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Ovoschi Chernozemya greenhouse complex continues to participate in the “Labor Productivity” national project

The “National Projects of the Russian Federation” website published an analytical article reviewing and rating the best Russian regions to participate in the “Labor Productivity” national project. It features a detailed report on the country’s leading areas to work with maximum efficiency and the companies worth looking up to in order to achieve similar performance indicators. One of the most successful projects to increase labor productivity is the representative of ECO-Culture agro-industrial complex, namely Ovoschi Chernozemya greenhouse complex located in Lipetsk Oblast. The authors of the article talked to the enterprise’s CEO and found out what efficiency enhancement tools have been implemented at the production facility.

Lipetsk Oblast ranks among the top 10 ratings of the Russian Ministry of Economic Development and the Federal Competence Center (FCC). Not surprisingly, this year’s results show that the company from this particular region was the leader in production growth.

Ovoschi Chernozemya complex is one of the biggest production facilities of ECO-Culture agro-industrial holding, a major indoor vegetable producer. In 2021, the FCC representatives helped the enterprise optimize the complex’s distribution center, where the harvested tomatoes are prepared for further distribution to retail chains. Over that six-month period, specialists restarted the process and fundamentally changed the production culture.

With lean production tools introduced, employees began to take a more systematic approach to mastering new knowledge and skills. According to Sergey Stolyarov, the facility’s CEO, it was a real breakthrough.

The FCC, however, does not limit itself to passing on theoretical knowledge and methodological recommendations. Working directly at production sites, its specialists initiate and control the work of employees to introduce improvements and elaborate on-site changes to processes to reduce labor and time costs. In the meantime, personnel gets a clear understanding of exactly how the current labor structure needs to be corrected, changed, or reconfigured.

For a visual demonstration, the working group made a workflow map and Spaghetti diagram, which shows all movements of people and products and immediately indicates the exact time- and performance-decreasing segments. Further digitization of the results revealed all unnecessary and inefficient activities. Later on, the losses were eliminated by installing additional equipment, resulting in a doubling of productivity in the segment.

With time costs being reduced, the amount of so-called “insignificant” work has decreased, too.

Sergey Stolyarov emphasized that the impetus received during the cooperation with the FCC will help the enterprise to move further towards an increase in production efficiency. After all, these achievements make it impossible for the company to stop. Instead, the process of working process improvement should be continued and become a regular practice. In 2022, a joint team of Ovoschi Chernozemya and FCC is to be implementing a new project – tomato harvesting and delivery to the distribution center. The main goal is to increase the vegetable growers’ labor productivity while boosting each worker’s production output.

The authors further touch upon examples of the implementation of the “Labor Productivity” national project in other Russian companies. The full text of the article is available on the national project’s official website.