Operations Decision



Thefirms that emerge as important competitors in the low-calorie frozen,microwavable food industry, are Lean Cuisine and Healthy Choice(Lundahl, 2012). The two entities have a magnificent history, decentmarket grip, and a well-established customer base. Lean Cuisinebecame incorporated in 1981with a goal of providing a healthieralternative to Stouffer’s frozen meals in the Canada, U.S, as wellas the Australian market. The company commenced with only ten fooditems but has now expanded to more than 100 different meals. Thecredibility of this entity in providing quality products has beenfacilitated by the fact that it is owned by Nestle, which a marketleader globally (Lundahl, 2012). The business is very profitableglobally and uses price differentiation strategy. Alternatively,Healthy Choice is an entity owned by ConAgra Foods as a subsidiary.Just like Lean Cuisine, the organization is well recognized inproviding quality meals emanating from the acknowledgment of ConAgrain the industry. The pricing strategy of Healthy Choice follows thatof ConAgra which focuses on price differentiation. The subsidiary isprofitable and this can be borrowed from the financial performance ofConAgra globally (Lundahl, 2012). The two rivals have become verytriumphant in the industry and relate well with other firms in theindustry.


Theeffectiveness of the market structure for the company’s operationscan be evaluated through first carrying out a study on the targetaudience for the commodities. The needs as well as the demands ofcustomers, in the target market, can be considered as importantfactors that would work towards driving the sales of the business(Mahadevan, 2009). The entity is likely to fail in case it does notgive proper attention to audience analysis. Also, the growth trend ofthe target market should be analyzed. Furthermore, it would becritical to assess the employment and inflation trends. The companywould require providing an emphasis on its price strategy since thiswould be an important factor in the operations.


Importantfactors that led to the change in the market structure would need tobe considered since they can affect the company in the newenvironment. The two factors that can be stressed here are thechanges in customer income and buyer tastes. In case the consumersstart earning more income, they are likely to purchase more andexpensive commodities (Mahadevan, 2009). In such a situation, theacquisition ability would be increased. Alternatively, when thecustomers’ income is not that high, they will decrease the buyingtendency and will obtain less expensive commodities. This would havean impact on the revenues of the company. On the other hand, thetaste of buyers would be critical, but can be controlled by thebusiness. In case customers like a certain product, they are likelyto obtain the commodity even if it is slightly expensive. Thus,their taste has to be tamed by the company since they can influencethe revenues that the organization would make. Through carryingadequate research on the customers’ tastes, the firm would be in aposition to provide commodities in line with the tastes of shoppers,thus controlling its revenues.


Inanalyzing the short and long run cost functions, the calculation oftotal cost, variable cost, average variable cost, as well as theaverage total cost will be required. The equations provided are asfollows

TC= 160,000,000 + 100 Q + 0.0063212 Q2

VC= 100 Q + 0.0063212 Q2

MC= 100 + 0.0126424 Q

Quantitydemanded = Quantity supplied

FromAssignment 1, this can be equated as 26770 – 42 P = -7909.89 +79.0989P

121.1P= 34679.89

EquilibriumP = 286.37 (as derived from assignment 1)

Substitutingthe value of P Q = -7909.89 + 79.1(286.37)

Q= 14741.98 (as derived from assignment 1)

Therefore,VC = 100 Q + 0.0063212 Q2

=100 (14741.98) + 0.0063212 (14741.98)2

1474198+ 1373760.95

VC= 2847958.95

AVC= 2847958.95/14741.98


MC= 100 + 0.0126424 Q

=100 + 0.0126424 (14741.98)

=100 + 186.37

MC= 286.37

TC= 160,000,000 + 100 Q + 0.0063212 Q2

=160,000,000 + 100 (14741.98) + 0.0063212 (14741.98)2

=160,000,000 + 1474198 + 1373760.95

TC= 162847958.95


ATC= 162847958.95 / 14741.98


Shortrun equilibrium

Longrun equilibrium

Inthe cases above, the company will use the equilibrium price andquantity in establishing whether the price would be optimum or not.Therefore, the firm can use this information in adjusting itsequilibrium points in case there is a change in other factors. Whenit realizes that the price is not most favorable, it can take thenecessary steps to change it. For instance, the firm can mitigate thefee of its commodities so as to make customers buy more of themerchandise. Indeed, the company can project to increase its sales ifit sets prices craftily (Hinterhuber &amp Liozu, 2013). Therefore,the organization can utilize the information to its advantage in theshort and long run.


Differentaspects can make the company discontinue its operations. One of thefactors may be due to the commodities being produced becomingobsolete or losing their appeal to the consumers. For instance, theremay be a case where the products of the company may not attractbuyers even at a cheaper rate. This may be due to an emergence ofrival commodities that go along with customers’ tastes, which maybe provided at a lower price compared to the existing product. Insuch a scenario, the solution would be to conduct sufficient researchso as to establish whether the equipment used in producing thecommodity, whose products are being discontinued, can be utilized ingenerating other goods that can be sold by the company. In case, theequipment is also not relevant in the manufacture of othercommodities then it is advisable to discontinue the operations ofthe firm. Also, another circumstance that may prompt the firm toclose undertakings is an increase in cost leading to continuouslosses. The organization may come across a situation where the costsof production are on the increase, but prices cannot be increased dueto the rivalry in the market. In this case, the organization may beforced to shut down its functions emanating from a prolonged time oflosses. The firm may fight this problem by changing its productiontactics so as to remain aggressive in the market. For example, theentity may decrease the size of its products so as to reflect adecrease in price, but ensure that it would benefit from the ratethat it attaches to its new commodities (Hinterhuber &amp Liozu,2013).


Fromassignment 1, the demand equation was Q = 26770 – 42 P this can berewritten as

42P = 26770 – Q

P= 637.38 – Q

Fromthis equation, then the TR equation would be obtained by P*Q to getthe following

TR= PQ = 637.38 Q – Q2

MR= 637.38 – 2Q

MC= 100 + 0.0126424 Q

Toget the optimal price MC should be equated to MR

Thiswould give 637.38 – 2Q = 100 + 0.0126424 Q

537.38= 2.0126424 Q

Q= 267

But,P = 637.38 – Q

P= 637.38 – 267

P= 370.38

Optimalprice that would maximize profits is $ 370.38

Comparingthis optimal price with the one obtained in assignment 1 (286.37),the profit maximizing price is higher. The company can consider usingthe pricing policy, where it would utilize elasticity of demand forits commodities. When using this criterion to set its prices, itwould be capable of changing the price based on the elasticity of theproducts that it produces. Through the policy, the company would bein a position to adjust prices at its advantage.


Thecompany can use different key performance indicators to assess itsposition in business. In the case of the business underconsideration, the data available can only be used to evaluate theprofitability of the firm since the cost and revenue function arepresent as well as the optimal values of price and quantity. Theprofitability of the organization can influence managerial decisionsince the managers can use the information in evaluating thestrategies they can utilize in enhancing the prosperity of theentity. The use of productivity measure can be a valid assumption ofthe ability of the company to continue its operations since profitfigures are critical in determining whether the expectations of theorganization are met.

Profitin the short run

Profit= TR – TC

TR= PQ = 637.38 Q – Q2

TC= 100 Q + 0.0126424 Q2

Profit= 637.38 Q – Q2– 100 Q – 0.0126424 Q2

=537.38 Q – 1.0126424 Q2

=537.38 (267) – 1.0126424 (267)2

=143480.46 – 72190.26

Profitin the short run = $71290.2

Profitin the Long run

MC= 286.37

MR= 637.38 – 2Q

=637.38 – 2(267)

MR= 103.38

Marginalloss = 103.38 – 286.37


Therefore,in the long run, the company would make a loss of 182.99 (267) =48858.33


Thecompany may consider taking different actions to improve itsprofitability in an attempt to enhance the value to its stakeholders.One of the actions would entail implementing pricing strategies thatfocus on the incomes of the consumers (Fifer, 2011). This impliesthat customers would be in a position to buy the commoditiesregardless of their income levels. Another action concerns upgradingthe quality of the company’s products continuously this would makethe goods reliable and appealing to the customers (Fifer, 2011).Continuous upgrading of the goods would also give the firm an upperhand in the market. Another important action that would help thecompany in improving its profitability is focusing on advertisements.Effective advertisement would help people to know about the productsof the company and persuade them to purchase (Daly, 2002). Thus, thisaction would aid in enhancing the sales and proceeds of the company.

Inconclusion, examples of two firms that operate in the low-caloriefood industry are Lean Cuisine and Healthy Choice. The two entitieshave a magnificent history, decent market grip, and awell-established customer base. The factors that resulted to changein the market structure would need to be considered since they canaffect the company in the new environment. The two factors that canbe stressed in the case of the company are the changes in customerincome and buyer tastes. In case the consumers start earning moreincome, they are likely to purchase more and expensive commodities.In such a situation, the acquisition ability would be increased.Alternatively, when the customers’ income is not that high, theywill decrease the buying tendency and will obtain less expensivecommodities. Different aspects can make the company discontinue itsoperations. One of the factors may be due to the commodities beingproduced becoming obsolete or losing their appeal to the consumers.The business may consider taking different actions to improve itsprofitability in an attempt to enhance the value to its stakeholders.One of the actions would entail implementing pricing strategies thatfocus on the incomes of the consumers. This implies that customerswould be in a position to buy the commodities regardless of theirincome levels. Another action concerns upgrading the quality of thecompany’s products continuously this would make the goods reliableand appealing to the customers. Continuous upgrading of the goodswould also give the firm an upper hand in the market. Anotherimportant action that would help the company in improving itsprofitability is focusing on advertisements.


Daly,J. L. (2002). Pricingfor profitability: Activity-based pricing for competitive advantage.New York: Wiley.

Fifer,R. M. (2011). Doubleyour profits in 6 months or less.New York: HarperBusiness.

Hinterhuber,A., &amp Liozu, S. (2013). Innovationin pricing: Contemporary theories and best practices.London: Routledge.

Lundahl,D. S. (2012). Breakthroughfood production innovation through emotions research.London: Elsevier/Academic Press.

Mahadevan,B. (2009). Operationsmanagement: Theory and practice.New Delhi: Published by Dorling Kindersley (India.