finished product, King & Prince uses InfinityQS software to conduct finished product inspections—adding even more value to the seafood they sell.
Says McConnell, “One of the biggest benefits for us with InfinityQS is in our finished product inspection. InfinityQS enables us to see what we provide to our customers, and because of this we are able to react sooner to prevent issues from making it to customers. This has reduced customer complaints to less than one per million pounds sold—year over year.”
The King & Prince operations team uses the quality data captured by InfinityQS to reinforce changes they need to make upstream, which enables the team to consistently manufacture in-spec products—and to ensure that they remain process capable, which can be a stumbling block for process manufacturers.
Customers demand in-spec products—and if they don’t get them from you, they will look to the competition. McConnell says, “We use Ppk to get measurable information from different suppliers, so we always know who the best supplier is—and we know which suppliers’ products will generate the best product for King & Prince, from both a specification and revenue standpoints.”
Are we capable of making high-quality products, day in and day out? InfinityQS ensures that we are.
A Deep Dive into System Flexibility & Standardization
For King & Prince, system flexibility and ease of use are critical to their successful SPC program—and InfinityQS makes it a snap. Says Aaron Scott, “I thought it would be difficult to set up data configurations in the software, but the product is simple to learn. It is very intuitive and logical.” This ease of use has an added benefit: it makes expansion painless.
When it comes to quality data, standardization is key. King & Prince now requires that users enter all raw materials and supplier data into InfinityQS using the exact same configuration, regardless of who (or where) that data is added. “The system’s ease of use helped us standardize everything—so we ALL speak the same language now,” says Tracy McConnell.
And when something needs to be reviewed or an issue arises, the process for accessing that quality data is the same—for every user. Says Scott, “Since we consolidated all our different processes, all that data is stored in the system across different projects—but users access it the same way. This is very helpful because everyone knows exactly how to find the data they need.
King & Prince employees know that if they need to view real-time quality data—whether microbiology tests, chemical tests, raw material tests, operational data, QA-finished product data, or more—that data resides in the InfinityQS database, and they can quickly and easily locate what they need.
The system’s ease of use helped us standardize everything—so we ALL speak the same language now.
Improving Processes with InfinityQS
Going with the Flow: Giving Consumers What They Want
Food and beverage customers expect—and demand—safe, high quality products. To ensure that their products always exceed customer expectations, King & Prince captures both quality and process data throughout the production process. In the event of a variation, operators simply stop a process and make necessary adjustments—and use quality data to confirm when everything is back on track.
This enables King & Prince to consistently exceed the company’s high standards. In the company’s three U.S. factories, a wide variety of manufacturing production data is tracked and monitored, including: viscosity, temperature measurements, sensor measurements, counts and defects before and after the fryer, and so on.
Says McConnell, “We use InfinityQS to capture nearly every real-time piece of data we produce in our plants—and in all of the laboratories associated with the plants.”
The Upstream & Downstream Benefits of Using InfinityQS
King & Prince uses the quality data entered into InfinityQS four times:
- At the country of origin, by uploading data into the system
- To evaluate the Ppk of key variables and attributes, and compare that data to other suppliers—enabling good capability assessments
- To ensure that the country of origin inspection caught any issues via onsite inspections of key attributes and variables
- To ascertain process capability, and then use that data to gain valuable insight that is applied to new product development
InfinityQS enables us to ensure that we have a fully-compliant product—from start to finish