5 ways in which Marel helps save water

How to increase sustainability in a poultry processing plant?

Moistener Spray Cabinet For Air Chilling Tunnel Nozzle

In today’s rapidly warming climate, it is clear that water is a vital life-sustaining resource. It makes sense to consider water use in an industrial environment not only in terms of economic gain, but also from an environmental perspective. A typical processing plant uses water to scald, chill and wash the product, to transport waste and to both clean and lubricate processing equipment. Processing plants everywhere are always looking for ways of reducing water consumption, particularly in areas where water is scarce.

Poultry’s water usage footprint is smaller than that for any other mass-consumed meat. Generally, water consumption in a processing plant ranges from 12 to 18 liters per bird. Much, however, depends on capacity, infrastructure and the technology used. By adopting the very latest Marel water-saving techniques including the re-use, where possible, of treated wastewater, a suitably equipped high-speed plant can get this figure as low as 7 liters per bird.
Marel continues to look for ways of reducing water use still further, part of the company’s sincere commitment to improving the long-term sustainability of poultry processing.

Below we list five possibilities, given in process order.

ATLAS Smartstack Washing

1. SmartStack – cleaner with less

Among the Marel priorities when designing the SmartStack transport modules of the ATLAS live bird handling system, were that it should be easy to clean thoroughly, that the system developed to clean it should use water effectively.
The module, which consists of a variable number of self-nesting trays, has no frame to wash. The trays themselves have no blind spots, while the automatic washing system boasts clever nozzle design and positioning, ensuring extremely economical water use.
Marel has substantially reduced the risk of cross-contamination between flocks and has done this sustainably.

Aeroscalder Infeed

2. Humidified air, not water

Traditional immersion scalding uses a lot of water. Before processing can start, scalding systems must be full of water heated to the appropriate temperature. During the process, each carcass takes some water with it, which must then be made up.
Marel's AeroScalder uses humidified air, not water, to transfer heat to the feather follicles cutting water usage by up to 75%.
In the de-feathering department, Marel keeps a keen eye on water consumption. Water is necessary to help wash down feathers from each carcass. Water is also necessary for lubricating plucking fingers. It is therefore only logical that water should also be used to transport feathers to the feather collection area. Marel keeps water usage to a minimum by ensuring a tightly closed circuit. This solution recirculates as much water as possible with as little as possible going to waste.

Evisceration Cleaning

3. Clever carrousel design

A typical automatic evisceration department contains a number of carrousel machines, which must be thoroughly washed down at the end of each shift. Water usage is not the only important consideration here. Many processing plants now work virtually round the clock, leaving ever less time for hygiening between shifts.
When designing its carrousel machines, Marel has given a lot of thought to speed and ease of cleaning. Today’s carrousel machines are now of open construction with oblique surfaces and no blind spots. Cleaning them thoroughly is an operation now done quickly and efficiently.
Marel offers closed vacuum transport systems for the dry removal of all evisceration room waste.

Downflow Plus Air Chilling

4. Chilling with air

Where immersion chilling is the norm in a given market, the process unavoidably uses a lot of water. The chilling system must be full of water chilled by flake ice or ice water. National regulations usually dictate how much water must overflow per carcass.
Air chilling uses little and sometimes no water at all. The decision to move from immersion chilling in water to air chilling is, however, a marketing one. Europe made the transition decades ago; the USA still largely chills in water.
Air chilling uses water sprays to prevent yield loss from excessive dry-out and to influence product taste and presentation.
Marel DownFlow Plus technology allows complete control of the amount of water used. Misting cabinets located at chosen points in the chilling process apply a thin layer of water to internal or external surfaces. Plant management can switch these on or off at will, depending on the characteristics required for the final product.

Water Treatment Qatar Mazzraty Pre Treatment

5. Water Treatment

Marel Water Treatment can supply all equipment to treat all effluent from a poultry processing plant to whatever level local requirements demand.
The company offers primary, secondary and tertiary treatment as well as sludge treatment systems. These systems allow processors to meet all regulatory requirements.
Once treated, it is now safe to discharge effluent into sewer, surface water or the local river, even to use it for crop irrigation.
Possibly the best solution of all is to recycle this water for use in the processing plant itself. This replaces the need for a feed of fresh water and reduces the plant’s water usage footprint, a win-win solution for both processor and the environment alike.


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