KWS Manufacturing

Screw Conveyors for Conveying Offal Butterball Turkey Processing Plant in Mount Olive, NC

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Carolina Turkey - Butterball LLC
Mount Olive, NC

General Description

One of the largest turkey processing plants in the United States is owned by Butterball and located in Mount Olive, NC. The plant processes 70,000 super-sized turkeys every day and nothing is wasted. Once the edible portions have been separated, the remaining parts are sent to a rendering facility for further processing. The resulting protein meal is used in many other products such as pet food.

Generally, the rendered material is divided into two groups. One group is feathers, which are a very high-density protein source. The other group is referred to as offal, consisting of meat, certain organs, and any other portions of the turkey that will not be used for human consumption. Butterball needed to replace their existing feathers and offal conveying system and asked KWS to provide an upgraded and long-lasting conveying solution.

Solids Load Out System for Beaver Creek WWTP in Powell, TN - KWS

Existing Screw Conveyors were Worn Out

Design Parameters

  1. Product Type: Offal (Meat) & Feathers
  2. Material Density: 40 to 50 Lbs. per Cubic Foot
  3. Capacity: 1,800 Cubic Feet per Hour
  4. Duty: 24 Hours per Day, 7 Days per Week

KWS Advantages

The average weight of a super-sized turkey before processing is 70-lbs. Approximately 50-percent of the turkey weight becomes rendered product. Butterball sends approximately 100,000 lbs. per hour of material to the rendering plant. KWS has extensive knowledge of the rendering industry and has supplied screw conveyors to numerous processing and rendering plants throughout the country.

Typically, 12-inch diameter screw conveyors are sufficient to meet the capacity requirements of a poultry processing plant; however, 18-inch diameter screw conveyors were needed at the Mount Olive plant due to the high capacity requirements. Butterball relied on the expertise of KWS to design, manufacture and deliver a long-term cost effective conveying solution.

Solids Load Out System for Beaver Creek WWTP in Powell, TN - KWS

Existing Screw Conveyors Had Been Patched Multiple Times

Special Features

The existing screw conveyors in the offal conveying system were worn out and had multiple patches on the troughs due to corrosion and abrasion. The new KWS screw conveyors utilized 304 stainless steel troughs to eliminate corrosion and maximize the life of the conveyors.

KWS designed the new screw conveyors to be mounted at a 10-degree incline so liquids would drain to the lower end for removal. KWS also designed the new screw conveyors with trough side extensions. The extra height of the troughs provides additional clearance for the material to convey without risking a clump plugging up the conveyor.

The internal screw conveyor components (screws, shafts, coupling bolts) were manufactured from heavy-duty carbon steel. The screw sections were close-coupled and clocked to form one continuous helix and to remove the need for intermediate hanger bearings. Intermediate hanger bearings are not recommended for feather and offal conveying applications because the feathers can easily form a plug and cause a shutdown in the middle of a production run.

The close-coupled and clocked screws were supported by abrasion resistant AR-235 wear bars that were installed in the troughs. Wear bars are a cost-effective wear surface and create a rifling effect which encourages the feathers to convey up an incline.


"The KWS screw conveyors look great and just dropped in place when we installed them. Thanks for the help. We have more projects in the future for KWS."

Maintenance Manager – Butterball

Screw Conveyors for Conveying Offal at Butterball Turkey Processing Plant in Mount Olive, NC - KWS

New KWS Screw Conveyors with Side Trough Extensions

Screw Conveyors for Conveying Offal at Butterball Turkey Processing Plant in Mount Olive, NC - KWS

AR-235 Wear Bars Support the Screws and Promote Material Flow


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