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VacCAT: delivering consistency and efficiency to the protein industry

Of all the success stories in the JBT product line, the VacCAT Product Metering System is one of the most proven and effective. Produced by Russellville, Arkansas-based JBT CAT, the VacCAT is notable for being one of the most reliable and consistent protein feed and metering systems on the market; an assertion that is more than a mere boast.

The VacCAT can be attached to virtually any system and line, ranging from injectors and freezers to fryers and breading systems, and is designed to maximize the pounds per hour throughput with consistency and efficiency.

“The VacCAT ensures uniform feeding and metering of some of the most challenging food products, whether it’s raw poultry, meat, heavily-glazed and sticky chicken wings to highly-marinated tenders,” says JBT CAT Weighing Division Product Manager Paul Combs.

Key features
One of VacCAT’s key features is metering by weight, which Combs says has proven to be more efficient and effective compared to other systems using time functions or other methods to control product distribution.


The JBT VacCAT can be attached to virtually any system and line

Another major benefit, he continues, is the VacCAT’s ability to minimize product damage through gentle product handling. Although still pumped at high capacity, the system uses lower pump speeds compared to other vacuum methods to preserve optimum product quality.

The vacuum pumps are also sized according to customer need and can be integrated with any upstream marination device, reducing the line set-up time and increasing uptime. 

Selected production capacity is also adjusted automatically to reflect the production reality through JBT’s patented weighing system and self adjusting software, while the batch dump rate is calculated and adhered to throughout the production run, transforming an alternating batch process into a continuous product flow. 

The VacCAT and other CAT systems are backed by expert training and system support, while optional ProCARE agreements additionally offer real-time analysis, reporting and preventative maintenance. 

Find out more about JBT CAT’s full range of products

XVision: the art of pinpointing contaminants


Contaminants in processed meat products – whether they be metal filings, pieces of glass or even simple chunks of bone – are not only upsetting to end consumers, they can also lead to costly product recalls and even risk ruining reputations.

Ensuring – as far as possible – that such situations do not arise at busy processing facilities has been a key objective behind the creation, and subsequent success, of XVision, an ingenious JBT system that helps overcome many of the common pitfalls associated with scanning for contaminants.

Dino Carbone, Division Product Manager – JBT XVision, explains that the system is typically used for raw and packaged protein products, including raw incoming poultry, ground meat, hotdog sausages, tray products, ready-to-eat products, pork, and bacon, among many others.

“XVision looks for contaminants introduced during the production process, as well as bone,” he says. “Typical contaminants include basic metals – stainless steel, ferrous and non-ferrous metals – but x-rays can also detect glass, bone, and dense rubbers that you see in many types of steels and gasketing.”


High sensitivity
JBT counts one of the largest food production companies in the world among its XVision customers; a company which uses some 20 XVision machines to inspect meat at its ground beef plant. XVision is also used by many leading processors in the pork sector for ham, bacon and raw pork products, while the system is gaining increasing traction in the poultry sector, scanning raw bulk poultry for bone as well as contaminants.

“One of the advantages of our machine is it can look for bone and contaminants at the same high sensitivity,” says Carbone. “Whereas most other machines lose their sensitivity to other contaminants if they are looking for bone, our machine can be tuned for both, and do both equally well.”

Another feature that has proven popular among customers is XVision’s ease-of-maintenance, even in challenging conditions. “What our customers really like about our equipment is our internal modules and their plug-and-play design, which allows local personnel to keep the unit maintained in a very cost-effective way,” continues Carbone. “They also like the fact that the machine has been designed to operate in a wet production environment. Not many machines can survive in wet production, high pressure conditions, but our machine can.”

Already available in North America, XVision will be launching in Europe and Asia in late 2018-early 2019. 

CLICK to learn more about XVision

PRoCARE: the benefits of preventative maintenance

PRoCARE® is perhaps one of the most innovative and certainly among the most valued services that JBT offers. An aftermarket initiative that has been running for over a decade, PRoCARE has been developed to help make sure JBT systems and equipment are kept in optimum conditions and any downtime – in the form of costly system failures – are kept to a minimum.

“What we do is offer the customer piece of mind by taking care of the equipment we manufacture,” explains JBT Customer Care Manager Elizabeth Monasterio. “We go to the customer’s site and inspect the equipment, they receive an inspection protocol and also a service report on the visit with written recommendations. Based on that the customer may or may not have to do some repairs and we follow up to make sure they do what needs to be done.”


Visits can vary from twice to four times a year, but in the case of the most sophisticated equipment, JBT technicians visit every month for four days on average, checking the equipment, calibrating and changing any parts that need attention.

Covering across JBT’s protein portfolio, JBT PRoCARE works with customers from bakery and pizza producers to manufacturers of ready meals and chicken, meat, fish and frozen vegetable processors offering a flexible program dependent on customer needs.

“We make PRoCARE flexible to customers’ needs,” says Monasterio. “On Gyrocompact freezers, we offer an Extended prorated warranty on the belt, chains and rails.  Level One offers inspections and a minimum eight hours training a year, while Level Two includes spare parts, typically in the form of a yearly package with parts stored on site. As well as a discount on original spare parts, PRoCARE also offers a discounted rate for customers for emergency service repairs.”


However, one of the most important services JBT PRoCARE provides is preventative maintenance, which allows customers to control costs by taking care of equipment before it is damaged. “When equipment goes down in a plant, it’s the worst thing that can happen because you start losing production,” says Monasterio. “Preventative maintenance removes the risks of things like that happening and having to call for an emergency service, which normally involves rushing a technician out to a customer, often from an installation.”

“What customers have told us many times is it ensures a good night’s sleep,” she adds.


European success story set for North American debut

A design conceived in Europe and finalized in the US that combines the best elements of JBT’s existing oven range with advances in capacity and efficiency will be launched in the North American market later this year, following a successful roll-out in Europe and Asia. JBT’s Stein TwinDrum Spiral Oven builds on the successes of the established GYRoCOMPACT oven, but adds efficient two-zone spiral cooking for high capacity applications providing uniform temperature and excellent roasting capabilities.

Consistent performance and maximum throughput have long been the watchwords of JBT’s cooking range, according to JBT’s Division Product Manager for Cooking, David Harrison, who explains that the TwinDrum will complement existing products and systems. 

JBT Stein TwinDrum Oven

JBT’s cooking portfolio can be split into two categories – linear ovens for high velocity impingement style cooking; and high capacity, forced air convection spiral ovens. 

Primarily sold in North America, the Stein JSO-C and JSO-III/IV Jet Stream Ovens use thermal fluid, indirect gas, and open flame heating with precise humidity control for both coated and roasted products.

TwinDrum launch
The newest addition to the cooking range is the Stein TwinDrum Spiral Oven; a system that is set to build on the achievements of the Stein GCO II GYRoCOMPACT, the highest volume spiral oven in the market. The GCO-II uses the innovative self-stacking FRIGoBELT conveyor system and can be used for products including poultry (wings, breast, breaded, pan-fried, nuggets, patties); and pork and beef (patties and links).


The Stein TwinDrum Spiral Oven adds to the innovations of the GYRoCOMPACT by incorporating two-zone spiral cooking with an architecture that uniquely distributes the air flow to the food items on the belt for providing uniform and consistent treatment  with respect to airspeeds, temperatures and humidity across all tiers. The specific operating parameters can be independently controlled for each zone to suit a desired application. 

Incorporating experience from Stein, Double D, and Frigoscandia, the design was developed in Sweden and completed in the US. The TwinDrum will move from a 600mm capacity for its initial launch in Europe and Asia to 1000mm for primarily North America to enable handling of greater product volumes.

“The TwinDrum was launched from Sweden and has hit the ground running,” adds Harrison. “25 units have already been sold in Asia and Europe, and following that success we are rolling it out in the North American market with much larger capacity demands”

Click here to learn more about the Stein TwinDrum Spiral Oven

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