Practical Solutions International

About PSI

Practical Solutions International offers practical help in Ethical, Sustainability and Safety.

Practical Solutions International is a dynamic consultancy. We can provide a unique mix of technical and new product development skills through flexible work solutions.

Our goal is to excel in all we do.

Who we are

Ian Finlayson (based in the UK) - ian@psi-advantage.com

Professional Experience

Ian spent 16 years with Sainsbury's in various food and non-food technical management positions, latterly managing technical and product development of the grocery and snacking areas, accounting for over £2b of sales, 10,000 products, and involving relationship management of 450 suppliers.

Ian has worked as technical director of several food companies working across multiple sites. He has extensive experience of managing serious product incidents. He is a member of the Fairtrade Standards Committee, a member of the DEFRA Pesticide Residues in Food Committee and was involved in the inception and launch of Assured Produce and Global GAP.

Sector Specific Expertise

Ambient Canned and Dry Grocery (including rice, pasta, herbs etc); Confectionery; Crisps and Snacks; Soft Drinks; Cut Flowers; Garden Centre Plants; Prepared Produce; Salads; Vegetables; Fruit.

Key Skills

Food Safety and Quality Assurance; HACCP; Pesticides and Residue Analysis; Fairtrade and Ethical Trade; BRC and IFS assessments; Mentoring and Coaching.

Training

Lead Assessor; BASIS; Advanced HACCP & Food Safety level 4; Campden Canning Course; SA8000 Ethical Auditing course, Cranfield Non-Executive Directors Course.

Amy (Based in South Africa)

Professional Experience

Amy has over 16 years’ experience working in fresh produce retail and supply. She worked as a Technical Manager in Produce for Tesco in the United Kingdom for over six years, the majority of which was spent as Citrus Fruit Technical Manager. Following her career at Tesco, Amy joined a young, innovative food company, initially managing produce, and developing frozen poultry products. A new supply base was developed, working mainly in Central European countries; gaining technical approval to meet the most stringent of retail standards, including Tesco Food Manufacturing Standard and Welfare standards. New product development of coated poultry products and seasonal party food lines resulted in successfully winning major retail accounts. In 2010, Amy moved to Cape Town, South Africa, where she used her produce expertise to take one of South Africa’s biggest apple and pear producers from a secondary packing site to achieve direct supply to Tesco UK.

Sector Specific Expertise

Fruit; vegetables; salads; prepared salads; frozen poultry products

Key Skills

Food Safety and quality assurance auditing and implementation; HACCP; Ethical trade; specification management; agricultural standards (Global GAP, Tesco Nurture); training and mentoring of quality control teams, Tesco Technical Library.

Training

ISO9000 Lead Auditor BRC Global Standard (Food Issue) HACCP Implementation and management (CCFRA) Managing microbiological hazards (CCFRA) Microbiology of Fresh Produce (CCFRA) Bureau Veritas Social Accountability and Ethical Auditing Sensory Evaluation training Pesticides Certificates of Competence Tesco Nurture Tesco Technical Library Range Management (Tesco Stores Ltd)

Bill (based in the UK)

Professional Experience

Bill has wide experience in food manufacturing and retail, including over 7 years as an independent technical consultant, 9 years at Safeway Stores and various positions with food manufacturers, managing and developing teams of technologists covering food safety, new product development, supplier approval and product assurance.

Sector Specific Expertise

Dairy (Milk, Cream, Yogurts, Desserts, Spreads, Eggs, Cheese); Bakery (Bread, Cake, In Store Bakery, Biscuits & Coffee Shops); Grocery (Confectionery, Snacks, Beverages, Canned and Packet Goods); Chilled (Ready Meals, Delicatessen products, Pies, Sandwiches).

Key Skills

Manufacturing operation & design; Supplier approval; Audit; Improvement; Knowledge of retailer standards and requirements; BRC/IFS assessments; Team management & development

Training

HACCP/Auditing, BS5750/Lead Assessor trained, Time Management, Ethical Trade Initiative - Corporate Social Responsibility support

Caleb (based in Kenya)

Professional Experience

Caleb is a results-driven Agribusiness Sustainability professional with experience spanning over 15 years of successfully building and supporting agri-businesses within highly competitive performance environments within Eastern Africa. Implementation of Food safety, Good Agricultural Practice and social-ethical and environmental requirements and assurance systems and lately on climate change adaptation and resilience.

Sector Specific Expertise

Agricultural supply-chains, especially flowers and vegetables

Key Skills

Assistance with technical/ environmental/ ethical standards- Fairtrade, ETI Base code, Rain Forest Alliance-UTZ, BRC, MPS, BOPP, LEAF

Training

Lead assessor completing (1st, 2nd and 3rd Party audits)

John (based in Vietnam)

Professional Experience

With a UK based business and a dedicated business in Vietnam John is a dedicated professional with over 25 Years’ experience in the Fresh, Frozen and prepared produce sector. Board Member at Hoan Vu Analytical laboratory in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Principal Participant in the "Vietnamese Food Integrity Centre" established May 2018

Sector Specific Expertise

Fully trained Biologist with a specialization in Crop production and Protection, highly specialized in Agronomy, General agriculture with Exotic and Ethnic fruits and vegetables, Citrus, Root crops and Salads. IQF, prepared Fruit and Salads.

Key Skills

Assistance in all aspects of Crop and Factory Certification (HACCP, BRC, ISO, Global Gap, SMETA), Supply Chain Analysis

Training

Level 3 HACCP, Tesco Technical Library and Produce Training, Sainsbury Technical Manager Academy, M & S F2F V5, 0,1 & 2

Kirsty (based in New Zealand)

Professional Experience

Kirsty has 18 years technical food experience working for manufacturers, retailers and as a technical consultant in New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Europe. Kirsty has worked for Nestlé and Sainsbury’s for 6 years in technical and product development roles, developing products from concept to launch, factory design and layout, packaging, food safety, new product approvals, supplier approval and product assurance.

Sector Specific Expertise

Meat Industry (farm to fork); Produce (farm to fork); Dairy Industry; Hot Beverages; Wine, Beer and Cider.

Key Skills

Manufacturing design and operation; HACCP; Supplier Approval; Auditing; Factory and Farm Standards; UK Knowledge of Retailer Standards and Requirements, Food Safety and Quality Assurance, BRC compliance.

Training

Bachelor of Technology, Lead Assessor, Ethical Trade, Sainsbury’s Technical Academy, GSCOP, Allergen Management, MENGNZ.

Linda (based in the UK)

Professional Experience

Linda has over 19 years’ experience in various food technical management roles with retail, food service and manufacturing. She has managed technical and product development across a number of sectors. In the recent years, Linda has become involved with training of food industry management in HACCP, auditing and BRC. She is also involved in the technical analysis of companies, trouble shooting and helping to develop technical strategies.

Sector Specific Expertise

Ambient grocery (Pasta, Rice, Cooking Oil, Tea, Coffee, Beverages, Biscuits, Cereals, Crisps, Nuts and Snacks, Canned Goods); Ready Meals; Fish; Poultry; Salads, Fruit and Vegetables; Processed Meats; Desserts; Bakery; Dairy.

Key Skills

Training; Auditing (second and third party); Coaching and Mentoring; Communication and Problem Solving.

Training

MBA (Cranfield School of Management), Lead Assessor, Leatherhead Chocolate and Confectionery Course, CCFDRA course on Bakery, YUM University courses in Bread, Cheese, Tomato and Meat Technologies, Poultry Inspection Training (PIA), various Microbiology courses.

Manal (based in Egypt)

Professional Experience

Experienced technical director operating in Egypt, extensive auditing and QMS knowledge in Global GAP and BRC standards in fresh produce. Significant influencer and practitioner in ethical standards eg ETI and Fairtrade, including social auditing.

Sector Specific Expertise

Fresh produce experience- especially fruit and vegetables.

Key Skills

Lead auditor on Good Agricultural Practices and Factory Standards (GAPs, TPPS, TNC, supplier audits, WRFA, ethical compliance, M&S Select Farm Produce Auditor). Development of quality systems to meet European retailer requirements.

Training

Good Agricultural Practices (including Global GAP, TNC), External auditor, BSCI and Sedex for Ethical standards, Waitrose Farm Assessment Course.

Mary (based in the UK)

Professional Experience

Mary has more than 25 years’ experience in food retail and manufacturing industry, including 10 years as an independent technical consultant and 15 years at Sainsbury’s Supermarkets managing and developing technical teams covering food safety, supplier approval and new product development. Mary is an experienced Interim Technical Manager and has operated at technical director level within private label and branded grocery businesses. She has worked with most UK retailers and is aware of their standards.

Sector Specific Expertise

Ambient Grocery (Pasta, Rice, Cereals, Nuts, Crisps & Snacks); Chilled (Ready Meals, Fish, Poultry- Fresh & Processed); Delicatessen (Cooked meat, Sandwiches, Sushi, Prepared Salads , caviar ); In Store Hot Food.

Key Skills

Production and Technical Management. Supplier Approval; Retail Audit; Specification management; Food Safety Approval; Food Safety Training; Project Management.

Training

Lead Assessor /BS5750, RSPH Level 4 (Advanced) Food Safety in Manufacturing, CIEH approved trainer; HACCP Intermediate ; BSc Hons Food Science; Microbiology courses; IOSH Risk Management training; retailer Specification Management courses.

Retha (based in South Africa)

Professional Experience

Retha is an Internationally Certified Lead Auditor and has developed & implemented certified Food Safety Management Systems for leading South African Brand Producers. These systems include but are not limited to BRC Global Standards for Food and Packaging, FSSC 22000, IFS and ISO 9001. Retha is a recognised subject matter expert in Product Quality, Food Safety & Risk Assessment methodology specifically in the Packaging & Food Industry.

Sector Specific Expertise

Food: Raw Poultry, Raw fish, cooked meat / fish products, fruits and vegetables, beverages, bakery, dried foods and ingredients, confectionery, cereals and snacks, oils and fats

Packaging: Rigid plastics forming, Flexible plastics forming, print processes

Key Skills

Retha is an Internationally Certified Lead Auditor and an Approved Training Provider (ATP) for the BRCGS where she provides training on the BRC global standards for Packaging. In parallel with the above, Retha developed and delivered both SETA registered and best in class training programmes on product safety and quality, HACCP, GMPs, Root Cause Analysis, Activity Auditing and Process Auditing, obtaining SETA accreditation for her own company in the process and establishing a student / delegate database of over 800 competent practitioners.

Training

Management Development Programme - UNISA Lead Auditor BRC Global Standard - Food & Packaging SAATCA Auditors Examination ISO 9001:2000 Registered Assessor - Food Bev SETA Registered ETDP - Food Bev SETA Approved Training Provider (ATP) for the BRCGS Packaging and Packaging Materials

Richard (based in Spain)

Professional Experience

Richard has more than 30 years of experience working in food. Initially working in the meat industry he progressed though prepared ready meals, prepared snacks and fresh produce. The last 20+ years have been based in Spain and mostly working in agriculture. Roles have included quality management, technical management and technical services management working for companies such as Campbell’s, Golden Wonder, Derbyshire Chilled Foods (now Greencore), & Sainsbury’s. Richard has extensive experience in production, commercial, technical, quality, development, social responsibility & worker welfare, sustainability. He has worked throughout Spain and also Portugal, Egypt, Morocco, Kenya, Greece, Holland and Italy (as well as UK). He has been contracted by major supermarkets, growers, traders, seed companies and laboratories.

Sector Specific Expertise

Fruit and vegetables, prepared foods, snack foods.

Key Skills

Food Safety, HACCP, Global GAP, BRC, Sedex, fluent Spanish.

Training

Food Science, Statistical Process Control, HACCP, Tesco QMS, Waitrose Farm Assessments (including Worker Welfare).

Roberta (based in Brazil)

Professional Experience

Experienced technical manager both in the UK and overseas, responsible for quality, safety and procurement of fresh and prepared produce.

Sector Specific Expertise

Fresh produce experience- especially fruit and vegetables, including prepared produce.

Key Skills

Auditor on Good Agricultural Practices and development of required protocols (GAPs, TPPS, TNC, supplier audits, WRFA, ethical compliance, etc). Capacity planning, pro-activity in realization of projects, organization and learning of different tasks. Experience in relationships with customers / suppliers, focused on export.

Training

Good Agricultural Practices (including Global GAP, TNC), Internal auditor, BSCI and Sedex for Ethical standards, Graduated at Business Management of Foreign Trade, Tesco Food Manufacturing Standard Course, Waitrose Farm Assessment Course.

Yigal (based in Israel)

Professional Experience

Amongst other roles, Yigal worked with Agrexco for 34 years, leading the QA team for 13 years. During this time he was responsible for preparing and guiding growers to ensure they and their packhouses met retailer requirements.

Sector Specific Expertise

Fresh produce, processed products, bakery.

Key Skills

Preparation and guidance for audits to the following standards: Global GAP, BRC, ISO 9001:2008, Nurture, TPPS & TFMS for TESCO, LEAF, Organic growing standards, and ethical standards such as ETI, SEDEX, and FWC; Auditing; Quality Assurance Management; HACCP Certification.

Training

Lead Assessor, Advanced HACCP, Global GAP, Ethical Auditing, M&S Farm Select (Field to Fork v 5) Categories 0, 1 & 2.

Product Expertise

  • Fresh & Prepared Produce
  • Flowers and Pot Plants
  • Chocolate & Confectionery
  • Soft Drinks
  • Tea, Coffee and Hot Chocolate
  • Snacks and Crisps
  • Canned and dry grocery
  • Chilled Ready Meals
  • Dairy Products