With industry 4.0 toward smart factories
During the International Sweets Business Forum hosted by Sweets Global Network, CSB-System vice president Dr Klemens van Betteray discussed future location decisions and proposed actions for the sweets industry.
During its International Sweets Business Forum in Berlin, the international confectionery association Sweets Global Network staged a workshop surrounding the hot topic of ”Industry 4.0”. Welcoming more than 500 participants, the event saw the attendance of numerous representatives from the supplier sector, alongside various sweets manufacturers and retailers.
In the revealing workshop, which took place in addition to the normal congress programme, Dr Klemens van Betteray, vice president for Geilenkirchen-based software company CSB-System AG, gave an account of the current situation in the foods industry in general and the sweets sector in particular.
Absence of downtimes means less energy ependiture
In this day and age, ERP software is key when it comes to the successful streamlining of the process industry. But, as the IT expert stressed in his talk entitled ”Quo vadis? Industry 4.0 in the sweets industry – location decision and suggestions for action”, a great many businesses are still only beginning to informatise their manufacturing technology or get into big data, traceability, merchandise managing systems and such.
Following industrialisation stage 1.0, i. e. mechanisation, electrification (2.0) and automation (3.0), the next step is going to be digitalisation, networking and integrated process management. According to van Betteray, digital manufacturing initiatives are pushing the development toward the smart factory in the global competition because, while plants are being managed still centrally today, the future will belong to smart production systems involving self-organising machines, components and products. Vertical integration will encompass the whole value creation chain from farmers to end customers. What‘s key here is optimised quality, flexibility, speed and creation of value. Should the networked production scenario become reality one day, it may help to give another immense boost to business productivity, according to experts the world over.
Moreover, machines always running at optimum utilisation and the absence of downtimes and standstill means there will be less energy expenditure. The same is true for material consumption, since there will be fewer rejects. Information technology is going to play a critical role here. Using the meat industry as an example, van Betteray showed that complex processes benefit the most from an integrated planning approach that melds ERP systems and the Internet with the cyber-physical sphere of production.
Established in 1977 as a counselling company by the former master butcher Dr Peter Schimitzek and his brother Karl-Heinz, Geilenkirchen, Germany-based CSB-System AG stands today as one of the sector‘s leading specialists for process industries including the foodstuff, beverages, chemistry, pharmaceutics and cosmetics, and also for the retail sector. The company group provides a full suite of software and hardware products, services and business consulting to streamline client business processes and guarantees a vital competitive edge with the CSB all-in-one solution. •