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No hungry animals, ensures the automatic feed silo


The newly developed system makes sure that farm animals won’t run out of food. One of the largest companies in the EU animal feed sector, Suomen Rehu Oy, has developed a feed silo that places feed orders automatically.

In the Signal 24 mobile technology-based ordering service, the silo is equipped with a measuring transducer that senses when the silo is running out of feed. This takes place several days before the silo should receive new feed supplies. From the silo, the data is transferred as a signal to Suomen Rehu, where it is entered as a new order direct in the factory’s order-book. The method can be used by domestic animal farms using Suomen Rehu’s feeds in bulk.

Automatic ordering of feeds enables the farmer to use his or her working hours for other, more profitable types of work. Thanks to the new technology, the risk of running accidentally out of feed is minimised. This ensures animal welfare. As soon as automatic ordering becomes more common, it will increase cost-efficiency within the whole ordering and supply chain.

The method has been tested in practice on six domestic animal farms in Finland. On the basis of experiences gained, two different ordering alternatives have been built for the service. The smart silo service places an order automatically, all the customer has to do is to accept or cancel the order. When the mobile service is used, the customer sends an ordering signal using his or her mobile phone.

The new ordering method is available 24 hours a day, on each day of the year. On the farm, from which the signal is transmitted, standardised transducer, transmitter and mobile technology is used. At Suomen Rehu, where the signal is received, the data is integrated direct into the factory’s own ERP system, BPCS.

Suomen Rehu Oy is the largest company in the animal feed sector in Finland and one of the largest in the EU. The company develops, produces and markets feeds for cattle, pigs, poultry and animals bred for fur, as well as for pets. It operates in the Nordic and Baltic countries and Russia.

The smart silo was developed in the E-Farm project included in the Tekes, the National Technology Agency, technology programme e-Business Logistics (ELO). In Finland, the method is the first automatic, mobile technology-based system for ordering feeds.

Mira Banerjee | alfa
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