FAQ

Processing FAQ

 

Q: What day(s) do you process?

A: Tuesdays Only.

 

Q: How do I arrange to have my poultry processed?

A: Get in contact and we’ll find a suitable date. Generally meat chickens are processed at the 6 to 8 week age bracket.

 

Q: Do you process spent hens and roosters?

A: We can do spent hens and roosters, but we charge an additional fee due to the extra time and labour it takes due to their age and toughness. We do not think it’s an economical choice.

 

Q:How do I drop the chooks off?

A: For small batches of chickens, they need to be dropped off before 8am. Please place your chickens in one of our available crates. Leave the drop sheet with birds, or hand it directly to one of our staff members.

If you don’t have any way of transporting chickens, ie: your own crates, you may ask to borrow crates the night before if they are available. Picking up at the farm.

 

Q: Can I drop chickens off the night before?

A: Yes, with prior arrangement.

 

Q: Do I need to know anything specific about feed before bringing them for processing?

A: Birds need to be off feed for at least 12 hours prior to processing. There must be no feed in their crop when they are dropped off.

Q: Can I, or Do I need to help with processing?

A: You are welcome to watch and provide a helping hand if it’s your first small batch. As you become a regular grower and processor with us, you’ll likely want to be involved in the processing of your product and we will arrange for that to happen and go smoothly.

 

Q: Do I need to provide anything else?

A: For very small batches, we will bag and label your birds. You can pick them up the following day from processing.

For larger batches and regular growers, you will bag and place your marketing material and labels on your product yourself.

 

Q: When do I need to pay?

A: Trading terms are strictly 14 days. We will not process a second batch if in breach of our terms.

 

Q: How do I make sure I get my own poultry back after processing?

A: We work on a batch system. We only start the next batch after the first batch is completed to make sure poultry doesn’t get mixed up. You’ll fill out a drop sheet when you leave your poultry at the farm and it will be kept with your poultry up until the end of processing in the cool room.

 

Q: What would you consider to be a small batch?

A: Under 50 and irregularly processed (as in not each week).

 

Q: How do I pick them up?

A: They will be bagged and labeled and waiting in the cool room. Individually you’ll need provide a refrigeration unit or esky or some type of insulated cooling box to transport them home. They are available at the end of the day on Tuesday after processing for small batches, and must be picked up by Wednesday. If you will be distributing birds who will then onsell them (wholesale), you will require a NSW Food Authority License.

 

Q: Do you have a butcher to cut up and debone on site?

A: No, not at this stage. However, if you want to rent the space, and have a butcher come post-processing or the next day, we can discuss this option.

 

Q: If a chicken dies in the crate is that still a cost to the grower?

A: If it died the night before and is still in the crate prior to our processing, then this chicken is not processed and not charged. However, if the chicken is rejected during processing due to disease, major injury, then we still count it as being processed since we have used human labour up to that point and is a cost to us.

 

Q: Do I need to discard any injured areas of a finished bird?

A:  The meat itself is fine for cooking for personal use. However, since the presentation isn’t perfect, we would recommend not selling it at retail and using it for other purposes. As the meat can have additional blood in the area and will generally look quite red.

 

Q: Why would there be wing damage on a finished bird?

A: We use CO2 (Carbon Dioxide Beer Gas) to lower the oxygen level in the gas stunner. If the birds are extra large, and get a little stressed and flap in a confined space with many other birds, they can easily injure their wings. There is no easy way around this with larger birds.

 

Q: Is a processing fee still charged if there is wing damage?

A: Yes, while we try our best to achieve a perfect result as we are dealing with live animals, there will always be some variance that is out of our control.

 

Q: What is the ideal processing size for a chicken?

A: A dressed 1.6 kg to 1.8 kg is preferred. The live weight estimate of the bird would be around 2.3 kg to 2.6 kg prior to processing. This lowers the risk of wing damage in the gas stunner due to their large size and can still be placed in the average oven. Usually meat chickens reach the ideal size if properly raised within 6 to 8 weeks.

Q What does a Live Meat bird dress out to?

Live KG – Dressed KG
1.8 –> 1.26
1.9 –> 1.33
2.0 –> 1.40
2.1 –> 1.47
2.2 –> 1.54
2.3 –> 1.61
2.4 –> 1.68
2.5 –> 1.75
2.6 –> 1.82
2.7 –> 1.89
2.8 –> 1.96
2.9 –> 2.03
3.0 –>  2.1
3.1 –> 2.17
3.2 –> 2.24
3.3 –> 2.31
3.4 –> 2.38
3.5 –> 2.45
A Dressed 1.6 KG Bird is 2.4KG Live.
Based on birds at 6-7 weeks of age.

 

Q: We have our own transport cages what are the measurements of your cages to ensure ours fit into stunning system.

A: We use the Australian Poultry Crate:

735 x 535 x 305mm. Our Tunnel Stunner does not support any crate larger than this currently. If your crate is larger and the numbers are small, there are space crates available that the birds can be transferred into.

Q: Do you have a Kryovac machine?

A: No. You’re welcome to bring one and bag your product onsite. Please be aware that if the shelf life ie Best Before date will be extended for Kryovac items, NSW Food Authority will want to see verification.

Q: Do you have a template for labels and a print source?

A: We can write your business name on the Label. Initially we will print a generic Whole Bird label with the basic NSW Labelling legal requirements on it, similar to a Deli Label. You can then add an additional label with product details and/or use pre printed bags with logo and business details.

Q: Can we help out when processing birds Tuesday?

Q: Yes! absolutely! We will even give a discount for your hours worked if you can take a role on the day ie help plucking, etc. You might even be able to process for free and simply provide your time instead.