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Automation technology for the food industry Icon food industry

At a glance: Most important facts and product recommendations for food production

In food production, automation products should meet prescribed quality characteristics and standards. But which special properties and standards are important? And which products from our range are suitable for your industry? You can discover them here!
Automation technology for the food industry

High demands in all branches of the food industry

Suitable products for the food industry in the range of Automation24

What requirements should automation technology meet in the food industry?

High demands in all branches of the food industry

Food industry

The food industry is one of the most important branches of industry. Food must meet high quality standards, be inexpensive, fast as well as available in large quantities.

Therefore, in industrial food production it is all about constant product quality, compliance with hygiene regulations, high system availability and efficiency. Regardless of whether in beverage production, milk processing, confectionery and bakery production, in meat processing or in frozen food processing – a smooth production process can only be achieved with high-quality automation technology.

Suitable products for the food industry in the range of Automation24

Within the Automation24 portfolio you will find a selection of high-quality products from ifm electronic, Endress+Hauser, PHOENIX CONTACT, and LED2WORK, which are suitable for food production. An overview is provided below:

Inductive sensors Inductive sensors for food processing

Robust models from ifm with high protection ratings of IP68/IP96K for reliable position detection.

Conductivity sensors Conductivity sensors for food processing

Conductivity sensors from ifm for concentration detection of cleaning liquids, rinse water monitoring for residues and the granting of production approval in cleaning processes (CIP).

Photoelectric sensors Photoelectric sensors for food processing

Compact sensors from ifm with Ecolab certification for object detection even in highly reflective environments.

Pressure sensors Pressure sensors for food processing

Hygienic and temperature-resistant series PI27 and PG27 from ifm for pressure monitoring and level measurement.

Pressure transmitters Pressure transmitters for food processing

Vibration-resistant pressure transmitters from ifm made of robust stainless steel housings.

Temperature transmitters Temperature transmitters for food processing

Temperature transmitters from ifm in a hygienic design with a fast response time and high protection rating.

Resistance thermometers Resistance thermometers for food processing

Resistance thermometers from ifm in a hygienic design with fast response times for precise measurements and a high protection rating.

Point level sensors Point level sensors for food processing

The hygienic sensors of the LMT series from ifm have all relevant approvals (EHEDG, 3-A and FDA).

Humidity sensors Humidity sensors for food processing

Capacitive combination sensors from TiTEC for reliable measurement of the relative humidity and temperature in indoor and outdoor areas.

Vibrating level switches Vibrating level switches for the food industry

Reliable vibronic point level detectors from Endress+Hauser, for the fill level detection of liquids and bulk goods, such as sugar, rice, and cereals.

Capacitive level transmitters Capacitive level transmitters for the food industry

Capacitance point level detectors from Endress+Hauser for the point level
detection of conductive liquids such as water, acids or bases, or for the point level detection of powdery or fine-grained solids such as flour, sugar, or spices.

Conductive level switches Conductive level switches for the food industry

Conductive level switches from Endress+Hauser, for use in areas in which conductive or sediment-forming
paste-like media such as soft cheese, yoghurt, or ice cream are used.

Rotary paddle switches Rotary paddle switches for the food industry

Endress+Hauser rotary paddle point level switches are ideally suited as full, empty, or requirement indicators in bulk material silos, such as grain or fodder silos.

Industrial thermometers Industrial thermometers for the food industry

PT100 temperature sensors from Endress+Hauser in a robust stainless steel housing, for hygienic and sterile applications, up to a temperature of 200°C.

Compact thermometers Compact thermometers for the food industry

Compact and vibration-resistant PT100 temperature transmitters from Endress+Hauser, with a high IP67/IP68/IP69K protection class and a quick response time, for a temperature
range from -50°C to 200°C.

Data managers / data loggers Data managers / data loggers for the food industry

Paperless data loggers from Endress+Hauser for the recording, visualisation, and monitoring of all analogue or digital input signals.

Sensor cables Sensor cables for food processing

The vibration-resistant EVF series from ifm made of stainless steel enables secure and permanently sealed connections.

Circular connectors Circular connectors for food processing

The type EVF from ifm with its highly elastic cable seal directly at the cable entry ensures reliable protection against contamination.

Sensor/actuator boxes Sensor/actuator boxes for food processing

The stainless steel series SACB from PHOENIX CONTACT with a high protection rating thanks to the encapsulated housing.

Surface mount luminaires Tube luminaires for food processing

Material-resistant and IFS-compliant INROLED-50 series from LED2WORK for perfect lighting conditions in wet areas.

Control & signalling devices SIRIUS ACT Control & signalling devices

Robust SIRIUS ACT control and signalling devices from Siemens with protection rating up to IP69K and high media resistance.

As an alternative to ifm pressure sensors and pressure transmitters, you can also make use of the tried and tested gauge pressure transmitters from Endress+Hauser in order to measure relative pressures, with a temperature range from -1 to 400 bar. These are used for hygiene-sensitive applications, under harsh conditions, in environments with gases, vapours, liquids or dust.

In addition, at Automation24 you will find many products for secondary processes in food processing such as compressed air meters for compressed air monitoring and vibration sensors for vibration monitoring of your pumps. You will also receive monitoring of valve and flap positions as well as position reporting inductive dual sensors as well as their associated target pucks for status visualisation. In order to efficiently monitor and control the perfect interaction of your components, you do not have to do without the appropriate control systems from Siemens in your food production.

What requirements should automation technology meet in the food industry?

The sensor and automation components used in food processing should meet the prescribed norms of food processing and high technical standards.

Review of guidelines for the food industry

Known standards that certify suitability for use in food production

One of the standards that should be met is, for example, the EHEDG standard for the European market. This is awarded according to the guidelines of the European Engineering & Design Group (EHEDG). This is an association of experts from health authorities, food specialists and research institutes who have specified guidelines for hygienic food processing and packaging.

For the American market, the components should also be 3A and FDA compliant. 3A compliance is confirmed by 3A Sanitary Standard Inc., the American counterpart to the EHEDG. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the American regulatory authority for pharmaceutical products and food, however, assigns the FDA approval. This confirms that the regulations for the use of materials in the hygiene area are complied with.

At the international level, the International Featured Standard Food (IFS Food) certification is another well-known standard in the food industry. This certifies a safe and quality-preserving handling of food and was created by the main association of the German retail trade (HDE) as well as representatives of the food retail trade (LEH).

Required product properties for food processing

Food processing machinery carry a high risk of contamination from residues that can repeatedly enter the production process. Therefore, frequent and regular cleaning of the machinery is essential. This is done using the automatic CIP/SIP cleaning procedure. CIP stands for "Clean-In-Place". This means that the automation components are largely cleaned without dismantling the inner surfaces that come into contact with food. SIP is the abbreviation for "Sterilisation-In-Place" and is performed as a supplement according to the CIP procedure if necessary. In this step, harmful microorganisms are killed using hot water as well as optionally, by adding aggressive cleaning agents or steam.

To withstand these intensive cleaning processes, the automation components used must have a high level of impermeability such as protection rating IP69(K) as well as a high temperature and material resistance. Ecolab certification confirms the durability of the cleaning solutions. Particularly recommended in this context are components made of high-alloy stainless steel or plastic, such as e.g. PEEK because they are corrosion-resistant and insensitive to the chemical substances used in cleaning.

Furthermore, the automation components should have a continuous and smooth hygienic design according to DIN EN 1672-2 to prevent food residues from getting stuck in the dead zones. Compliance with EU directive EC 1935/2004 confirms that the materials may come into contact with food.

Hygienic cleaning in the food industry
The food industry places high demands on automation technology. At Automation24 you will find suitable products that meet the requirements of the food industry. You also benefit from excellent prices and rapid delivery from stock. Purchase today!