17/10/19 Updated 25/10/19

Exciting partnerships at the North American Software KnowHow

On 25-26 September, we were joined by over 100 participants at Progress Point in Kansas City for our first North American Software KnowHow. The goal of our software user conferences is to provide a forum for our customers to learn both from us and one another on how to better utilize Marel’s software.

"One of the best parts of the Software KnowHow for me was seeing two IT customers from big meat and fish companies exchanging business cards. Seeing customers from entirely different industries find a way to learn and work together towards the future because of our software was amazing." - Hjalti Thorarinsson, Vice President of Innova

During the opening keynote, attendees learned about where Marel intends to go next with their software and service support behind it. Hjatli Thorarinsson, Vice President of Innova, also introduced an exciting new partnership with Worximity and brought Yannick Desmarais, Founder and CEO of Worximity, on stage to talk about how the partnership can serve as a way to work together to provide better resources for our customers.

Software KnowHow Kansas City 2019

Attendees had the unique opportunity to voice their opinions and questions directly to our software experts; helping us achieve the partnership that helps us solve challenges our customers face. We provided many ways for attendees to learn more about our products, like breakout sessions covering topics like device control for some of our most used machinery, traceability, packing and distribution, label design, and data visualization. Attendees had the chance to meet and greet others over coffee breaks, catered lunches, and an excellent happy hour followed by dinner.

There were also insightful presentations from guest speakers that explored the ways our software has been put to use or relates to the current food processing industry. Bill Rimmer, Solutions Architect for Rimmer Technology Partners, Amit Morey, Professor of Poultry Science at Auburn University, and Craig Nimmo, Digital Manager at Coles in Australia, joined us as guest speakers along with Dustin Worrell, Software Consultant, speaking on behalf of MOWI Canada West.

Software KnowHow Kansas City 2019

The guest speakers talked about the decisions behind the implementation of our software into their companies’ factories, and the risks and challenges involved with that. We also heard about how the software has helped improve processes in each of them and what challenges they worked as a solution for. One factory, in particular, has utilized our software to such a degree that they only require around 12 people to run the production from start to finish.

Bill Rimmer gave us a brief introduction to HyLife foods and what they do before speaking about what led to their implementation of Innova and how they went about it. It was a great opportunity for other customers to hear about how one company had completed an Innova implementation to provide them with a realistic view of what it would look like, from costs to challenges and solutions.

Software KnowHow Kansas City 2019
Jeff Miller, Rimmer Technology Partners, Angela LeBoutillier, HyLife Foods, Tracy Ouellet, HyLife Foods, Bill Rimmer, Rimmer Technology Partners

We heard about how Auburn University is helping shape the future of the poultry industry through their poultry science department from Amit Morey. During his presentation, Morey spoke about Blockchain technology and how it can help to improve traceability. The importance of such technological advances comes in the form of preventing and correcting food recalls in a faster amount of time than many food processors are currently capable of, while also providing data throughout the entire production process.

Digital transformation and data visualization were also big topics at the Software KnowHow, with how we can start collecting data from every process and translate it into something people can easily understand and make decisions based on. It again expanded on the theme of data being capable of making processes faster, more productive, and far more reliable than they currently are.

Software KnowHow Kansas City 2019

The Software KnowHow ended with a panel of software specialists, moderated by Haraldur Gunnlaugsson, Software Marketing Manager, answering questions submitted by the audience throughout the entire event.

Questions ranged from specifics about the software capabilities, to what the future holds for the software, to what kind of content customers would like to see going forward, some of which we were happy to announce was already in the works. Attendees also participated in a poll regarding which panel they felt they gained the most from, and what they would like to see at future Software KnowHows, as well as questions about where they feel their company is at currently.

Overall, the Software KnowHow was a great success with many takeaways for both customers and Marel alike. We would like to thank everyone who participated in making this event such a great success for us and hope to see each of you at future Software KnowHows!

Access the presentation slide decks from the Software KnowHow