2013 National Safety Conference for the Poultry Industry
August 19 - 21, 2013
Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, Amelia Island, Florida
The Agricultural Technology Research Program (ATRP) at the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) and U.S. Poultry & Egg Association (USPOULTRY) are excited to announce a new partnership for jointly hosting the National Safety Conference for the Poultry Industry, with additional support provided by the Georgia Poultry Federation, the National Chicken Council, and the National Turkey Federation – who, along with GTRI, were founding sponsors of the conference.
ATRP is now on Facebook
GTRI’s Agricultural Technology Research Program (ATRP) is now on Facebook, featuring information about exciting research initiatives underway, interesting poultry and food industry news, industry events, photos, videos, and more! We invite you to become a fan by clicking the “like” button on our page — www.facebook.com/ATRP.GTRI
A Message from Doug Britton, ATRP Program Manager
After wrapping up another successful Poultry World exhibit at the Georgia National Fair (www.georgianationalfair.com),
I am reminded how fortunate we are to work with such a great group of industry and academic volunteers. More than 160 individuals from 22 different organizations and facilities volunteered to staff the exhibit during the 10 days of the fair. This often involved answering a wide range of questions and explaining the important role that the poultry industry plays in providing a wholesome food supply to the world, while serving as an economic engine here in the State of Georgia. One of my favorite things is to see the eyes of school children light up as they watch the chicks hatch and then hold the days-old birds. It is also exciting to see the school children lined up and wrapped around and outside the building waiting to enter the exhibit. For many, it is their first visit, while others have made visiting Poultry World an annual pilgrimage. I often hear parents and teachers mention that their visit to the fair would not be complete without a stop to hold a baby chick.
Besides being an interactive “playground,” Poultry World is also a valuable educational tool for adults and children alike. With individual exhibits on feed and nutrition, the development of a hatching egg, the hatchery, brooding, growout, the processing stages, and the table egg industry, visitors can glean a wealth of information about the various aspects of the poultry business. These displays also impress upon students, in particular, that poultry production and processing is rich in science and engineering, and that academic pursuits in these fields are essential for a successful career in modern agriculture. Of course, one of the challenges is keeping the information and content fresh, relevant, and engaging. Several great ideas have been suggested for improving the displays and making them more interactive, and we are always looking for new ways to enhance the exhibit. While it may take some investment of time and resources to keep it going, the Poultry World exhibit has become a pivotal and valuable part of the industry’s outreach efforts in the community. So, I want to thank all the volunteers and companies for making Poultry World the best and most visited exhibit at the fair!
If you or your company would like to volunteer to staff a shift at the Poultry World exhibit next year, please contact Kristi Campbell at (404) 407-8822.
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Technical Assistance Is Just a Phone Call Away
The Agricultural Technology Research Program (ATRP) provides no-cost technical assistance to Georgia-based firms and individuals in the poultry industry. These assists include simple inquiries regarding information or help needed to address a problem and extensive on-site consultations in which researchers collect data and provide a full report on their findings and recommendations. The technical assistance program also offers in-plant energy assessments designed to help companies identify strategies of reducing energy usage and costs. Recently, the program was extended to include workplace safety consultations, specifically those focused on ergonomics and cumulative trauma disorders. ATRP uses input from all assists to gauge situations calling for new research initiatives in energy, environmental, safety, and other areas.
To inquire about the program or to schedule an assist, call Doug Britton at (404) 407-8829 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Food Processing Technology Building
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By Nicole Dyer, Popular Science
If you’ve ever wondered how boneless chicken parts end up that way, take a peek inside one of the 4,000 or so poultry processing plants in the U.S. Workers man massive assembly lines to scald, pluck, gut, slice, and wrap an estimated nine billion birds annually.
Infrared photos reveal Yellowstone's dark side
Using high-res heat vision, a scientist and a photographer are shedding new light on Yellowstone — and hoping to inspire new scientists in the process.
Yellowstone National Park is an eye-catching place, full of sweeping vistas, diverse wildlife and vivid geology. But as humans, our eyes can't catch all of it. Yellowstone, like the rest of the world, is visible to us only through a sliver of reflected light.
But thanks to a nature photographer from Montana and a geoscientist from Georgia, the park has begun to reveal itself in surprising new ways. Using state-of-the-art infrared cameras, the duo — along with a team of collaborators from the Georgia Institute of Technology — is documenting Yellowstone in high-resolution heat vision instead of visible light, uncovering a layer of beauty that few, if any, humans have ever seen.
Researchers with the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) have developed an automated vision system for estimating yield loss by correlating image characteristics with the amount of meat left on a frame. Employing a special illuminated cone and sophisticated software algorithms, the Cone Line Screening System can make yield measurements in under a second and has at least a 90-percent correlation with yield measurements performed manually.
Improved primary screening of poultry wastewater offers ample opportunity for reducing overall wastewater costs. Similar to in-plant practices (such as dry sweeping) that are designed to keep material out of the drain, screening is a physical process with the goal of getting gross solids out of the liquid stream discharged from the processing plant to wastewater. If successful, a smaller range of particle sizes can then be removed by follow-on processes such as chemically enhanced dissolved air flotation or biological processes.
Written By Sim Harbert and Linda Harley
The Georgia Tech Research Institute’s Food Processing Technology Division (FPTD) demonstrated in a proof-of-concept study that it is feasible to use Wiimotes as sensors to collect motion data from participants performing a simulated poultry plant lifting task. Wiimotes contain solid state accelerometers and rate gyros that are transmitted wirelessly to provide translation and rotation information. Currently, FPTD is developing MiMiC (Mobile Motion Capture), a smartphone application that wirelessly collects and stores movement data from kinematic modules that contain sensors similar to Wiimotes. This system will initially collect data from modules made by the Shimmer Corporation that relay accelerometer, rate gyro, and magnetic compass data over Bluetooth. The modules are housed in a small, lightweight enclosure.
Written By J. Michael Matthews
The poultry industry relies heavily on fixed automation as well as specialized robotics and perception techniques, implemented in a step-by-step “perception then manipulation” process. For many tasks, especially those involving rigid materials (package sorting and stacking) or static objects (chicken breast water jet portioning) this works well and is very efficient. However, for tasks that involve deformable product that must be manipulated (gripped, pulled, flipped, cut, etc.), this fixed “perception then manipulation” process is no longer valid. This is because the manipulation itself changes the object in real-time, invalidating prior perception measurements.
Written by Ashley B. Peterson, Ph.D., vice president of Science and Technology for the National Chicken Council.
The proposed Modernization of Poultry Inspection rule published in January 2012 provides many unique challenges and opportunities for the chicken industry. The industry is committed to ensuring a safe, wholesome, and abundant supply of poultry products for both domestic and international markets, and the poultry slaughter inspection system plays an important role in this process. The chicken industry supports a science-based, statistically validated, establishment-oriented approach to food safety and poultry slaughter inspection.
Written By Ai-Ping Hu, Ph.D.
Although plants are increasingly automated, in the food processing industry there remain many manual operations that require expert knowledge to function efficiently and cost-effectively. As previously reported (www.atrp.gatech.edu/PT_23_3/23-3_p3.html), the goal of this project is to encode this knowledge so it may be effectively taught to a robot.
Researchers are considering bird re-hang as an initial expert knowledge problem. In the re-hang task, the worker grasps the bird by the breast (usually from an unstructured pile), lifts it, and then “flicks” the bird such that its legs are each directed into a pair of moving shackles. A motion capture system is needed to quantify the kinematics and dynamics of the manual operation. The project team has implemented a motion capture capability using the Microsoft Kinect (to obtain both kinematic and dynamics data).