Product showcase: how Balluff’s “smart factory” products streamline the packaging, food and beverage industry

By April 12, 2019Product news

What’s on everyone’s wish list for optimal productivity in manufacturing?

Equipment efficiency. Minimised downtime. Shorter production runs. These are common goals across all manufacturing industries. They drive the need for smart machines – and ultimately, a smart factory.

This is particularly important in the packaging, food and beverage (PFB) industry to ensure products and processes are clean, safe and efficient.

Converting a manufacturing process to a smart process has many benefits, but how can you develop a smart factory for the PFB industry?

  • Update your controls architecture
  • Automate changeover processes
  • Use networking devices that feature predictive maintenance
  • Incorporate RFID technology for traceability

All of these greatly improve overall equipment efficiency (OEE) and reduce time spent troubleshooting.

Using IO-Link technology and smart devices connected to IO-Link, with continuous diagnostics and predictive maintenance, reduces troubleshooting time because IO-Link systems alert operators to sensor malfunctions and when preventative maintenance is required.

Using RFID throughout the process —tracking of raw materials, finished goods, and totes leaving the facility — can greatly increase the efficiency and throughput of the process. RFID can even be applied to change part detection to identify if the correct equipment is being swapped in or out during change over.

Ultimately, adding smart solutions to a PFB production line:

  • Improves efficiency
  • Increases output
  • Minimises downtime
  • Saves money

As the exclusive distribution partner for Balluff Australia, Pacific Automation has distribution rights to all its products in Western Australia, Northern Territory and select regions of Australia.

For more information about Balluff products, email or visit As with all Pacific Automation products, you’ll receive technical support and application advice.

This post was adapted from Balluff’s Insights’ blog.