Meat and Poultry Processing / Chicken / Turkey
Protein Problem Solver

Protein Problem Solver: Detection, grading systems help produce superior boneless poultry

June 14, 2014

Boscher Volailles is a French poultry slaughtering and deboning plant built in 2008, that is part of the Glon group. All Boscher Volailles customers are industrial processors involved in further-processing products and the catering and fast-food markets. The company processes about 550,000 birds per week, specializing in heavy birds.

“We are more expensive than our competitors, but our customers recognize the value of food safety,” explains Thierry Le Morvan, manager of Boscher Volailles who is responsible for three other poultry plants in the group. “It’s a daily challenge, but I think we are one of the best regarding quality and food safety, especially with regard to bones — and that’s one of the reasons why our customers buy our product.”

As a poultry processor, Boscher Volailles needs to meet ever-increasing demands for quality and food safety. Today it is simply not acceptable to deliver poultry products with potentially hazardous bone fragments, and the SensorX has become a standard part of high-quality deboning. Only accurate, reliable bone detection can ensure food quality and safety. Boscher Volailles processes fillets, inner fillets, whole leg meat and thigh meat, and 100 percent of the deboned product is run through SensorX.

“As soon as SensorX was available in the market, we bought it, to secure our leading position with product quality, and to be the first,” explains Le Morvan. Boscher Volailles has seven SensorX systems running at its plant. The first was installed in 2007 and the latest in November 2013.

Boscher Volailles also has installed a SensorX SmartSort solution on two of its production lines, both to generate batches for quality inspection and to divert fillets of a certain size to two Marel TSM portioning machines. With the SmartSort solution, SensorX now calculates product weight using X-ray technology, in addition to bone detection. The SmartSort is a compact grading unit positioned after the SensorX that diverts product to a crate, box or conveyor, depending on the weight information from the SensorX. This setup simplifies size grading, simple batching and directing of product to different applications, and it eliminates the need for a dynamic weighing unit.

“In the beginning, we had to install a weighing unit after the SensorX to measure the yield and to distribute fillets to the TSM machines,” Le Morvan says. “Now we have a line that does all that without the weighing unit, because we use the SensorX SmartSort solution.”

Le Morvan continues: “There are fewer machines; it’s more compact; there’s more space, less maintenance and less spare parts — all these are benefits for our operation.”

With the SensorX as part of Boscher Volailles’ system, volume has increased every year, which has helped the company offer the best product at a lower cost to its customers, according to Le Morvan.

“It is a big evolution, because now we have nearly doubled the speed, and doubled the birds per hour, and we have about 50 percent less people,” he says.

In addition to the SensorX and SmartSort solutions, Boscher Volailles makes use of Innova, Marel’s production management software, which gives it the most effective processing control of its SensorX systems.

“We use Innova every day to monitor quality,” says Le Morvan. “We constantly strive for fewer bone complaints, and the SensorX makes it possible for us to be more relaxed, and it helps our people to monitor and improve the process.”


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