Dairy Industry: DSM happy with HAI Golden Batch software
Hunting for the Golden Batch with software from HAI and GEA
Foeke van der Bij, Senior Process Technologist at CSK (now part of DSM)
Food Ingredients producer CSK in The Netherlands successfully implemented the HAI Golden Batch software. During production, operators can now monitor if the measurements of the current batch correspond with those of the Golden Batch. This helps them to timely respond to any batch quality deviation.Technologists use the Golden Batch as a benchmark in their analyses and reports.
The benefits? Efficiënt production of the required quality within a specified amount of time, says Foeke van der Bij, Senior Process technologist at CSK. With the HAI software the hunt for the Golden Batch is now open: for technologists and operators.
The hightech-factory of Royal CSK in Leeuwarden (part of Royal DSM) produces starter cultures for the dairy industry. A bio-technological process where special cultures are produced in big tanks. These starter cultures are natural bacteria that create taste in for instance cheese, quark and yoghurt.
Foeke van der Bij, Senior Process technologist at CSK (part of DSM)
Each production batch is unique, but our aim is to achieve the desired quality time and again
“The challenge is”, Foeke explains, “to discover the optimal conditions for these processes, in order to produce the best quality in the shortest possible time. That is not a mean feat considering that bio-technological processes by definition can never be repeated for 100%. So, each batch is unique, and still we aim to achieve the desired quality within the expected time. If we manage to do so, we call this a Golden Batch.
Compare current batch in real-time with the Golden Batch
For operators it is important to monitor during the production processs if the batch develops in accordance with the Golden Batch. Take for example the pH measurements that are shown in a curve. If you see the pH curve of the current batch plotted against the pH curve of the Golden Batch, then its plain to see if the current batch develops well. Should the current curve correspond insufficiently to that of the Golden Batch, the operator will involve the colleagues from Technology and Quality. As a team they will decide which corrective action is appropriate, or in the worst case even to abort production of the batch. If a batch needs to be aborted, than at least the lost production time is limited.
Reproducibility and predictable performance
The duration of the fermentation process can vary significantly per batch. This is caused mainly by a great variation in culture types and their respective fermentation recipees.
“We try to keep the fermentation period as consistent as possible within a group of intermediates (combination of culture/recipee). After all, the reproducibility in our process is the basis of the reproducibility of the product. And this is very important for our customers: the starter culture must perform as expected, so their production planning will be reliable.
Therfore, our team of process technologists is very interested in mapping those differences”, explains Foeke. “And to find the causes of those differences. That’s why we make analyses pointing to the differences in batch-duration. Then we try to explain those differences and think of ways to prevent it from happening again”.
One central database makes data analytics much easier and more efficient
The CSK factory and the process control software has been realized by GEA, technology supplier for a.o. the Food Industry. GEA co-operated with HAI to connect the factory data to the central HAI database. The HAI software shows if the values are within specifications, and it generates all (Golden Batch) reports, including trending and analytics. In the HAI Software, the Golden Batch is identified and visualized on the HMI screens for operators in production.
Data from SAP en LIMS (quality)
Next step is to include data on raw materials from SAP and end-product quality from LIMS in the central HAI database. Foeke: “This will enable us to include raw materials used and data about end-product quality in the reporting and analytics we have in the HAI software. We used to retrieve these data from various sources, which takes a lot of time and effort. By eliminating this database-barrier, our data analytics activities will become more efficient and done more frequently. This will no doubt help us to better understand how we can produce even smarter.”
Well, sure they are happy with the Golden Batch software from HAI….
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