noax Industrial PCs Improve Poultry Deboning Operations

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With issues ranging from dead on arrival (DOA) units to missing hardware components, Gainco was motivated to find a better solution - noax Technologies.

noax Industrial Computers Improving Poultry Deboning Operations

noax PC configured as part of Gainco's YieldScan Rapid Frame Analyzer Equipment

When the YieldScan Rapid Frame Analyzer project began, using noax was a no-brainer.

A Gainco Product Marketing Manager weaves his way through the busy poultry processing plant on his way to the YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer demo currently being tested at a customer’s facility. When he arrives at the equipment, he is pleased to see that the freshly processed chicken carcasses needed for the Frame Analyzer demo have already been set aside. After placing the first frame on the cone, he presses a button on the noax touchscreen PC to begin the analysis. Following a bright flash from the built-in near infrared (NIR) lights and camera and a quick capture of the frame weight, the data is immediately sent to the noax industrial PC (IPC) to be processed via Gainco’s proprietary on-board software in real-time. Within moments, the results are transferred via WLAN from the noax IPC to a large enclosed HD monitor, angled towards workers in the deboning area. With a quick glance, the workers on Line 2 realize they need to improve if they want to meet their daily yield and performance targets. When the next analysis runs 40 minutes later, several of the workers on Line 2 smile as they notice they have moved to the top position. Now, the workers on Line 3 begin focusing harder on the task at hand. The YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer system is working exactly as intended.

Gainco capabilities

Innovative, forward thinking products like the YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer system are part of the reason Gainco has been able to maintain its reputation as an industry leader. Initially, Gainco was only focused on the design and manufacturing of whole bird sizing, distribution systems, and in-motion portion sizers. In 1999, Bettcher Industries, a global leader in the meat processing industry, acquired Gainco.

Bettcher offers trimming and cutting products. Thanks to Bettcher’s selective acquisition of various product lines, Gainco has been able to expand its focus. Today, the company specializes in yield management, weighing, and food safety inspection systems, including having a dedicated service and installation support which offers a variety of services ranging from scale certification, scale maintenance, and executing service contracts. noax Technologies first met Gainco at the International Production and Processing Expo (IPPE) in Atlanta, GA in early 2010. At the time, Gainco was having challenges with their computer hardware provider. With issues ranging from dead on arrival (DOA) units to missing hardware components, Gainco was motivated to find a better solution. After visiting the noax booth, Gainco decided to learn more about what noax could offer.

Maximizing yields and profits In most poultry processing operations, companies often do not realize their full yield potential due to inconsistent performance measuring methods and lack of real-time data for analysis. For many facilities, lost yield can cost upwards of half a million dollars up to several million annually depending on the size of the operation and the efficiency of their deboning lines. By introducing Gainco’s YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer system, poultry facilities can keep close tabs on their yields, helping to reduce waste, boost profits, and even improve employee morale by tying additional incentives to yield performance. Previously, yield loss was calculated by scraping and weighing leftover meat by hand, followed by pen and paper data recording. This data could take up to 24 hours to be processed and analyzed, and often incorrect data was recorded or in some cases, not at all. Now, with the noax industrial computer and YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer equipment, customers receive relevant information and insights faster several times a day. The built-in NIR-emitting lights illuminate the cone displaying the chicken frames while the camera takes a quick snapshot of the carcass. This allows for immediate implementation of corrective actions in real-time instead of after-the-fact. In addition to creating a friendly competitive environment amongst the workers on the plant floor, the YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer system offers customers the ability to gain more insight into their process, and provide a critical yardstick to align both worker and management performance and incentives. Additionally, it provides a highly necessary quality control component and helps to set appropriate standards in the employee training and onboarding process, as well as throughout the organization.

Withstanding the environment

After deciding to purchase and install a YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer system, reliability of the equipment becomes critically important for the customer in order to realize their return on investment. For this reason, Gainco uses only the highest quality equipment and components, which is why when it came time to choose an industrial computer to run the system, they turned to noax. Gainco had strict requirements when it came to choosing an industrial touchscreen computer. Specifically, they needed an IPC with the ability to withstand sanitation processes, be reliable in 24/7 operations, have enough performance to run their application, and interfaces with expandability options to be able to connect to the various components used within the YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer system. After considering different options, Gainco chose the noax S15 PC with the N11 mainboard. Featuring a protection rating of IP65 (NEMA 4), V2A stainless steel casing, 15” display, and an ideal mix of size and weight, the S15 was the perfect fit. By incorporating the S15 PC into all YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer systems, Gainco was confident that their customers would be able to effectively clean and disinfect their equipment on daily basis without fear of sacrificing long-term reliability due to water ingress or premature component failure.

Impact of Benefits

According to Gainco’s Product Development Manager, “We’ve had no issues with the noax hardware. When the YieldScan™ Rapid Frame Analyzer project began, using noax was a no-brainer.” He added, “I’m a quality guy; I go for higher quality hardware compared to our competitors. Price isn’t an issue, especially if our equipment is going to be in a foreign country where we can’t provide immediate support.” Since 2010, and with over 30 units sold, Gainco has not experienced any issues to date with the noax IPCs. By incorporating the easy-to-use and intuitive noax S15 industrial computers into their deboning equipment, Gainco and their customers have realized the benefits when it comes to monitoring and improving poultry yields and profits. From real-time data display to immediate course of actions plans, plant floor operators can depend on noax.

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Lindsay Ackman

Anita Geßner
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