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A wise man once said "You can't choose your family, but you can choose your friends." What is less well known is that he went on to say "…and you can also choose your suppliers" and should do so based upon the rigorous criteria laid out in this article. The 'approval criteria' New suppliers should be able to prove that they are: technically sound managerially competent adequately resourced financially stable reliable. To assess the above, the following checks may need to be made… Technical competence A technical expert should be taken on visits to assess the following areas: technical background,