Dark meat: The deboning option
If your operation debones whole legs, there are two key factors that make or break
any operation: throughput and yield. BY MARK EYSTAD
At the time this article is being writ-
ten there is a U.S. delegation in Russia
attempting to bring about an end to a
ban on U.S. poultry products chilled in
chlorinated water. The outcome of this
meeting will surely have an industry-
changing impact. The big question
always comes back to what should
poultry processing operations do with
up to 45% of their product mix? This
also brings up an important question,
“Should companies be deboning dark
Deboning the back half — beyond
what occurs in whole-bird deboning
operations — has become an increas-
ing topic of discussion lately. If your
operation decides to debone whole legs,
there are two key factors that make or
Whole leg pounds per man hour vs whole leg yeild%
More often than not pounds per man-hour and yield go hand in hand due in large part to the
incoming quality of the whole legs.
Ideas for keeping cooking operations
profitable are online in “Cooking with the data” at www.
break any operation: throughput (pounds
per man-hour) and yield.
There are two main methods to accomplish the deboning of whole legs, the
;rst being manually. Since most manual
operations pay incentives, it is important
to tie the incentives to both throughput and yield. It is also critical to design the process so individual metrics for deboners are
closely monitored. The largest drawback to this method is the
expense associated with the constant training required due to
consistently high turnover rates.
Proper cutting of drum tendons improves yield.
There are several types of mechanical deboning equipment
on the market. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. The
early types of mechanical thigh deboning machines pushed the
thigh bones through rubber diaphragms. This type was simple
enough to operate, but often broke the bones as they were pushed
through the diaphragm. This caused excessive trimming and
added to the risk of leaving bone pieces in the meat.