Boosting Productivity: Pneumatics in Livestock Handling
ProWay has long believed in the importance of offering pneumatic solutions to help livestock producers and processing facilities boost productivity and yield.
Pneumatics offer significant efficiency gains in livestock handling by allowing remote operation of gates in key locations of the facility. There is also a significant reduction in physical labour and stresses experienced by staff who would traditionally be required to undertake potentially dangerous and injury-prone work such as entering a confined yard or race to open and shut gates or manually force animal flow.
Traditional infrastructure in older yards typically requires workers to get alongside livestock, walking back and forth with the animals, often in their line of sight, causing stock to experience stress and baulk. Multiple staff are also needed to open and shut gates, and assist in moving animals through with higher degrees of physical intensity, making for hard work.
Producers and processors today are looking for opportunities to maximise their output and reduce the risk and workload on staff. Pneumatic gates not only provides these efficiency gains and reductions in labour overheads, but significantly improves the safety of workers and the welfare of animals, leading to greater long term profitability.
For example, remote-controlled gates can be operated at a distance of up to 30 meters by the push of a button. Animals are uninterrupted as they move through the system creating greater stock-flow and saving time. The reduction in baulking allows streamlined and stress-free processing, improving animal welfare and WH&S, and ultimately gets stock back on feed quicker.
Peter Gordon, Manager of GAIT Co Minjah Station in Victoria, believes the remote control systems in place are saving manpower and hours in operation time.
“Remote controls probably saves us a man. It’s just a press of a button for a three-way draft. We were recently doing a three-way draft on RFID and we were able to do 320 per hour and weighed 520 in just over two hours with just three workers in the yards.”
It’s not just GAIT Co that have ventured into pneumatics. Jono Ashby, Manager of Thomas Food International Feedlot in Tintinara South Australia, explains their interest in solutions that increase productivity.
“It’s important to consider all the features you need for a functional workplace. We needed a setup that would let us work cattle in all conditions, so roof cover, laneways, power, lighting, water points and airlines for remote gates were factored in the design stage.”
“The efficiency gains of this pneumatic set up is one of the key advantages. The cattle just move through the yards without stress,” said Jono Ashby.
We offer 2 types of Pneumatic Rotary Force which allows stock to move from holding yards into a working race without manually opening or closing the force by hand.
Pneumatic Rotary Block Gates are suited to working races and can control the flow of stock in single file with the press of a button.
Pneumatic Guillotine Gates are vertically lifted by remote or stationary control to allow stock flow into pens without the need for operators to enter the yard.
Pneumatic Swing Gates operate from a hinge point at the post and are ideal for leadup and holding yards.
The benefits of pneumatics also go beyond efficiency and productivity. There is a significant reduction in noise and labour intensity, reducing physical stress and toll on the body. The ease of remote controlled facilities makes for smarter workplace. These considerable improvements result in faster processing and more timely husbandry, meaning stock are back on feed quicker and less time is spent in the yards by operators.