Niranjan Kulkarni, PhD to Present at the Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference (ISERC)

Niranjan Kulkarni, PhD to Present at the Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference (ISERC)

May 28, 2014

Philadelphia, PA

‘Improving Efficiency of Downstream Operations in the Nutraceutical Industry’ by Niranjan Kulkarni, PhD, will be published in the proceedings of the Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference (ISERC).  Dr. Kulkarni will also present his paper on June 2 during the conference at the Palais des Congrés de Montréal in Canada.

The abstract of the paper reads:

Nutraceuticals can be broadly defined as foods providing medical or health benefits. This industry can be characterized as high volume, high mix environment. The overall manufacturing process can be split into upstream and downstream functions.The upstream functions generally include weighing, dispensing and processing operations. While downstream activities usually comprise of primary packaging operations, and in some instances may also include secondary packaging. With the exception of weighing, the upstream functions, particularly, processing operations are highly automated and do not vary significantly. However, there exists significant amount of variability in the downstream operations. This variability can be attributed to factors such as, different container (bottle or can) sizes, labeling requirements, package configuration, pallet sizes, manual intervention, and constraints imposed by regulatory bodies, to name a few. All these factors impact the efficiency of packaging lines. Even though nutraceutical products enjoy high profit margins, inefficient operations which necessitate increased headcount and facility footprint have a considerable negative impact on overall profitability. This paper presents a case study to demonstrate how modeling and simulation techniques, in conjunction with industrial engineering practices, can reduce variability, headcount and footprint in downstream activities and enhance operational efficiency.


In addition to his presentation, Dr. Kulkarni will serve as session chair for session titled ‘Operations and Systems Improvement in Process Industry.’ He is also an invited panelist for the Student Career Development Panel Session. 

To learn more about the conference, visit