Recipe management systems and their challenges for manufacturers

Following on from our manufacturing data management blog, we now delve a little deeper into our bill of material (BOM) and master recipe SAP solution extension for a recipe management system. Maextro was born out of previous FMCG and chemical industry lead engagements. Watch the video to see this solution in action! 


What is recipe data management?

A recipe management system is a software application that manages, stores, and regulates data processes of the production recipes for manufacturing in a food and beverage company. It provides a database in which recipes can be held, modified for improvement, and generate reports for manufacturing logs. It provides manufacturers with a standardised way to launch, manufacture and regulate their products.


Why is recipe management important?

There are many reasons why recipe management is essential for food and beverage manufacturers. With increasing market demand and expectations from consumers, it is an effective way to standardise production and keep operations cost-effective. Here are a few reasons in a little more detail:

beer production in factory

Standardise production

Recipe management systems enable a manufacturer to standardise production. When producing food manually, it’s easy to get quantities slightly off, which can cause differentiations in the final product. It’s important to keep recipes consistent to A) keep productions cost-effective B) deliver on customer expectations. Recipe management systems make this easy by automating production and introducing strict compliance around recipe quantities. This creates a standardised production system to ensure that the final products are correct and uniform every time.



When production is automated, it means programming exact quantities and maintaining consistency across recipe production becomes standardised. In turn, this makes calculating exact costs simple and accurate. This helps a manufacturer to optimise recipes so that they can be the best quality and flavour whilst being economical. When costs are cut, margins improve, which is essential in a competitive and uncertain market.


Sweat your assets

When a manufacturer can calculate the amount of time it takes to produce a product, it can optimise the process and keep it going for longer periods of time, making greater use of machinery, workforce and raw ingredients.

coffee machine maker

Match demand

As trends and tastes change, so do demands for products- like with the rise of vegan and gluten-free foods. When recipe manufacturing is optimised, it creates breathing room for manufacturers to develop new individual products and gives them the agility to bring them to market at pace. A recipe management system can quickly draw up data on ingredients, allergens, nutrition and GMO. Verifying components of a recipe quickly and accurately enables them to be produced effectively in smaller batches and to be adjusted when production needs to flex.


Manage consumer expectations

Better data management creates better control over the input of the product. This lets manufacturers better serve their customer’s expectations across all sensory experiences. Furthermore, when it comes to being transparent with customers regarding nutrition and allergy information, recipe management systems make this accurate and easy as the information is readily available.


Improved compliance

Greater control over production makes compliance with legislation and regulation simple through inbuilt compliance and governance. Logging and monitoring data also becomes simplified through software reporting capabilities. This creates greater confidence in the workforce, enabling faster quality checks and more time spent on production.

food factory workforce

Reduce risks

A recipe management system also doubles as a risk management system. When compliance and governance is built in, the production workforce has to follow the guidelines exactly as specified. This improves health and safety around production as well as helps compliance with legislation and regulations. It mitigates the need for product recalls, which can be financially costly as well as costly on brand image.


It also creates a way to document and log each batch for monitoring and evidential reasons. This helps a manufacturer to accurately demonstrate compliance and safety when required.



Master recipe compliance? There’s a Maextro solution for that.


With an ever-growing need for speed, personalisation and compliance, process-based industries are faced with many key challenges in developing, managing, and distributing master data associated with the overall manufacturing of a product. While the aforementioned inevitably leads to a certain degree of upstream product development complexity, it is paramount that recipe developers, quality management, production and formulation team members downstream can collaborate easily and efficiently when transitioning this information over to the SAP ERP production planning module.

food production silos

Key challenges for recipe data management in SAP ERP


  • Handover to manufacturing is often a time-intensive, manual process that often requires extensive collaboration, rework and product development interpretation across business disciplines.


  • Product compliance checks are not automated or integrated with the wider SAP solution portfolio.


  • Ability to collaborate both within and across disciplines is overly reliant on offline manual workflow and communication interventions.


  • Processes are often fragmented and inconsistent, causing inefficiencies and delays to production ramp-up/launch at the desired manufacturing plant.


  • Scrappage, run rate changes, yields, sampling requirements and phase-in/out component updates to recipes are not effectively reported upon or captured for the optimisation of recipe master data from production runs.


Examples of how Maextro can help recipe management systems.


  • Adoption of Maextro solution accelerators based primarily on SAP std. PP-PI data models and industry proven workflow practices can provide a simple initial framework for benchmarking or launching a data-driven initiative towards improving overall manufacturing data management practices for SAP ERP.


  • Simple workflow accelerators provide an opportunity for collaboration and a system first four-eyes approach towards recipe data management. Such measures could ensure that production is full aligned with both product compliance and specification parameters prior to raw material procurement proposals being generated by MRP.


  • PLM and Maextro MDM can work together seamlessly, providing a unified approach to taking new products to market. Early integration with downstream manufacturing processes increases efficiency throughout the entire design to manufacture value- chain.


  • Multi-Domain capabilities allow Maextro MDM workflows for ERP data objects to be started either manually or from a PLM/MDG system-based integration scenario. Data integral to manufacturing remains as a single version of truth in the ERP system with the respective local (plant) data owners.


  • Links and dependencies with secondary data objects such as materials and manufacturing bills of materials can be made to ensure synchronisation of data updates.


  • Extensions into SAP QM data management mean production data collation task actions can co-ordinated side-by-side with the respective inspection plan update(s) that need to be performed.


  • Extensions into SAP CO data management mean costing relevant data collation task actions can co-ordinated side-by-side with the respective cost object updates that need to be performed.


Get a demo of Maextro for your organisation.

If you would like to know more about how Maextro’s automation and governance capabilities can assist with your recipe management system, get in touch. We understand that every manufacturer has different needs and we cater to that. Get a demo of Maextro here to talk to a manufacturing data expert. It’s a recipe for success.


If you would like to read more about Maextro’s MDG capabilities, you might like to read our other blog on how to make MDG simpler using Maextro.

If you would like to discover more about Maextro for manufacturing, check out our webinar on demystifying data management with Maextro here!