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How Digital Technology Improves the Efficiency of Food and Beverage Manufacturing Plants

Food and Beverages | Friday, June 18, 2021

The food and beverage industry is undergoing rapid change due to manufacturers’ increasing use of new technologies. Food and beverage manufacturers face many opportunities and challenges due to digital technologies and the rise of Industry 4.0.

FREMONT, CA: Food industry undergoes digital transformation. More and more companies use technology to collect more data about their facilities, from large corporations to smaller, more agile brands. The fundamental of the Digital Revolution is data. Manufacturers employ smart sensors to collect real-time data on how their equipment works, how much and more energy they use. These smart sensors send this data to an IT system that analyses and combines it with historical data. These explorations provide valuable insights into operations from overall equipment efficiency (OEE) to energy data management. All this information is uploaded to the cloud to access it from anywhere, making improvements easier. Digital technology reconceptualizes food and beverage manufacturing in many ways. Some benefits are as follows.

Improved food and beverage quality

Top 10 Food and Beverages Tech Consulting/Service Companies in Europe - 2020To suit consumers, products in the food and beverage industry must meet high-quality standards and regulations. Food and beverage producers must monitor their processes strictly. Digital technology can also help quality assurance and improve food and beverage products’ overall quality. Quality assurance demands data. With digital technology, food manufacturers can track all kinds of data about their production process. This allows them to detect process variations that can lead to real-time quality problems and correct them, saving considerable time and money quickly. This is especially important in batch production, where products are produced in groups, not one by one. Advanced solutions can also allow them to quickly and accurately record and replay processes for troubleshooting errors. This can help prevent future reoccurrence of the problem. Food producers can also use data and data analysis techniques to improve the quality of their products and maintain the precise process control needed to meet quality standards.

Minimized energy use

Reducing a manufacturing plant's energy consumption reduces costs and also helps reduce environmental impact, which could even improve the company's reputation. This can lead to increased sales and investment, as well as more customer and employee loyalty. Tracking energy data may reveal that specific processes or pieces of equipment are excessively energy-intensive. It can also show unexpected spikes in energy use, typically indicating a problem like a malfunctioning machine piece.

Integrated functionality and asset management

Food and drink products can be a complicated process involving different equipment, people and tasks. A more comprehensive view of this process is helpful. Digital technology can help this comprehensive view by connecting the various systems and collecting all data in one place. In addition, digital technology allows food producers to control and alter processes without having to go to physical machinery. With a centralized system, they can see all relevant data from anywhere and adjust remotely. This integration can also improve asset management and increase overall equipment efficiency. 

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