Cost Benefit Analysis for Combined Splitting and Spinal Cord Removal

Carcase splitting is an important part of the beef slaughter process. In Australia, it is currently undertaken by trained and experienced saw men often using splitting saw operated on hydraulic platforms. Although commercial automated systems have been developed overseas, these still require a manual operator to monitor and adjust. Furthermore there are reports that these systems can result in decreased accuracy from current manual practice. Previous prototype automated systems developed in Australia have stalled due to the lack of suitable sensor technology.

However, due to recent progress in automating other aspects of red meat processing and new ideas surrounding how carcase splitting could be automated, there is renewed interest in the potential economic benefits of automating the process. As well as the actual splitting, it is envisaged that removal of spinal cord material could be included in the automation.   

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