“Our focus is on continuous product development and on building strong relationships with our customers.” With these words, Chris Hall, Fresh Chicken Director Cargill Meats Europe, sums up the Cargill philosophy.
Ambitious expansion plan
Two years ago Cargill embarked upon an ambitious growth plan, which is being implemented over a 24 to 36 month period. The plan will allow the business to grow sustainably in line with customer demand and will see processes streamlined and brought in line. Yield, quality and food safety will all be taken to new levels.
Chris Hall continues “Our relationship with Marel goes back to the 1980s. Over this time the company has become a trusted partner. We were therefore happy to invite Marel to work with us to bring the plan to life, confident that the company would come up with the right solutions for our business.”
Breast deboning updated
The first project was completed in early 2013. This involved the upgrade of two AMF breast cap filleting systems at Cargill’s Yazor Road further processing plant and the supply of a four cell RoboBatcher.
Last year breast deboning at the Grandstand Road primary processing plant was also revamped to create capacity for more retail business. Two new AMF systems were installed, feeding product to a new four cell RoboBatcher.
All four AMF-BX systems have semiautomatic loaders and PLC controls. Chris Hall again: “We are very satisfied with the results. These have more than justified our investment. Quality and yields are up and the RoboBatchers have made us more efficient and reduced give-away.”
The second project involved the installation of two new maturation chilling systems, together capable of chilling up to 30,000 bph (500 bpm). Chris Hall explains: “Chilling carcasses correctly is absolutely critical for product quality. Our existing systems were running flat out with no room for future expansion and we wanted to be able to mature carcasses in-line. For us the answer was to install proven Marel Stork technology in a new building, giving us the space to grow.”
The two-stage systems chill and tenderize carcasses in-line with minimal weight loss. The first stage brings carcass temperature down quickly; the second stage continues the chilling process and promotes the enzyme activity necessary for efficient maturation.
New Nuova systems
The end of the year will see the installation of two 13,500 bph (225 bpm) Nuova automatic evisceration and giblet harvesting systems. Chris Hall continues: “At Cargill, product hygiene is paramount. For our new evisceration systems we have specified additional carcass washing points and our Nuova eviscerators will come equipped with a newly developed CIP system. One of the two lines will be equipped with turnable EV shackles so that our ideal layout can be achieved without any line crossovers.”
Early information by IRIS EV
For the first time ever in a UK processing plant, Marel IRIS quality assessment systems, equipped with the latest lighting and recognition software, will be installed at the end of each evisceration line. These will grade the front and the back of each carcass and its seven individual anatomic parts.
Chris Hall is really enthusiastic about this development. “Having information on the quality of each flock and carcass some three hours earlier than now will allow us to plan production so much more efficiently. We can’t wait!”
Facing the future with confidence
Chris Hall sums up: “We are very pleased with the quality and efficiency improvements we have seen so far. All of this positions us well to meet increasing demand from the marketplace for quality British chicken that consumers can trust. We look forward to completing the program and we know we can rely on Marel Stork to help us get the very best performance and value from our new equipment.”
Cargill Company profile
- Cargill provides food, agriculture, financial and industrial products and services
- Based in over 67 countries with 153,000 employees
- Processes some 2 million birds per week at plants in Hereford and Newent
- Processing facilities in the UK, France and Russia
- Cargill produces a.o. tray packed fresh chicken/chicken portions, BBQ chicken products, rotisserie, marinated chicken, coated chicken products