The automation of dairy plant processing and packaging equipment controlled remotely with devices ranging from programmable logic controllers to sophisticated computer programs is becoming increasingly common. Older control systems were primarily for monitoring with some limited control functions. The risk of causing unintended food safety problems was limited.
Today, the average dairy plant control room usually has many PCs or laptop computers connected to a server to control most of the plant’s processing operations in real time. These new automation systems can be very vulnerable to malfunctions, which could lead to food safety challenges.