Researching the Cost-effectiveness of Building a State-licensed, Mobile Poultry Processing Facility as a Regional Farmers’ Group
Because pastured poultry requires minimal land, this enterprise creates possibilities for many small farmers to increase production and profitability.
Objectives: 1) To design and build a mobile, state-licensed poultry processing facility, 2) to research the cost-effectiveness of duplicating the facility and 3) to use the facility as a means of educating farmers, students and at-risk youth.
The basic unit is a van on a twin-axle bumper-style trailer. Poultry are slaughtered outside, scalded and plucked in the back of the unit and automatically moved to a processing room. This room consists of an eviscerating table, lung sink, ice water cleaning tank and cooling tanks. Feathers and entrails are composted on the producers’ farms.
Results: The unit can handle up to 75 birds per hour. Seven producers used the unit to process 1500 birds. Minor improvements will include better floor drainage and a bagging system.