For Starbucks, It's in the Bag

Abstract:When voice of the customer data showed that Starbuck's needed to improve packaging of their one-pound coffee, the company explored the process parameters of important packaging quality characteristics. A response surface design was seen as most suited to meeting the dual packaging specifications of an airtight seal and an easy-to-open bag. A three-variable 19-run test design generated results for both a pass-fail assessment of seal and a 0-9 rating for ease of opening. Regression analysis of the data generated a range of parameters that met acceptible levels of vacuum seal and ease of opening, and parameters in the middle of that range were selected. A test run showed all bags were sealed and only five percent showed any tearing, which was within acceptable limits. The design and experimentation process also identified additional factors affecting seal quality. After the new process was adopted companywide, seal levels remained at the benchmark zero percent and tear levels were at less than …

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--Deyanira, 06-11-2014

What a great example of applying the techniques I see in my textbooks. Thank you for sharing this real-life example.
--April R Miller, 04-23-2011

A very good read, especially for a loyal Starbucks customer.
--Zabeel Basheer, 03-30-2011

This is an excellent application of response surface experimentation in an industrial application. I look forward to apply the same technique to my engineering work at Owens-Illinois.
--Nebil Orkan, 03-25-2011

--, 03-08-2011

I found this article to be very interesting, well-written, and generally understood. It appeals because I do buy Starbucks coffee in bags.
--Joseph Howard, 03-07-2011

This is quite possibly THE best article I have read on quality! As a lover of quality and coffee, I couldn't ask for a better read!
--N. Johnson, 03-07-2011

A widely known subject of "how to keep the coffee airtight to retain its flavor" is lucidly explained using statistical models. Excellent.
--S.Kannan, 03-01-2011

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