According to RSM’s survey of nearly 350 middle market C-level food and beverage industry executives, more than half of respondents agreed that acquisitions or joint ventures and new products are the best ways to grow sales over the next 12 months. However, 35 percent indicated that these companies’ abilities to respond to changing consumer trends will negatively affect profitability. The survey also revealed how these executives feel about technology, especially the Internet of Things (IoT). While 22 percent of respondents indicated they are not planning IoT strategies because of the expense, 43 percent of those surveyed will implement IoT to reduce costs. And overall, 68 percent of companies included in the survey plan to increase technology investments over 12 months.

As many industries have learned in recent years, improving efficiency can help greatly improve profitability. As the food and beverage industry moves toward implementing more technologies such as IoT, companies will likely benefit from more effective maintenance programs, less downtime, greater insights for actionable data and more.

This issue focuses on food and beverage to help you reap the benefits from the industry’s potential growth in 2018. ARO and SKF¬†present our cover series articles on diaphragm pumps and proper lubrication in food and beverage applications.

Corrosion monitoring is important in every industry. Emerson outlines condition monitoring for these systems in our special report. Next, Blackmer’s article discusses positive displacement pumps in chemical transfer applications, followed by part two of Amin Almasi’s article on flare gas systems.

I hope 2018 is off to a great start for you. As you make your travel plans for the year, reserve your spot at our inaugural Flow Forum conference in Rosemount, Illinois. In addition to a tabletop exhibition, our program includes sessions on filtration; flow, level, pressure and temperature measurement; pumps systems; valves and actuators; digital transformation and the Industrial Internet of Things. Visit flowforum2018.com for more information and to register.