Each year,Food Engineering

Joyce Fassl
Each year,Food Engineeringhonors one food company in North America as a shining example of food or beverage manufacturing at its best. The search is now underway for the award-winning plant. We are looking for an outstanding new plant construction project, a major expansion or a highly renovated facility that is, or will be, completely operational during calendar year 2005.

Facilities submitted to the Food Engineering Plant of the Year competition are judged according to the following criteria: the plant's contribution to the company's long-term business plans or strategies; the level of innovation in processing and packaging line design, including post-production material handling; building and site innovation; on-time and on-budget performance; flexible manufacturing; level of automation; food safety innovation; worker safety innovation; and supply chain initiatives.

Any food or beverage company, architectural and engineering firm, or supplier to the plant may submit entries which are due on December 1, 2005. If you have a 2005 plant project that is highly innovative, please contact me for a Call for Entries brochure and entry form.

The 24th annual Food Plant of the Year award will be presented on April 11, 2006 at Food Engineering's Food Automation & Manufacturing Conference and Expo, scheduled for April 9-12 at the Sanibel Harbour Resort in Fort Myers, Florida. More than 200 food and beverage plant professionals are expected to attend.

A detailed narrative (maximum of 10 pages) in support of your entry is required. The narrative should document the ways in which the plant excels with reference to the judging criteria. However, if there are additional relevant matters that go beyond the criteria stated above, please be sure to call them to the judges' attention. These might include productivity improvement, worker recruitment and training, size of operation, manufacturing teams and implementation of new technologies such as RFID. Clearly captioned photos and illustrations should be submitted with the narrative. Please note: plants must produce finished, edible consumer products. Plants producing ingredients or commodities are not eligible for this competition.

We look forward to hearing about your latest operations and engineering innovations and welcome your entries. Good luck!

Food Enginnering Editorial Advisory Board

David Watson
Vice President, Engineering
Pepperidge Farm, Inc.

Kevin Mellor
Director, Processing Center of Excellence

John Eberle
Innovation Group Manager

Dave Plinski
Director, Dairy Foods Eningeering
Land O' Lakes

Dave Gemellaro
Director, Sector Engineering
Kraft Foods

Peter Migchels
Director of Engineering, Fresh Bakeries
Maple Leaf Foods

Tom Wolters
Senior Manager Technology
Pepsico Beverages & Food

Carl Krueger
Senior Manager, Global Engineering Services
H.J. Heinz