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Optimising energy management in food production - FO0117

The overall objective of the joint project will be to develop a methodology for assessing and improving the energy efficiency of food manufacturing operations, from intake of raw ingredients to final food product output, and to validate these using industry case studies. This project will then disseminate these recommendations throughout the food sector. The interim objectives for the project will be:

1. Identify key food manufacturing unit operations that would benefit from improved energy management. This will be in the form of a review document that will survey energy use and optimisation across the disparate food industry sectors. It will be done in conjunction with industry members. The document will be published and made available to the food industry. This will also provide background information for workshops and seminars to be held disseminate all findings from this project.

2. Establish methods that can be used for effective energy measurement. This will initially take the form of a literature survey of energy measurement technologies and how they can be applied in manufacturing. It will review the outputs from past projects in energy measurement and optimisation from other process and manufacturing sectors. It will also involve discussions with instrument manufacturers to ascertain the appropriate measurement methods to be used in the food sector.

3. Select three food manufacturing operations that can provide suitable case study demonstrations of the benefits of energy optimisation. This exercise has already been discussed with the food industry panel members at Campden and it is planned to use case studies involving: heat preserved foods (e.g. a retort processing system), bakery products (e.g. a bread or cake baking oven) and meat cooking (e.g. a steam meat cooker).

4. Validate the energy measurement and optimisation methods at Campden BRI and in industry. Campden BRI has a range of pilot-scale process equipment (equipment which is a smaller version of that used in industry) that is ideally suited to this work. Energy measurement instrumentation identified will be tested on pilot-scale and further validated at industry full-scale manufacturing equipment with selected industry contributors. Several members of the Campden BRI panels have expressed willingness to contribute to these trials.

5. Collate the findings of this project into recommendations for better energy management for the food manufacturing industry. This will be in the form of guideline documents and case-study reports. These will be disseminated widely throughout industry, using the contacts from both Defra and Campden BRI. The outputs of the project will also be presented at planned workshops and seminars to be held towards the end of the project (summer 2013). Particular emphasis will be placed on disseminating the information from this project to SME food manufacturers.

Overall, the Campden BRI funded part of the project will cover the practical experimental work on energy management systems and their application in industry. The Defra funded part of the project will extend the scope of the project to review previous work and best practice guidance in energy management, across food and other process sectors, and disseminate the findings of the overall project to a wider audience including SMEs.
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2014

To: 2013

Cost: £45,000
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Campden Technology Limited
Food manufacturing industry              
Fields of Study
Resource Efficient and Resilient Food Chain