How Food Industries Use Hydraulic Systems

Posted on Sep 9 2016 - 5:43am by Editor

Because millions of people eat chicken in the United States, thousands of processing facilities rely on hydraulic systems. The equipment helps workers pack and ship over 37 billion pounds of poultry. Americans buy more than 80 pounds of chicken annually, so the equipment at the most profitable production plants are used heavily.

How Food Industries Use Hydraulic Systems

Basic Functions

When fresh chicken is prepped before it’s shipped to supermarkets, workers must weigh and sort all of the individual pieces. The hydraulic equipment is helpful in this situation because it automatically packages each chicken product fast and efficiently.

The Design

Most hydraulic systems have conveyor belts that are around 60 feet long. Since the belts are wide, workers can process over 100 pieces of chicken per minute. As the products move on the belts, they travel over a scale, which weighs the various pieces fairly quickly. At the end of the process, the chicken pieces drop into a dedicated work station so that they can be sorted based on a customer’s requests.

Mechanical Components

All of the handling and sorting components are powered by pneumatically systems. Some hydraulic devices that are used in busy food distribution plants have paddles that move food off the conveyors. If a system has any components that use compressed air, strategic procedures must be implemented to remove all contaminants. The most common contaminants are:

Solid particulates
Oil aerosols

Moisture can cause huge problems because it creates in ideal environment for fungus. This is why hydraulic maintenance technicians always check the piping systems for any moisture issues.

Seasoned food service employees prevent major moisture problems by adjusting the pressure level to 15 degrees or lower. When compressed air is dried at a certain pressure point, fungi can’t grow in the piping system.

Besides chicken distribution plants, there are dozens of other businesses in the food industry that use hydraulic systems. For example, beverage companies use the technology to fill dozens of water bottles each day. Because efficiency is important in a busy environment, big businesses always invest in dependable hydraulic components. Parker hydraulics are popular because they produce professional results.