Poultry Renderers get Hands-on at Seminar

By Tina Caparella

For this year’s annual educational seminar in early October, the Poultry Protein and Fat Council (PPFC) chose a new location – Kansas City, Missouri – that proved to be quite beneficial. Not only were there a record number of attendees but poultry renderers were treated to a glimpse into how several equipment companies do business.

Haarslev Inc. and Jenkins Centrifuge Company LLC provided tours of their Kansas City facilities showing how rendering and centrifuge equipment is made, serviced, and repaired. Along with a close-up view of their machine shop operation, Haarslev presented expansion plans of its service facility that will include a manufacturing plant and warehouse. Jenkins also delivered a hands-on look at their machining processes and informed renderers how best to keep centrifuges running at peak performance.

“Grease is your friend when it comes to bearings,” said Fred Turner, Jenkins’ high-speed foreman.

“I was extremely happy with Jenkins’ tour as they answered many of my questions and explained new ideas and ways other customers are extending the life of their equipment that I can utilize in the future,” stated Jeremy Lienert, maintenance manager at Protein Products Inc. “Continuous improvement is very important. When you can be sent to a seminar like this one, you put in play a great way to save money or improve your facility after listening to a presentation.”

Along with the tours, seminar attendees listened to various speakers discuss an array of topics.

Dr. Sara Cutler, Kemin Industries, addressed challenges of peroxide value testing, which is a measurement of oxidation in animal protein meals and fats. She noted that autoxidation is a chemical process that degrades the nutritional and aesthetic properties of the product, then warned that some chicken fats can oxidize further depending on the type of fat the chicken ate (i.e., vegetable versus animal).

“It’s true that chickens are what they eat,” Cutler commented. Peroxide value testing measures the hydroperoxide concentration at that point in time and does not predict the future stability of the protein or fat. In addition, test methods vary and can have a big impact on results.

“One peroxide value does not tell you a whole lot so you really need to have a quality control program in place to determine a ‘normal’ range,” Cutler stated.

Magnets are only getting part of the problem out of raw material, declared Craig Lorei, Eriez Manufacturing, since they only remove ferrous metals. A good metal program must include a metal detector in the processing line, specifically placed after a magnet. Lorei shared three types of magnets:
• ceramic, which targets medium to large tramp iron;
• rare earth, which targets small metals such as fines, shavings, rust and scale, and some work-hardened stainless steel; and
• electro, which are coils wound around a solid steel core used for their far-reaching magnetic fields with deep product burden depths.

Ceramic and rare earth metals are permanent and always activated whereas electromagnets can be switched off. Temperature can permanently destroy or kill a magnet as can physical impact, welding, and moisture, which cause rare earth to oxidize and expand.

“Safety third,” not first, is the reality among many companies, according to James Howry, Georgia Tech Research Institute. However, worker safety has come a long way since before the 1970 formation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration when 14,000 workers were killed each year. Today, that number averages about 4,800, still high. For perspective, Howry noted that since 2011, 6,831 American soldiers have died in the “war on terror” compared to 23,563 American workers who lost their lives in the workplace. Globally, more than 2.3 million workers die every year due to occupational hazards and work-related diseases.

Worker deaths and injuries in the United States cost employers plenty, averaging $1 million per death and $39,000 per disabling injury in wage and productivity losses and medical and administrative expenses. It is estimated employers pay nearly $1 billion each week for workers’ compensation insurance and $170 billion annually in costs associated with occupational injuries and illnesses. Howry pointed out that employers also suffer indirect expenses after a death or injury, such as training or replacement of employee(s), accident investigation, implementation of corrective measures, lost productivity, downtime and repair of damaged equipment and/or property, and possible rebuilding of the company’s image. He showed how companies save from $3 to $5 for every $1 spent on safety in the workplace and presented a safety-integrated process as one example of eliminating hazards.

“Every time there is an accident in your company, there is an imperfect process,” he commented.

Dr. John Ross, Marshall Institute, explained how to preserve spare parts using a military-type approach as an example of how a company can strategize to reach its goal of decreased downtime. He offered a few things to consider when establishing a preventive maintenance routine:
• Bearings lose their original lubrication internally so expected shelf life is around eight years.
• Rubber belts and hoses begin to lose their moisture content after about two years on the shelf.
• Motors lose some efficiency with each rewind, translating to increased power consumption and shortened life span.
• Hydraulic cylinders should be stored vertically to prevent slip seals from losing their integrity.
• Larger and heavier belts should be stored “figure 8” style and flat on shelving protected from direct light.

Ross also presented steps to establish programs for care of motors, gearboxes, bearings, and other materials as well as showed images of how well-organized storage systems provide a better environment for spare parts.

Bacteria in wastewater can be good, said Dr. Cliff Lange, Auburn University, while influents to the wastewater stream from raw material trailer damage, plant wash down, and condensate can be an issue to a rendering plant, according to Josh Singleton, American Proteins.

“Influents are generally high in total suspended solids, oil and grease, nitrogen, ammonia, and phosphorus,” Singleton noted. “High-temperature condensates can cause issues with mesophilic bacteria in an anaerobic lagoon.” He shared how the company’s Hanceville, Alabama, plant treats its wastewater that goes to an anaerobic lagoon before discharging to a public water treatment plant. The anaerobic lagoon is capped and creates biogas that is pumped back into the rendering plant, saving the company $270,000 annually in natural gas costs.

“Overall, be mindful what everyone is doing in the plant as it could have a dramatic effect on your wastewater,” Singleton stated.

Dr. Michele Sayles, Diamond Pet Foods, wrapped up the seminar with an overview of the Food and Drug Administration’s new sanitary transportation rule. She gave the agency credit for listening to the feed and rendering industries and general public on how to make the final rule workable. Sayles said the regulation is not intimidating, but validating a sanitation cleaning system that works is proving difficult as no water is allowed.

“Lots of ideas are being tossed around,” she remarked.

December 2017 RENDER | back