Discover how Agristo, a Belgian producer of frozen potato products, uses Factry Historian to streamline and refine its operations. With a unified data structure across four sites, Agristo has fostered a culture of continuous improvement, leading to significant gains in efficiency, reduced downtime, and an uptick in production output.

Committed to operational excellence and environmental responsibility, Agristo aims to optimise all aspects of its operations, from resource management to production efficiency and utilities consumption. This commitment underscored the need for a data collection and dashboarding solution, seeking enhanced process visibility and contextual production insights. Enter Factry Historian.

About Agristo

Established in Belgium, Agristo specialises in the production and distribution of frozen potato products. The company has a robust global presence, serving 680 clients across 145 countries and operating from 12 global sales offices. With facilities in Belgium and the Netherlands, Agristo achieved a consolidated turnover of 800 million euros in 2022, producing 850,000 tonnes of products.

Use case summary

One of Argisto's machines

Their data challenges

❌ Limited production insights

Data visualisation was confined to SCADA systems, complicating the analysis of data across different production stages, lines and equipment. The limited capabilities for trending and historical data analysis within these systems made visual process analysis a burden.

❌ Data accessibility issues

Production data was not integrated and readily accessible, requiring significant manual effort to correlate information from multiple sources and systems to achieve contextual process insights. Additionally, in the event of a complaint, quality teams had to knock with the IT department, delaying response times.

❌ Dependence on intuition

With limited visual analysis capabilities, operational decision-making was mainly based on personal intuition and experience rather than data-driven insights. This increased the risk of downtime, inconsistencies in product quality needing corrections, or a suboptimal production yield.

On Agristo’s wish list

  • Empower operators and shift leaders with customisable production dashboards, enabling data-driven decision-making, and replacing manual with automated process calculations.
  • Facilitate root cause analysis by correlating real-time and historical data across various production stages, allowing for quicker troubleshooting and a more effective resolution of process issues.
  • Establish a unified data infrastructure to enable comparative analysis across multiple sites, facilitating deeper business insights, and a more proactive approach to quality control and process optimisation.
A look into the control room

Our solution: Factry Historian

Adopting Factry Historian addressed Agristo’s data challenges head-on, enabling them to leap from basic data visualisation to advanced production analytics, and implement a unified data infrastructure across four sites.

By integrating real-time data from any source, Factry Historian offers Agristo a comprehensive view of operations. Blending seamlessly into their existing setup, it has made process data analysis frictionless, visual, and engaging.

Since implementation, it has become the single source of the truth on the production floor on each site, while the data collected with Factry Historian serves as a solid foundation for advanced business analysis in Tableau.

Factry Historian

Collect, analyse and report process data with ease

Highlighted use cases

▶ Real-time production monitoring

Previously, operators and managers depended on SCADA systems, which offered only limited insights. Accessing details about the current production status, production output and machine uptime was not user-friendly.

Under the guidance of the site’s process engineer, Agristo’s Nazareth facility has quickly become the company’s front-runner in process analysis. Grafana dashboards provide real-time visibility of critical KPIs like machine statuses, production rates, and oil usage, enabling staff to quickly address anomalies.

Additionally, these dashboards highlight key planning metrics such as actual versus target production, and using colour signals for task transitions, fostering a shift from intuition-based to data-driven decision-making. The next step is to advance the level of process analysis at other sites.

People can now engage with data, understand its meaning, and take action to enhance operations. The software is not about monitoring processes, it’s about installing a culture of learning and improvement.

Nathan Van der Eecken
Process Engineer at Agristo

▶ Root-cause analysis of process issues

By comparing real-time data with historical data, Factry Historian facilitates a deeper understanding of deviations. This helps Agristo not only address and solve current challenges but also build strategies to prevent future problems.

For instance, they were able to resolve a sporadic issue with half-filled waffles, identifying a drop in pressure during machine stops. This insight enabled the definitive resolution of this long-standing issue, enhancing quality and reducing waste. Read more examples in an interview with Agristo’s process engineer.

I'd give Factry Historian a solid 10 out of 10. If it fits your architecture, I wholeheartedly recommend it. It’s highly user-friendly, and we love its data visualisation capabilities.

Silke Govaert
Data Analyst at Agristo
One of the production lines

▶ Monitoring and analysing water usage

Factry Historian is also leveraged to monitor and analyse water consumption. Through Grafana dashboards, current water consumption is displayed in real-time, per equipment or per line. Total water consumption can be displayed over any time period, distributed over different equipment or consumers.

Other dashboards represent the distribution of water consumption over different types of water: cold, hot, and wastewater containing fats, starch, etc. With these insights, the company is able to monitor and keep track of their progress in reducing water usage, helping them reach their sustainability goals.

▶ Enabling advanced business analysis

Agristo’s BI dashboards draw data from Factry Historian and other systems to provide detailed business insights into various aspects of the production process. This allows engineers and quality teams to deeply investigate batches, analysing a variety of quality metrics.

Today, these BI dashboards are primarily used in a reactive manner, helping teams understand problems with certain batches, or to investigate downtime. However, there’s a clear push to use this data more proactively.

Behind the scenes at Agristo

Business value achieved

✔︎ Improved operational efficiency

Agristo’s staff are now leveraging data for daily decision-making on the production floor. Frictionless access to real-time and historical data enables Agristo’s teams to make quicker, more informed decisions. At the same time, it has fostered a culture of continuous improvement across sites.

Gone are the days of relying solely on experience. Now, shift leaders can make decisions based on solid data, allowing us to anticipate and tackle issues before they provoke downtime.

Nathan Van der Eecken
Process Engineer at Agristo

✔︎ Enhanced decision-making

By leveraging data from Factry Historian in BI dashboards, they are able to surface contextual insights into production trends, enhancing informed business decisions.

For instance, by integrating data from various sources and systems, such as ERP, Agristo can now visualise key aspects of the production process such as conveyor belt performance, baking parameters, ingredient quality, and unplanned downtime, identifying areas for improvement more accurately.

Factry really tunes into our needs. Whenever we face a challenge, we discuss and brainstorm solutions together. They stand out because they genuinely listen, without pushing their own agenda.

Silke Govaert
Data Analyst at Agristo

✔︎ Improved quality management

Access to historical data for quality management has significantly improved. Previously, when faced with a complaint or an audit, accessing relevant data over a longer period was cumbersome, requiring many applications. Now, the process is streamlined, enabling both quick analysis and detailed examination.

Simultaneously, the real-time monitoring of dosages helps prevent potential complaints. Notifications and alerts allow for immediate intervention – if even slight deviations are detected.

Agristo's professionals at

Future directions

Currently building the groundwork for a data-driven future, Agristo’s journey with Factry Historian continues. With the Nazareth site as inspiration, their current goal is to enhance process analysis capacities across other sites by leveraging the power of Factry Historian. Moreover, they aim to increase automation on the Nazareth site, and take on a more proactive approach to process analysis. We’re proud to be part of their ongoing journey.

The deciding factor to go with Factry was their practical approach, offering straightforward solutions without overcomplicating things. Working with the Factry team is both effective and collaborative.

Silke Govaert
Data Analyst at Agristo
Frederik Van Leeckwyck

Collect, analyse and report process data with ease

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