Kerry Group increases savings

Kerry Group, a world leader in the food and beverage industry has achieved huge energy and carbon reductions thanks to a new approach to control and monitoring based on Resource Data Management (RDM) systems.

The initial programme at Kerry was driven by the requirements of due diligence and quality control. The company was keen to ensure full regulatory compliance and that products were prepared to the highest standards. Once this issue had been addressed, energy efficiency and plant performance optimisation became the next priorities.

The initial solution to the due diligence issue was based on RDM’s Data Manager. This enables temperature data to be collected, stored and analysed, with access for Kerry personnel across the site via a Virtual Private Network (VPN). Kerry was delighted with the ease of use of the new RDM platform, which allows access from any desk-top pc across the facility and was keen to roll out the approach across the plant – to encompass not just stored produce but to monitor foodstuffs as they passed through the various stages of processing.

An additional 180 temperature probes – including both air and in-product types – were installed throughout the plant and linked into the RDM Data Manager. This made it possible to track and record the complete journey of foodstuffs through the plant, from delivery to despatch, with collected data being archived for future reference to prove product quality and due diligence.

It was identified that some energy-intensive areas of the plant continued to operate even when the plant was not in production. The contractor proposed harnessing RDM’s Data Manager to improve monitoring and control of energy. The concept was enthusiastically received by Lee Selwood, Kerry’s site maintenance facilitator at Hyde, with responsibility for energy efficiency.

Lee Selwood said: “It showed where energy was being wasted, and enabled us to actively manage plant to minimise power use while optimising productivity. The RDM system gave us complete transparency, so that we could make changes and immediately monitor the effects on the ground.”

To bring everything together, all monitoring functions were finally routed through the second Data Manager, enabling full integration of temperature and energy consumption data streams. These measures resulted in significant savings in energy, saving the company several hundred pounds each week in power costs. Payback on the investment was less than two years.

The overall result of the programme will be an anticipated 10% saving in energy costs for the plant. This is even more impressive given that, during this time, productivity at the plant has been significantly increased. The net effect will be a six figure saving each year in the plant’s energy costs.

In addition to achieving its initial objective in relation to due diligence and regulatory compliance, the company now has the tools to actively manage and optimise all main plant and processes. The system has given the company full control of the plant, and total transparency about how it is performing.

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