Lessons Learned in 2020
As we come to the end of 2020, there is much we want to leave in the dust, but there are also lessons learned that will inform 2021 and the years ahead. In this spirit, we offer you our key lessons of 2020:
Lesson One: The US Cane Sugar Refiners are critical to the continuous operation of many sectors of US Food Manufacturing. Early in the year, with the simultaneous reduction in the US supply of beet and cane sugar due to stresses caused by weather, US cane refineries such as Sugaright stepped in to fill the gap. Going forward, the lessons were clear. Policy decisions of the US government must ensure that accommodations to special interests do not risk the economic security of this necessary sector of food manufacturing.
Lesson Two: A Deep and Sustainable Supply Chain Matters. Due to the unique ability of CSC Trading to source raw cane sugar from around the world, Sugaright made sure our customers, old and new, were never short of refined sugar to keep their plants running. We added new mills to our list of suppliers and continue to actively support certification schemes to ensure our raw sugar has been sourced sustainably.
Lesson Three: The Health and Safety of our employees took center stage. When COVID first struck the US meat packing industry risking both the health and safety of the employees and putting the supply of meat for the US consumer at risk, Sugaright immediately convened a COVID Steering Committee to keep track of constantly changing public health guidance and to keep the plant managers informed of new protocols. Our goals were simple: keep our employees healthy and the plants operational.
Lesson Four: Front-line Employees are Heroes. While many of us had the privilege of working remotely due to the nature of our work, the men and women who operate our refineries came to work and got the job done. Our gratitude extends to the truckers, our suppliers and our other partners who are critical to continuous operation.
Lesson Five: Our customers were awesome! As demand shifted from food eaten out of the home to food eaten in the home, it was impressive to watch how rapidly our customers adapted their production to keep the grocery stores full with products most in demand.
Lesson Six: The responsible consumption of indulgent sweets softened the challenges of lockdown as schools closed and workers went remote. Yum!
Lesson Seven: Change is the only constant. The year 2020 was nothing but disruptive. Companies, families, and individuals had no choice but to reevaluate values and practices. Sugaright prides itself on being innovative and responsive to these challenges and was well prepared to react to uncertainty.
It has been said many times this year to “never waste a crisis.” So it is with great anticipation that we expect 2021 will be a year of renewal and rejuvenation as we move toward a new normal that, informed by the lessons of 2020, is better than the old one.