Nowadays more and more companies want to take advantage of the digitalization of their factories and, also, the old animal feed factories ask us for support to automate their processes and make the most of their daily manufacturing of animal feed.

These factories get in touch with Sothis because they want to obtain great traceability of their raw materials and finished manufactured products, controlling, from its origin, all the ingredients that make up each recipe, as well as guaranteeing the perfect homogenization of each of them and treatment of the same.

Do not forget that this process is increasingly controlled by the health authorities of our country, who carry out control audits of the factories, as the animal food that we consume is also directly part of our food chain and therefore, the food that animals ingest directly affects our health, although sometimes we are not aware of these small details.

Now I ask you…

Have you ever stopped to think, for example, about what would happen in Spain if one of the factories that produces a specific type of food for an animal mistakenly produced a batch of feed? Imagine that this food contained more of a specific additive of a recipe that was harmful in large quantities for human consumption. Cases like this have already happened, as reported by some media outlets.

Nowadays it is becoming less and less likely for this to happen, as a feed factory must have full control of the traceability of its raw materials, in addition to the dosage of the additives of each recipe. This whole subject is increasingly controlled and automated, thanks to technologies such as those we implemented by Sothis. The complete automation of the entire process without the need to dismantle obsolete factories, the contribution of new state-of-the-art equipment, such as RFID control systems, more modern weighing system software, flow meters, factory SCADAs with 3D graphic environments communicated by Profinet; state-of-the-art programmable controllers, etc. Without forgetting the most important thing: the MES/MOM systems for controlling the Big Data that the factory provides us. These systems ensure the exhaustive traceability of all the raw materials and additives that make up each feed recipe from its origin. Therefore, if there is a national health alert, we could quickly identify the batch of product that is in a poor condition that caused the outbreak and the origins of the raw materials and additives that made up that batch from the supplier, being able to act quickly and take it off the market in a short space of time.

Our vertical for controlling grain

At Sothis we have developed thanks to our “Know How” in this field of automation and implementation of MES real time data processing systems in production plants, a specific product for the automation and total control of a feed and grain plant, called “Grain Control”. In addition, our technicians who implement this technology are directly related to the production processes of these factories due to the experience we have in this sector.

We install the SIEMENS Simatic IT software which is the platform that Sothis uses to implement all the control software in addition to communicating this to the client’s ERP (Factory Management Software) ensuring total and absolute control of the following parts of their factory and many more:

  • Total control of the receptions of raw materials of the different suppliers.
  • Total control of the shipments of batches stored in the silos of your factory.
  • Total control of each batch of feed manufactured, where you will have screens in which the user can check the status of all batches of feed that are being manufactured by the system due to production orders.
  • Total control of drivers and unloading where you will find screens that will show a list of the information of all drivers registered in your company and raw material received.
  • Total control of your Clients as you will have screens where the user can view the list of registered clients.
  • Total control of the Suppliers of raw materials and additives, you will have screens for controlling your warehouse, pallets and bulk product.
  • Total control of the traceability of each batch and the different raw materials used in it.
  • Very intuitive graphics of all our factory’s indicators (KPIS) percentages of each product that makes up each batch, percentages of additives in each recipe, percentage of medicines supplied in each recipe.

    Image of a pie chart with the additives that make up a recipe
    Image of a pie chart with the additives that make up a recipe

In addition, nowadays it is not an excuse to not be able to implement a customized solution in your factory, such as the one we provide at Sothis, with total traceability, as there are different subsidies that the government offers directly to finance all the companies that want jump on the Industry 4.0 bandwagon.

These subsidies support the incorporation of new technologies and innovations aimed at the digitalization of processes and the creation of technologically advanced products and services, and of greater added value in industrial companies. At Sothis we help interested companies to get this kind of help, that’s why we are your Technology Partner.

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Sergio is a business development technician in the UNE AC with more than 20 years of experience in industrial automation. Responsible for the "Grain Control" project for feed mills.