APRIL Eye finalist in World Food Innovation Awards 2019
Our APRIL Eye artificial intelligence-based vision system for label & date code verification was a finalist in the World Food Innovation Awards 2019! Competing in the category of ‘Best manufacturing / processing technology’, it was a real privilege to be recognised by the judges at this year’s event. With APRIL Eye, manufacturers can fully automate the date code verification process to reduce the risk of product recalls and emergency product withdrawals (EPWs) caused by human error on packaging lines. Reaching speeds of over 300 packs a minute, APRIL Eye can significantly improve processes, increasing safety, quality and efficiency, as well as achieving substantial cost savings!
The annual World Food Innovation Awards, in association with FoodBev Media, took place at the International Food and Drink Event (IFE) in London on 18 March 2019. The judging panel whittled down 380 entries from over 33 countries to come up with a shortlist in each of the 27 categories. Following the success our innovation has already enjoyed, previously taking home three industry awards, it was fantastic to see yet more recognition for our unique patent-pending technology.
APRIL Eye combines machine learning and artificial intelligence to transform the traditional date code verification process. Instead of relying on operators to check the date code is printed correctly, APRIL Eye offers a fully automated solution that removes the human error inherent in these boring, repetitive tasks. By taking photos of each date code, the system can read them back using scanners to ensure they match the programmed date code for that product run, allowing you to introduce unmanned operations and achieve full traceability. Running at speeds of over 1000 packs a minute, you can also increase throughput without compromising product safety. The production line comes to a complete stop if a date code doesn’t match, ensuring that no incorrect labels can be released into the supply chain, protecting your consumers, your margins and your brand.
OAL developed APRIL Eye, which uses basic cameras backed up with an artificial brain to deliver a vision system that can deal with variations such as lighting, positioning, print quality and placement inherent in a food or beverage plant and read anything that is also legible to the naked eye. In this way, APRIL Eye eliminates errors, offers full traceability and protects consumers and your brand while at the same time reducing labour costs and waste. The system also improves over time, further safeguarding your lines.
Wayne Johnson, OAL Connected Director, comments, “We’re delighted that the industry feels that our APRIL Eye system is as effective as we think it is! It’s a huge plus to get so much industry recognition, which supports our claim that APRIL Eye is a real game changer for the food industry. Following the formal launch of the technology in January 2019, we’re starting to gain some real traction in the industry and we can’t wait to bring our innovation to even more manufacturers around the globe.”
FoodBev Media senior marketing executive Matt Ferris adds: "We are delighted to celebrate the fifth year of the annual World Food Innovation Awards at IFE. In a highly competitive year, we've been given a unique glimpse into the latest and greatest food industry innovations and have marvelled at the calibre of our entrants. We've seen some key trends emerge as the industry continues to make inroads in sustainability, waste reduction, health and transparency. The World Food Innovation Awards really showcase some of the most ambitious new products and developments of the year from both new and established brands."