Designing Quality Into a Food Plant


Cys, Robert; Surak, John   (1991, ASQC)   CRS Sirrine Engineers, Inc., Greenville, SC

Annual Quality Congress, Milwaukee WI    Vol. 45    No. 0
QICID: 9601    May 1991    pp. 31-35
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Article Abstract

This article discusses ways to improve food quality and safety by implementing up-front planning processes and problem seeking techniques. Up-front planning provides a way to incorporate various quality strategies such as just-in time (JIT), statistical process control (SPC), and computer-aided manufacturing.

Problem seeking is an effective tool for eliminating errors that may develop during the construction of a food-processing plant. The planning team involved in the problem seeking process should be multi-disciplinary and should include line workers, operators, suppliers, external customers, and others who represent every facet of the business. The team works together to establish goals, collect data, uncover concepts, and define needs. During each of these steps, they must address four considerations: function, form, economy and time.

Upon completion of the problem seeking phase, the team focuses on problem solving. The steps involved in problem solving include:

  1. developing working requirements for the project;
  2. documenting the problems and issues to be resolved;
  3. developing schematic drawings that depict the building, process, and personnel flow diagrams; and
  4. summarizing the information in a report that becomes the master plan.
Upon completion of the problem seeking and problem solving processes, requirements can be presented to design engineers for development of blue prints and construction specifications. These specifications address the requirements for food safety, quality, and cost effectiveness.


Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM),Food products,Just in Time (JIT),Problem solving,Safety,Statistical process control (SPC)

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