How demand for greater flexibility in pet food formulation requires us to improve our production process.
How do you cope with the countless changes in formulation driven by market demands, FDA regulations and marketing gurus? This ever-changing landscape of powders, meat inclusions and spices to feed our beloved four-footed friends? When talking about pet food formulation, we often focus on nutrition and optimisation. But what about the factories that manufacture these foods? Are they even up to the task?
Sadly, the answer is often no. While the possibilities and demands have increased dramatically over the last decade, our factories are lagging behind. Recipes are complicated, and many ingredients must be added by hand, resulting in hard labour in dusty areas. To guarantee quality is always up to the highest standard, everything must be track and traceable, so we can know exactly where the food is produced, what went into it and when.
In short, our factories have changed from making a simple set of diets in long runs to a high complexity of formulations and processes in shorter runs, resulting in a battle between our needs and production capabilities.
How to cope?
However, there is light at the end of the tunnel. As a specialist in dosing and weighing technology for pet food, KSE has a unique perspective on this dynamic and changing landscape and first-hand experience with developing solutions to cope with the challenges.
The company offers a robust portfolio of dosing and weighing technology, including its unique dosing slide,
weigher-in-weigher systems, containerised systems and automation, together with a specialty blend of knowledge for the pet food, premix and feed industry, built on over 80 years of experience.
The company is one of a handful of pioneering premium suppliers that have invested in new technology, building production facilities all over the world with a higher level of sanitation, track and traceability, accuracy and transparency, which it refers to as the ‘Factory of the Future’.
Make it future-proof
Future-proof designs are here to enable the greater flexibility that is expected of a modern-day factory. For example, a dosing slide has major advantages over its well-known competitor: the dosing screw. With a much higher accuracy, higher dosing speed and larger dosing range it can easily outperform traditional systems. Furthermore, the movement of the dosing slide activates the product and reduces bridging and rat-holing.
The use of gravity, in turn, reduces power consumption, making it a greener solution and, combined with driving weighers, it achieves higher flexibility. Unique weigher-in-weigher solutions provide single gram accuracies, making it possible to dose grams up to hundreds of kilograms using the same systems.
Another major trend is containerised systems to use as a silo or to move product around the entire factory. This eliminates contamination during transport or when exchanging ingredients and provides the ability to have multi-type products for multiple species in the same lines. All this, combined with high-end technology for data analysis and optimisation, enables you to process pet food like never before.
Up to the task
Look at your own process and ask yourself this: ‘Am I able to produce everything nutritionists think up in their lab, accurately and traceably without contamination?’ If the answer is no, you know you will have to act.
Getting your factory up to this task is not just a need, but mandatory to help your brand survive. The future truly is now.