Bühler showcases digital systems with Microsoft at Hannover Messe

Swiss-headquartered food solutions and equipment  group, Bühler, has been invited for the second year running to share Microsoft’s booth at Hannover Messe technology event between 1-5 April.

The company Bühler will showcase digital solutions developed in collaboration with the tech giant that address some of the most pressing challenges facing the global food chain – including key matters affecting confectionery and bakery markets.

Food contamination, malnutrition, and hunger are problems still faced by millions of people around the world. As climate change accelerates and the global population continues to grow, the need for sustainable solutions along the food value chain is increasing. Ensuring that every human has access to safe, affordable and healthy food is essential.

Bühler and Microsoft are working together to make food value chains more sustainable by creating solutions that improve safety and transparency, reduce waste, and increase energy efficiency and yields. Building on Microsoft’s technologies, including Azure and Azure Blockchain, Bühler has developed process technologies, machines, solutions, and services to address these challenges. Bühler is proud to showcase a selection of these new solutions at the Microsoft booth at Hannover Messe.

“Two billion people a day enjoy food produced on our machines. Our goal is to secure safe food while reducing 30% of waste and 30% of energy in these processes by 2020. Our collaboration with Microsoft has opened up massive opportunities to achieve these goals while delivering outstanding solutions to our customers,” said Stuart Bashford, Digital Officer at Bühler Group.

“Food safety and transparency across the value chain are global challenges that require new levels of collaboration. Combining our leadership in food processing with Microsoft Azure, we have developed Bühler Insights, the first cloud platform dedicated to the food industry. The platform enables secure, high-performance, reliable digital services that, together with blockchain technologies, can achieve significant progress in improving safety, quality, efficiency, and traceability across food production value chains. Today, over 85 % of our solutions can be connected to the Bühler Insights platform.”

Of the collaboration with Bühler, Çağlayan Arkan, Global Lead, Manufacturing & Resources Industry at Microsoft said: “Microsoft offers a highly secure, global and scalable cloud infrastructure alongside innovative technologies for connected services and connected factories. By choosing to partner and empower, we share our expertise as a technology leader, as well as insights from our own transformation. This way, our customers and partners can focus on developing solutions for the specific needs of their industries and their customers.”

The following solutions, all of which are connected to the Bühler Insights platform, will be showcased at the Microsoft stand at Hannover Messe this year:

Laatu is a breakthrough technology for reducing microbial contamination in dry goods. Low-energy electrons destroy 99.999% of Salmonella while using up to 80% less energy compared to conventional microbial elimination technologies. Connected to Bühler Insights, it captures processing parameters, dates, times, and product batches in real-time, making it a powerful tool in food safety auditing.

Tubex Pro is a smart, self-optimizing, scale system for the food industry that provides a constant flow of real-time production data, which can be visualized using Bühler Insights. It enables improvements in efficiency and yield and provides a new level of transparency and traceability along the value chain. The data can also be seamlessly integrated into Bühler’s Yield Management System.

Yield Management System is a mobile yield monitoring system that provides remote oversight of production data across plants, making deviations between recipes immediately visible and comparable, enabling food producers to react quickly to maintain a constantly high yield. The first digital recipe-based yield management solution on the market, it works together with Tubex Pro via the Bühler Insights platform to increase production efficiencies and yield.

Mill E3 is an innovative mill concept that brings all these solutions together. Mill E3 improves efficiency in three key areas: space, time and energy. The new mill can be built in less time, in a smaller building, at the same or lower costs, and consumes significantly less energy per ton of processed wheat than a conventional mill. Increased automation along with sensors feeding data to the Bühler Insights platform enable the miller to maintain yield and guarantee end product quality. The use of blockchain technology provides traceability of the product from the farm to flour. Mill E3 is energy efficient, self-optimising, and provides a safe and trustworthy grain value chain. The first Mill E3 is being developed for Whitworth Bros, a UK leading wheat miller in the UK.

“As global challenges become more acute, there is an increasing need for sustainable solutions along the whole food value chain. Our Mill E3 project for Whitworth demonstrates what can be achieved when we combine Bühler’s world-leading processing knowledge with Microsoft’s technology,” said Johannes Wick, CEO Grains & Food at Bühler Group. “Through Bühler Insights and blockchain we can cut unnecessary costs and carbon emissions, improve food safety, and ensure quality of the end product.”

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