Marel and Yunken create smart processes together

A strategic cooperation for a win-win situation

Arie Manuel Changchun Yunken

After the Yunken Group decided to work with Marel in upgrading its poultry processing facilities to smart factories, the first project was the 13,500 bph [225 bpm] automated evisceration and giblet harvesting line in its Changchun plant. This was installed and commissioned earlier in 2020 and is now running smoothly. The second project involves the new Yingkou plant. This has a similar but more extensive dual-line configuration.

At the time of the first meetings between Marel and Yunken, broiler processing automation in the Northeast of China was not widespread and manual production lines were still the norm. The Yunken Group is aware that automation is the future. It therefore plans to gradually upgrade and convert all its manual broiler processing lines into automated processing lines. The Yunken Changchun plant was to be the first pilot project.

Performance and quality compared

“We investigated in depth and in detail, communicating and discussing with others in our industry. We compared equipment performance and the quality of products made with it. Having learned about the comprehensive advantages offered by Marel poultry processing solutions, we finally chose to cooperate with Marel. We decided to start by upgrading the existing manual line in the Yunken Changchun plant to a 13,500 bph [225 bpm] production line including automatic evisceration and giblet harvesting,” says Mr. Zhao Xiaoguang, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Yunken Group. In the meantime, the line was installed and commissioned earlier this year. Everything went smoothly, although Covid-19 meant that Marel’s Chinese engineering team had to operate independently without the on-site support from Marel experts from abroad. They were not able to visit China due to travel restrictions. In the end, successful commissioning happened even sooner than expected.

Nuova Viscera Packs


In October 2019, Chairman Zhao led a top management delegation from the Yunken Group on a visit to Marel’s poultry headquarters in the Netherlands. During the meeting, Chairman Zhao had extensive conversations with Arie Tulp, Global Sales Director Marel Poultry. “We fully acknowledge Marel’s strength in terms of its equipment, technology and service, as well as the company's philosophy of developing together with customers. We appreciate Marel’s commitment and sincerity towards both the Chinese market and its Chinese customers. We are therefore pleased to establish a long-term strategic partnership. Marel and the Yunken Group will keep cooperating to achieve a win-win situation for both parties in future development,” says Chairman Zhao.

Automated giblet harvesting

Giblets are a very valuable product in China, as they are often used in traditional Chinese recipes. Careful giblet harvesting is therefore extremely important. Until now, Yunken Changsun has harvested giblets manually. With the upgrade to automated lines, their giblet harvesting systems now feature the full package. This comprises automatic intestine and gall bladder removal, automatic liver and gizzard harvesting and automatic heart/lung separation. Yunken Changsun has Marel’s assurance that the automated solutions will give a more consistent process with less workforce needed.

Yingkou, the second project

The second project in the cooperation between the Yunken group and Marel is currently underway. This involves the new Yingkou plant and features two automated evisceration and giblet harvesting lines, both running at a capacity of 12,500 bph [208 bpm]. Complete ACM-NT cut-up and intelligent AMF-i deboning processes are also to be installed at Yingkou, scheduled to be commissioned this year.

Evisceration Giblet Handling

About the Yunken Group

The parent company Shenyang Yunken Animal Husbandry was founded in 1984 and has its headquarters in Sujiatun District, Shenyang City. After 36 years of development, the group has grown into a comprehensive integrated industrial enterprise including breeding, hatching, feed production, technical services, organic fertilizer production, broiler processing, food processing, logistics and distribution. In 2019, the annual revenue of the Yunken Group was 7 billion yuan with an annual slaughtering capacity of 250 million broilers. It has 33 subsidiaries and more than 7,000 employees and production bases in the three northeastern provinces. Its products are sold to 31 provinces and cities across China. The Yunken Group is a national ‘key leading enterprise’ and its broiler brand ‘Yunken Fresh Chicken’ has been awarded the honorary title of ‘Chinese Famous Brand Agricultural Products’ by the State Ministry of Agriculture.

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