News Post

New Belgium Brewery Recipe Manager by Jake, Tuesday, January 29, 2013.

New Belgium Brewery Recipe Manager

We are super excited about a project we recently wrapped up for Apex Manufacturing Solutions and their client, New Belgium Brewery.

Our tasks were to create a completely web based recipe management system that integrates with their ERP system as well as their plant floor HMI system, allowing brew masters to configure and build recipes with ultimate precision.

Through the system, users can configure equipment, equipment and recipe parameters, materials, material attributes, flavors, recipes, etc.

Along with the standard functionality of a recipe management system, New Belgium had some unique requests. One in particular was to authenticate against active directory groups. So we built a system that pulls in Active Directory groups and allows the administrator to map those groups to internal roles in the application. This allows security to be managed at the domain controller level.

Another cool feature we implemented is the ability to view and apply batch recipe parameter value changes to a recipe parameter type across all recipes. For example, recipe parameters are configured independently from a recipe. When the recipe is built, the admin chooses which parameters should be included in a particular recipe. These parameters can be used on multiple recipes within an equipment area. So by selecting any recipe parameter in a recipe will bring up a form with all parameter values of that parameter type across all recipes and allow the user to apply calculations and batch changes. Very powerful feature!

New Belgium had a unique request to add functionality to allow brew masters to select a parameter value definition from a pre-defined set of values. They call them buckets and we renamed them Phases. Essentially a "bucket" or Phase is created which holds multiple parameters. This phase may be called "fast", another called "slow", etc. Each Phase can hold an unlimited number of parameters. Once the phase is mapped to the recipe, the user can pick which Phase is to be used.

I could go on and on but you get the point. Ultimately we were able to build a unique solution that fits their needs. We are looking forward to our next recipe manager project. Special thanks to Apex Manufacturing Solutions for bringing us in on the project!

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