The most basic thing meat processing equipment does is to make the processing of meat easier and faster. Before, all the procedures done in the meat processing requires grueling labor and lengthy time. Today, with an improved technology for meat processing equipment, preparing for food has never been made easier.
Understanding meat processing
Meat parts or food with animal origins that are processed include but are not limited to animal tissues such as the muscle meat and the fat, internal organs, blood and skins. These meat products can either be chemically or physically treated or both. These treatments are not just cutting of the meat into pieces or cooking them to make the meat edible. Meat processing also involves the following processes:
- Mixing or tumbling
- Curing or salting
- Heat treatment
- Cutting, comminuting and chopping. (Comminuting is when you reduce the size of the meat product.)
- Adding some spices
- Drying and fermentation
Types of meat processors
There are several parts of a meat processing. That is why meat processing equipment must be able to fulfill at least one of the processes mentioned above.
There are actually three scales of meat processing equipment, the small-scale like the home meat processing equipment; the medium-sized like commercial meat processing equipment that is used in meat stores; or the large-scale which is used for large meat processing operations like processed meat products manufacturers.
The following are some types of meat processing equipments:
- Meat grinder – this is a type of meat processing equipment the grinds or minces meat into very tiny, very fine bits. This is done by putting the meat or its trimmings into an auger wherein a pressure is applied through a barrel horizontally mounted on the machine. The cutting system at the end of the cylinder barrel involves rotating knives shaped like stars and discs with holes up to 13 mm as grinding plates. The size of the ground meat will depend on these holes on the discs.
There are manual and electric meat grinder types. Manual meat grinders are often small and are designed for grinding stuffed meat. Other medium sized and large scale meat grinder for commercial or manufacturing used are often electric meat grinders able to grind cartilage, fats and even some bone particles.
- Bowl Cutter – this meat processing equipment is used to chop meats often used to produce comminuted sized lean meat or its fat particles. This equipment has a revolving bowl rotating horizontally and curved knives that are rotating vertically. Bowl cutters also have thermometer to show the meat mixture temperature while it is in the machine being cut.
- Sausage stuffer or the filling machines – the main job of this meat processing equipment is to produce meat for stuffing and is often used for making sausages. These machines have cylinder container and filling nozzle to stuff sausages.
- Clipping machines – these are machines that seal sausages at its ends with the use of aluminum sealing clips. Some clipping machines are connected to the stuffer machines.
- Tumbler – this is used to process whole meat muscle or ham. This looks like the drum of a concrete mixer. This drum is rotating and makes use of steel paddles to massage the meat. The machine also makes it possible to add some phosphates and salt to treat the meat.
The popular brands in the market today
There are many types and brands of meat processing equipment for sale today. One of the most basic is the meat tenderizer in which people can easily purchase online. There are hand held tenderizers and clamp on tenderizers as well as large type meat tenderizers use for commercial purposes. Best known brands for meat tenderizers are LEM and Weston.
LEM and Weston are also known brands for manual and electric meat grinder for their ‘no scrap wasted’ feature. Weston is also famous for its meat smoker made from stainless steel. Among its wonderful features are the fully adjustable burners designed for any type of food and the locking door with cool handle which made the meat processing safer. Other popular brands selling meat processing equipment online are Fleetwood, American Eagle and TSM.