Customer story

New deboning & trimming system at Slaney

01 Jul 2016

Irish meat processor Slaney Foods International consistently reinvests in its facilities and processes to optimize production capabilities and to reaffirm its commitment to innovation and operational excellence.
 

Designing a New Boning Hall

At Slaney Foods, they know just how important efficient production and inventory control systems are to their business. In 2010, Slaney Foods invested in the installation of a complete StreamLine system in their beef boning and trimming hall.

Today, their use of technology systems makes their boning hall one of the most modern and innovative facilities in Ireland.

“Our previous system offered no centralized management control, had poor traceability features, and often led to problems,” Factory Manager Leslie Warren explains.

We worked with Marel to design a leading edge boning hall processing system. With this system it is easier for us to monitor our key performance indicators (KPIs) such as yield, throughput, quality, capacity, and labor efficiency, in real production time, as well as ensure conformity to quality and food safety standards.

- Leslie Warren, Factory Manager
 

“To be able to supply our customers with safe, high quality product, we needed to have a system which keeps track of stock and product movement throughout the whole processing chain. With food safety a greater concern than ever before, an effective traceability system is critical for us,” adds Leslie Warren.
 

Automation that Delivers Results

On entering the deboning hall at Slaney Foods, one can immediately see the efficiency and effectiveness with which this system runs. The StreamLine deboning and trimmingsystem has been in place for the past four years and has helped the company to increase throughput by 10 to 15%. Leslie Warren cites two main reasons for this increase:

  • The system is ergonomically designed, with cuts automatically delivered straight to and from the operator.
  • The system is an effective management tool with individual operators monitored on yield and throughput.

“With the StreamLine system, we have had major gains by not over-trimming the primal cuts. This increases the value of the meat cuts,” Leslie Warren explains. “The StreamLine system is very flexible,” adds Hall Production Manager, John Harris. “One benefit is that we can easily change over from one lot to another in production and still keep traceability.

We constantly extract processing data from the system and work with it to optimize our production processes. All line supervisors can effectively and easily monitor production.”
 

How Does it Work?

Carcass quarters from stock are weighed into the deboning hall and information about each animal is captured by the Innova StreamLine module.

The carcasses are then cut down according to individual specifications and weighed as they enter the StreamLine for deboning and trimming.

Primals from the break down line are distributed to work stations on the StreamLine, based on operator availability, and are de-boned, trimmed, and skinned according to individual specifications. All cuts to and from each station are fully traceable throughout the production process. This optimizes efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and client satisfaction.
 

Technology for the Future

Slaney Foods undertook thorough preparation and market analysis prior to investing in this state of the art StreamLine system. This investment has ensured that the company got the results it was looking for: transparency, increased productivity, traceability, and operational excellence guaranteeing the supply of premium quality Irish beef to their vast array of customers worldwide.

“I believe there is a huge need in the industry for efficiency and for maintaining and increasing quality,” says Leslie Warren. “Automation is the way to go and I would encourage anybody thinking of investing in their processing facility to look at the future possibilities of product developments and consumer trends, and spend time to tailor the system to what they truly want to do with it.”
 

The StreamLine System

The StreamLine deboning and trimming system – such as the one at Slaney Foods – is an intelligent and flexible system for monitoring, analyzing, and maximizing the deboning hall production. With the system, all data relating to the entire cutting and deboning process can be collected and analyzed with Innova software, giving a full overview of yield figures, throughput, and quality, even at the individual operator level. This makes it easy to monitor the meat and see where the process is working efficiently or inefficiently – in other words, what is adding to or detracting from your operation’s profits.

The system is tailored to individual production needs, and experience has shown that the payback time can be as little as 12 months. Capacities for deboning facilities start at around 10 head of beef and 20 head of pork per hour – and for PAD production the capacity would start at around 500 kg per hour. Functions such as skinning, sawing, meat harvesting, trim management, and fat analysis can be integrated into the StreamLine system set-up – and the line flow can cover additional functions such as labeling, packing, and freezing. This makes the StreamLine system a full deboning hall solution from carcass intake to product dispatch.
 

Innova for StreamLine

Innova Software Solutions are an essential part of the StreamLine deboning and trimming hall system. Innova offers total factory control from receipt of live animals through slaughter, processing, packaging, and dispatch.
 

Traceability on Every Primal

To enable identification by carcass and lot, labels are added to each primal leaving a processing area – such as deboning, trimming, and packing.
 

Real-Time Instructions

Each operator receives instructions on a compact terminal mounted in front of them at the deboning and trimming stations. Innova automatically selects cutting tasks to be executed based on real-time information about production-dependent parameters such as carcass quality and specifications, active production orders, and order priority. This ensures optimal cuts and utilization every time.
 

Monitoring Yield, Throughput, and Performance

Standard yield and throughput results are stored in the system for all tasks. Operators are monitored on their performance in real time.
 

About the Company

Slaney Foods International (SFI) is a beef processing business located in the heart of the Slaney Valley, one of Ireland’s prime farming regions. It combines best quality Irish Beef with ultra-modern processing facilities to offer a superb product range. Slaney Foods, along with Irelands leading lamb processor Irish Country Meats, form part of the Linden Food Group, which also includes Linden Foods in Dungannon, Co. Tyrone, a leading lamb and beef processor.

Established as a family business in 1970, SFI prides itself on its reputation for sourcing and producing only the highest quality Irish beef; this is why Slaney Foods are recognized as The Beef Specialists. The supply of premium carcass and primal cuts of beef is its core business, and the company has developed strong and successful long-term relationships with premium customers including leading supermarket chains, the food service, and food manufacturing industry. The company currently employs approximately 350 people on its site at Ryland Lower, Bunclody, Co. Wexford in Ireland.

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