Agricultural businesses can benefit greatly from temperature monitoring solutions, like those offered by Ikhaya Automation Systems. How? Read on to find out:
The context of South African agriculture:
To understand the importance of temperature monitoring for the agricultural industry, it’s important to first understand the context of agriculture in South Africa. Consider KZN: it’s the best-watered province in the country, with extremely fertile soil, signalling tremendous potential to serve the country’s agricultural sector. South Africa’s rate of population growth and access to export markets, through provincial ports, are more signals of the critical role that the agricultural sector can play, even beyond national borders.
Where does temperature monitoring fit in?
Temperature monitoring becomes vital for businesses working with agricultural produce. Once harvested and processed, produce quality and shelf life hinge almost entirely on the correct conditions, in transit to and while stored at distribution centres and retailers.
How much can temperatures vary for agricultural produce?
Ideal temperatures which must be maintained for agricultural produce vary from 4-14°C.
Why is it so important to maintain food temperatures?
Even small fluctuations in ambient temperature, up to 10°C, can reduce the shelf life of food products by a massive 50%. Monitoring temperatures at every stage of food production, transportation and storage is critical to food security for every community.
How can agribusinesses seek support from Ikhaya?
Ikhaya Automation Systems can provide your agricultural business with intelligent temperature monitoring solutions. Ikhaya’s temperature monitoring solution comes with sensors that can be calibrated to fit your exact compliance requirements. There is also a smart dashboard that lets you drill down to the level of detail you need, across all the sensors you have installed in your business.
Examples of agribusinesses using temperature monitors:
Here are a few examples of how agribusinesses like yours are using Ikhaya’s temperature monitoring solution:
- Warehousing ambient temperature: ensure that you have a well-controlled environment with minimal fluctuations in ambient temperature. Ikhaya’s solution alerts you as soon as temperature moves out of your ideal range, so you can take action without an entire warehouse of products spoiling. Depending on the size of your warehouse, temperature fluctuations can be detected both horizontally and vertically across floors, so that every product you store is kept at the correct temperature.
- Fridges and freezers: If a component of your refrigeration system fails, and your fridge or freezer temperature moves out of range, you will receive an immediate notification by SMS and/or email. This way, you can move the stock to another fridge or freezer and prevent spoilage, while you attend to the failed component.
- Ikhaya’s system is so versatile that you can also use it to read power and door status. This means that you can repair fridges with problematic door seals, for example, in good time, and without losing any stock to spoilage.
Does Ikhaya offer temperature mapping for agribusinesses?
Yes. Dozens of our temperature loggers get placed at different locations, in a three-dimensional pattern, across your facility. The loggers constantly mark the temperature over short and regular intervals for at least 72 consecutive hours. The collected data is transformed into an accurate temperature map of your facility.
For the most accurate results, we recommend updating your temperature map every six months.
How are temperature maps used by agricultural businesses?
Temperature maps are used to determine the best location for your real-time temperature monitors within your facility. These real-time temperature monitors are part of our offering at Ikhaya. As soon as one of the monitors senses a temperature fluctuation, a notification will automatically be sent to your nominated contacts so your maintenance team can focus exactly where the problem is, immediately.
An example of a benefit from this process would be that you can intervene long before your facility’s environment reaches a critical temperature threshold.
For how long do agricultural businesses need to store data?
Temperature data should be stored for five years. Ikhaya’s temperature monitoring solution includes detailed temperature reports, with easy-to-read graphs, that can be emailed daily to your nominated contacts. Every aspect of the system is designed to support you through business verification and audits.
Is Ikhaya’s temperature monitoring system automatic?
Yes. Your temperature readings can be taken around the clock, every day, without human intervention. The data is made available to any Internet-enabled device in the world, including your smartphone. This means that maintenance and support teams can be deployed across numerous sites, reducing the cost of site-based maintenance.