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Automation in the Food Industry.

AUTOMATION in the FOOD INDUSTRY, Edited by C A Moore. 212 pages with index. Price: 58.00 [pound]. (UK: The Blackie Publishing Group)

Automation is upon us and the food industry has taken up the idea very strongly. This book has been designed as a guide to automation within the food industry and offers practical advice on where the most effective use of automation can be made. As far as possible, examples are used to demonstrate what has and can be done. In recent years great efforts have been made to control, mechanise and check that food processing systems are running correctly. All this effort has driven manufacturing costs down or held them below the rate of inflation. New products created new problems in line control and the largest companies now rely heavily on computerised control to ensure high levels of output and consistent product.

Besides the editor, ten authors were involved in creating this text. All are engineers with considerable experience in this field. The ten chapters are entitled: Introduction to food engineering; Total systems; Integrated factory systems; Specification for success; Computers in control; Operator interfaces; System and accuracy and reliability; Achieving integration; Computer enhancements; and Expert of knowledge-based systems.

The publishers aim has been to ensure that this book discusses real applications and solutions to real problems. As far as possible it is devoid of jargon to ensure that it can have the widest possible readership, and it indicates what can be achieved this very day. There are not many books that discuss the 'nitty gritty' of the real world because people tend to be involved either with the process or with computers, and not necessarily both.

Not all aspects of automation are covered here but chapter one examines food processing as an industry by looking at the various general stages involved; the next chapter goes on to consider how a whole factory is run. The natural sequence is followed in the next two chapters where the workings of integrated factories are studied. Computers and their availability are discussed, and the operators who interface with them; likewise the air of mystery is cleared as far as the jargon used is concerned. The following author examines how the various processes can be automated and a discussion of how whole factories can be automated follows. Finally, in the last chapter controllable processes that are user-friendly are the topic.

With the pressure on costs nowadays, automation is here to stay and we need to make it work to our requirements.
COPYRIGHT 1991 Food Trade Press Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Food Trade Review
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Jul 1, 1991
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