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Processing, operations and preservation - Member Interest Group

Scope

Technical, regulatory and scientific issues related to primary production, primary processing, storage and distribution. With specific reference to the supply of safe, legal and quality products that meet the needs of the food and feed chain, in a way that is both sustainable and commercially viable.


Purpose

  • To provide a forum for information exchange and discussion relating to issues, trends and knowledge gaps within primary production processes and technologies
  • To foster an understanding of what is new in agriculture and the food industry and how this relates to the production and supply of food raw materials
  • To provide guidance to Campden BRI and others on priority areas in primary production processes and technologies needing further study or elucidation
  • To propose ideas for, shape, review and mentor Campden BRI projects relevant to primary products as food raw materials

Areas of interest

Preservation and processes / technologies:

  • Preservatives and preservation techniques for extending shelf–life – new developments, refining existing approaches, ‘natural’ approaches
  • Addressing the impact of product reformulation on preservation / safety
  • Process innovation, new / emerging technologies and technology integration
  • Process validation, verification and consistency
  • ‘Mild technologies’ (e.g. mild pasteurisation)
  • Specific processes, preservation technologies and other operations, for example:
    • Heat preservation / canning / pasteurisation
    • Aseptic processing and packing
    • Chilling / super–chilling
    • Freezing
    • High pressure processing
    • Novel cooling systems
    • Modified atmosphere packaging
    • Cutting, conveying, packing, palletising
  • Monitoring and control of processes (e.g. sensors)
  • Scale–up – challenges and best practice
  • Foreign body detection – optimising existing technologies; new approaches
  • Intelligent and active packaging

Factories and equipment:

  • Material flow from ingredient intake and handling to product despatch – and all that happens to it in between
  • Design and layout of factories / premises
  • Equipment design – hygiene, cleanability, contamination prevention
  • Pest control technologies
  • Scheduling and optimisation of operations
  • Equipment capability
  • Data capture – speed, retrieval, traceability, time, security
  • Health and safety operations relevant to food manufacturing operations

Hygiene:

  • Hygienic design of premises, production areas and equipment
  • Hygienic practices – cleanability, cleaning, personnel – and their validation
  • New approaches to cleaning (e.g. chemical, non–chemical, biological (e.g. phage))
  • Tailoring to product, process and equipment

Systems:

  • Automation and robotics
  • Sensors
  • Modelling and simulation
  • Internet of things, digital supply chain, data flow and capture
  • Artificial intelligence (e.g. centralised knowledge systems for traceability, supply chain information)
  • Virtual factory / smart factory

Resource utilisation / sustainability:

  • Process modification / adaptation for great efficiencies
  • Waste reduction (e.g. through preservation, new processes, extended shelf–life)
  • By-product utilisation
  • Energy efficiency
  • Effluent management
  • Lean manufacturing

Supply chain aspects:

  • Packing, shipping and distribution
  • Supply chain resilience (e.g. safety assurance, food fraud)

Safety:

  • Food safety standards – especially their practical impact on manufacturing operations and standardisation
  • Risk assessment processes and procedures

Quality:

  • Ingredient and product handling
  • Real–time quality control / monitoring / analysis (e.g. flavour, food fraud)
  • Technologies and techniques for enhancing quality
  • Managing quality in the context of commercial pressures

Skills and knowledge:

  • Sharing of knowledge, data and intelligence within industry (food manufacturers, retailers, equipment suppliers, Campden BRI, third parties)
  • Sharing of best practice
  • Case studies of successful practical implementation of new technologies and approaches
  • Evaluations of new approaches
  • Shared ‘horizon scanning’ and awareness and discussions on what can be done (e.g. food fraud)
  • Learning from effective and efficient practices in other (non–food) sectors
  • Codes of practice and other working guides
  • Training – content, bespoke training, apprenticeships, best practices, continuing development
  • Attracting the right people into food manufacturing
  • Industry ‘culture’ – striving for excellence
  • Socio–political issues impacting on manufacturers (e.g. Brexit, regulations, consumer acceptability)
  • Market information, commercial trends and consumer trends

Steering MFR projects from this MIG

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