Pet Food Processing / Pet Food Extrusion / Pet Food Equipment
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on December 15, 2017

The future of pet food processing: adaptive technologies

Drying and cooling equipment suppliers must provide solutions for the complex pet food diets today’s manufacturers are producing.

The demands of making pet food have always been complex, but never more so than today. As “unique” diets (such as high meat or grain free) take over production lines, the equipment must be able to keep up with a whole new set of processing demands.

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High-meat, no-grain pet diets really process quite differently than traditional formulas,” said Robert Sunderland, director of dryer technology for Wenger Manufacturing Inc. “This does not seem to be a quick trend — I think it’s the wave of the future. The industry seems to have decoupled itself from commodity-based pricing to very specific recipes, and I think the factories that we supply equipment to are recognizing it or wanting to move into those higher value-added products.”

Adaptive technologies meet the demands of pet food processing

According to the industry, it is no longer enough for dryers to dry and coolers to cool. All equipment must be prepared to do multiple jobs, and do them well, to accommodate today’s pet food formulations.

“The demands for smart and adjustable solutions adding a new layer of versatility and increasing the final product quality are gaining in importance, and are the latest trend in industrial technology development,” said Markus Wied Dethlefsen, senior process engineer, technology and business development for Graintec. “A technological step forward to coolers that not only cool and dryers that are doing more than just drying [is necessary]. Imagine if coolers and dryers know your product that well — not just today, not only one recipe, but can adjust the cooling and drying to provide optimal product handling and ensure the best possible final pet food quality obtainable for every run.”

Optimizing production while meeting the needs of pet food manufacturers is a continuous challenge, but one that the industry has stepped up to meet.

“Process optimization technologies have come quite a long way,” said Nick Manley, marketing communications manager for Bühler Aeroglide.

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