Automated System for Frozen Chickens

One of our customers asked us to provide the material handling solutions to this demanding situation.

A large national processor of chicken and chicken products had a regional plant that was too small and required the movement by hand of the packaged chicken and pieces. The plant was not able to keep up with demand for retrieving the packaged chicken, weighing each package, labeling each package and then shipping it via refrigerated truck to regional grocery chains. This method of handling and retrieving caused a high percentage of shipping errors and excessive labor costs.

How did we handle this situation?

Lauyans & Company provided material handling equipment to convey stacked trays of packaged chicken throughout a new, state-of-the-art warehouse. The material handling equipment was required to interface with:

  • a minus 40 degree F blast freezer
  • an AS/RS system
  • a weigh/price/label/package system
  • a final packaging system prior to loading into trucks

In addition to the extreme temperatures near the blast freezer, the remaining equipment had to function in +20 degree F. temperatures. Lauyans used both electric and hydraulic actuators to power this automated equipment.

The plant had to be able to maintain normal production, often on an overtime basis. The installation of the new equipment was step-phased during weekends when the plant was not processing product. The combined new/old system had to be up and running when employees arrived for work on each Monday morning.

What was note-worthy about our successful completion of the project?

  • The plant never failed to restart on time after an installation phase.
  • All equipment worked as designed.
  • The original system was manual. The most significant issue with the new equipment was teaching the plant’s employees to operate “hands off” to allow the equipment to do its job as designed and engineered by Lauyans.
  • The reliability, quality and cost savings of the equipment providedl ed the customer to use Lauyans & Company for the next automation project at a different facility.

Does your company face a similar situation that requires special
expertise? Contact us today!