dairy
Challenges and new technologies in the dairy industry
22 July 2019
Challenges and new technologies in the fruits & vegetables industry
5 August 2019

IoT in the dairy industry. A European Project.

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Introduction

We at Wenda are coordinators of the European project  called Beverage Integrity Tracking, a part of the “Fruit Trial” from IoF2020 (Ndt: Internet Of Food&Farm 2020) – a European financing project specifically dedicated to IoT in the Agrifood sector, to build a more sustainable Food value chain with the help of innovative technologies – that involves the participation of partner companies (SIVE, VINIDEAs, Highclere Consulting e VINIDEA) and other stakeholders from Agrifood and IoT value chain as well. 

You can access Wenda’s project details here; we want to contribute to the dissemination of new technologies and the diffusion of projects based on them. That is why in the following article we will discuss about another IoF2020 project which is targeted to the implementation of technological innovations in the dairy industry.

A European project: The internet of dairy farming

The dairy sector, a major agricultural production sector for all EU-28, has been facing vulnerable times. Since the abandoning of the milk quota in 20151, milk has been subject to heavy price fluctuations. In order to remain competitive on the world market, the European dairy sector needs to improve its production processes.

The internet of dairy farming, the IoF2020’s dairy trial, has the objective of addressing this challenge by implementing and demonstrating the use of real‐time sensor data gathered from neck collars together with GPS location data, machine learning technologies and cloud-based services to create value in the dairy chain from ‘grass to glass’. 

Precision Livestock Farming (PLF) is key to satisfy the increasing world-wide demand for good quality animal products in combination with responsible farming. Reducing environmental impact, diminishing resource use and increasing animal welfare while at the same time intensifying productivity is the imminent challenge faced by the dairy sector.

Data on the feeding and reproduction patterns of cows provide input to detect health issues at an early stage, for example. Early warning systems and quality data to calibrate sensors remotely enable a more efficient use of resources and will improve milk quality monitoring.

In this trial, IoT technology helps to use resources more efficiently, ensure high quality milk, improve animal welfare and decrease environmental impact. The use cases will utilize the platform 365Farmnet to enable the seamless exchange of IoT data and services. The dairy trial consists of seven use-cases:

  • Grazing Cow Monitor: monitoring and managing the outdoor grazing of cows by GPS tracking within ultra-narrow band communication networks;
    • Happy Cow: improving dairy farm productivity through 3D cow activity sensing, IoT and cloud machine learning technologies;
    • Herdsman: managing herd alerts by a high-node count distributed sensor network and a cloud-based platform for decision-making;
    • Remote Dairy Quality: assuring remote quality of accurate instruments, analysis and proactive control in the dairy chain;
    • Multisensor cow monitoring: achieving more efficient and sustainable livestock farming through a unique Smart Rumen Monitoring System and cloud-based data processing application;
  • Precision mineral supplementation: precision mineral feeding of dairy cows to reduce resources, benefit animal welfare and the environment;
  • Early lameness detection through machine learning: using machine learning to identify early lameness in cattle at an early stage to increase animal welfare and lower treatment costs.

“The dairy trial has two faces. One is that it really demonstrates in practice that IoT and interoperability work, and the other that a total new concept of remote calibration of sensors will be explored” said Kees Lokhorst, Co-system trial chair and Coordinator for Precision Livestock Farming, Wageningen University & Research (WUR).

WENDA: Information Management Hub for Food&Beverage supply chains 

Wenda, an Italian startup backed by European investors, wants to understand the necessities and face the challenges of the dairy industry, supporting it with advanced technologies to offer an Information Management Hub for advanced supply chain tracking used by the main Food&Beverage actors , improving quality, logistics and sales.

Shaped for the dairy industry, Wenda’s Hub is a digital solution for cold chain advanced monitoring, instrumental to offer a fresh, safe product and to drastically reduce product returns.

Wenda’s Information Management Hub can support all the dairy industry actors operating with perishable or sensitive products: data loggers are inserted into each box, pallet or container of any given shipment, in order to collect environmental data (geolocalisation, temperature, Food integrity); data are sent to the Wenda Information Management Hub, the web platform that aggregates, compares and processes them.

 Subsequently, you can follow in real time and from a single control point the product’s conditions via advanced integrity analytics embedded in the Hub, gaining knowledge of the hazard points in the cold chain, ensuring the best product care and enhancing internal processes.

Furthermore, the Wenda platform is equipped with both a cloud wallet of shareable journey documents and pictures, and differential data access levels: the configuration is entirely customisable according to the company’s needs and allows to share real-time shipment/storage documents, choosing which documents may be deemed accessible and whom can access them (among a list including clients, logistics, quality, sales, insurance companies and certification bodies).

Finally, in light of the IoT hardware constant evolution (in this case regarding the different data loggers commercially available), Wenda has made the Information Management Hub interoperable with the main devices, ERPs, traceability softwares and Blockchain ledgers present on the market. That way, you can be on the frontline of digital innovation and at the same time maintain your well-oiled management system.

To have further information, to know more about us or to schedule a demo of the Wenda Information Management Hub, we invite you to visit our website: https://www.wenda-it.com/.

  1. Given surpluses in milk, butter and dairy products detected across Europe at the beginning of 1980s, Regulation (CEE) n. 856/84 introduced a scheme to counter milk production excesses and the subsequent price fall through the allocation of milk quotas for each Member State.