The Production function deserves some separate discussion for two reasons, or groups of reasons. First, it is by definition the central activity of any manufacturing company. It provides the tangible, measurable output of the company; it is what most of the plant, equipment, and machinery is for. And it is what the majority of those employed by the company are engaged in, even if the relative proportion of direct production workers appears to vary between different countries as was demonstrated in Chapter 2. Production is also the logically central function, even if the temporal sequence of activities may vary. 1 The logical order of operations, that is to say, is that commodities are designed and/or developed, then produced and finally sold and distributed.