BinSentry, a company focused on increasing efficiencies and worker safety in the $500B global animal feed supply chain, has made significant technology advancements that can increase profits and help reduce feed waste and carbon emissions.
Pairing accurate feed inventory IoT sensors with new software tools that utilize artificial intelligence (AI) to create alerts and suggestions can unlock new cost savings and optimize feed resources for feed mills and animal producers alike.
“Sensors are a vital part of the equation, but they need to be extremely accurate in order to really help," said Nathan Hoel, CTO for BinSentry. "Our latest 3D sensors have proven to be more than 98% accurate, each one taking over 9,000 measurements multiple times a day to account for uneven product flow, even in humid weather,”
Digitization of the feed supply chain
The new 3D sensors still use BinSentry’s patented installation technology that allows them to install in less than 15 minutes with no need for wires or hubs of any kind. Every device is powered by solar and can last for months without sunlight. Each device is also equipped with its own dedicated LTE-M modem that keeps it connected even in remote locations.
Software tools that can ingest, interpret, and improve the information that the sensors provide contributes to cost savings for feed mills and animal producers.
“We’ve gone from multiple employees ordering feed in multiple ways to having a single person in charge of feed ordering and demand forecasting," said Nick DeKryger at Belstra, a leading feed mill and swine producer in Indiana. "It’s a night and day difference. Before, we couldn’t see what was happening with feed at our farms, and now we can.”
Dennis Organ, previous CEO at Smithfield Foods, the largest pork company in the world, and chairman of the board at BinSentry, says BinSentry allows producers and feed mills to gain visibility to the controllable costs in their feed supply chain.
"Supply chain costs are typically managed by comparing them to prior performance," said Organ. "BinSentry’s digitization of the feed supply chain will allow producers to compare their performance to their potential, not just their past.
"Accurate real-time visibility of on-hand inventory, a feed consumption budget based on barn population and genetics, all seamlessly integrated with existing software tools, will provide the visibility that is critical for the industry to move from the current inefficient analog process to the digitized mill of the future," he added.
Evolving data management
BinSentry has filed two new patents within the last few months.
“While the hardware is important, the software that allows it to be so accurate and reliable is unique to BinSentry, and we will continue to invest in this IP,” said BinSentry's Hoel.
Owning this data stream for animal feed inventory has given BinSentry the opportunity to evolve its data management tools and focus efforts on supporting customer efforts to benefit from this new data stream.
“Our customers are good at managing animal feed," said Ben Allen, CEO at BinSentry. "We can help them be great. Every time we help them reduce feed expenses by 1%, that cost savings drops straight down to their bottom line. These companies manage inputs aggressively, and supporting their efforts to manage their largest input, animal feed, is what we do every day."