Beer With A Good Head On Its Shoulders

When I. Patricia Henry took over as manager of Miller Brewing Co.'s sprawling plant in Eden, N.C., five years ago, she had a huge job ahead of her. The plant's 700-foot beer-packaging lines often churned out too much brew because operators didn't always get order changes from production schedulers in time. Sometimes, the plant had to throw away thousands of gallons of beer. The culprit? Instructions, written on paper, that were lost or written incorrectly. And if a line stopped, its massive size kept operators from seeing what was wrong, slowing fixes.

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