Wireless temperature data loggers are used during the cheese production process from initial monitoring of freezers storing cultures, through cold storage and warehousing, to temperature controlled distribution. Effective monitoring ensures quality standards are maintained throughout the cold chain.
Cheese making since 1911 makes Long Clawson of Melton Mowbray
experts in the field, and their commitment to their origins, as an
East Midlands dairy co-operative, has seen the group grow to a £50
million turnover business. With three sites, the group have
embraced new technology to perfect their art. Temperature
monitoring has helped Long Clawson control the processing of their
cheese to produce exceptional quality time after time.
Radio or Wireless
Data Logging System by Gemini Data Loggers (UK) Ltd has
provided a useful solution for Long Clawson. Data loggers are used
to monitor temperature both on site and during transportation;
helping to prove that a constant temperature is maintained during
distribution. High standards of product need to be maintained
throughout the supply chain and the loggers ensure that
temperatures are recorded throughout and easily downloaded when
back on site.
The loggers are also used to monitor temperature in the starter
freezers where the cultures for the initial stages of cheese making
are kept. "Maintaining correct storage temperatures helps ensure
the starter cultures perform to their optimum in the cheese making
process", comments John Burdett, Technical Manager of Long Clawson.
"This helps us reduce waste and guarantee
delivery and quality promises". It is no wonder that the company
has a long list of credible awards for their Stilton® Cheeses. John
remarks on a further important benefit of the loggers: "They have
an alarm that will notify a nominated person of a fluctuation in
temperature during a non-active time, for example, over the weekend
or late evening. This serves to address a potential problem, before
it becomes one."
The radio loggers have their own local memory to avoid loss of
data in case of dropped signals, and this is useful both in the
warehouse and in distribution. In the warehouse, the user places
each logger within 200 metres of another and there is no limit to
the amount of loggers the user can have. This self-configuring army
of radio loggers will transmit data back to the central base
station or receiver. If the data route back is blocked by a
temporary obstruction, for example a forklift truck, data will
bypass the obstruction by being transmitted to a neighbouring
logger and from there back to the receiver.
In distribution, the Tinytag Radio system
provides an important advantage when delivery vans are away from
the depot and therefore out of range of the receiver (which is
connected to a PC at the distribution centre). Each refrigerated
delivery van is fitted with a wireless temperature logger, which is
able to store or cache temperature data as the delivery van slips
out of range of the receiver while out on delivery. As the vans
return to the depot and therefore back within range of the
receiver, the logger resumes a connection and automatically sends
all cached data to the computer. No driver action is required.
The Tinytag Radio or wireless mesh networking
system is an intelligent system which allows the user to gather
and collate data at one central point, rather than download each
individual data logger. Data is collated using Tinytag Explorer software,
which presents the information in various user friendly formats,
viewable by any PC on the network.
As demonstrated by Long Clawson, the system works well in the
food processing industry because of the need to meet the
requirements of Food Safety Legislation and a company's own quality