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Further development of the Macpro Exos lamb loin deboning maching to remove the chine from racks as well as remove tenderloin fillets

Project start date: 01 November 2012
Project end date: 31 December 2013
Publication date: 01 December 2013
Livestock species: Lamb
Relevant regions: National
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Summary

Background
The lamb mid-section or barrel includes the most valuable cuts and some of the least valuable cuts.  Significant value can be created by more precisely separating the various cuts; rib rack, flap, loin.  
This is one of several initatives in developing semi-automated solutions, whereby products are presented to the machine by hand for automated cutting, which provides for lower capital cost equipment. These options were compared under a chining comparison CBA project (A.TEC.0104).
Research
Project P.PIP.0345 funded further development and trials of the Macpro EXOS lamb loin deboning machine to remove the chine from racks as well as remove tenderloin fillets.
The prototype machine was installed, initially off-line for initial commissioning, then moved to the boning room.  The loin fillet removal module showed good potential but significant work is required to achieve complete tenderloin extraction.  The loin (striploin) boning operation showed very consistent, high yield results and a rate of 8/minute on the first morning of training an operator.  The rack chine removal module showed very consistent, high yield results.  The multi-function operation where loins and racks are processed alternately was commissioned successfully, without the need for any blade changes.
Outcomes
This development from a long standing industry technical innovator delivered a high yielding semi-automated solution in a flexible machine which also provided options to extract the chine or vertebrae, and tenderloin fillet removal. Semi-automated machines are often cost effective, and offer a tight floor print important on many tight boning room floors.
Macpro has a distribution agreement with Food Processing Equipment Pty Ltd who will promote, sell and service the technology to the industry.

More information

Project manager: Darryl Heidke
Primary researcher: Macpro