Reliable NIR for at-line analysis of raw meat and meat products

The company Hans Kupfer & Sohn is one of Germany’s best known producers of sausages and other processed meat products. At their Heilsbronn plant they produce more than 300 different products, totaling around 30,000 tons annually. The whole company is based on a quality mindset which encompasses each of their 580 employees.

Choosing an NIR instrument 

Quality food starts with quality ingredients. Hans Kupfer & Sohn were looking for ways to ensure an even more consistent end product quality and recognized that they had to find a to quickly test incoming batches of meat. Around 75 tons of meat is received every day, and to make sure it meets specifications and is suitable for the intended finished products it needs to be analyzed for fat, moisture, protein and collagen content.

For analysis of finished foods Hans Kupfer & Sohn were already using an NIR lab instrument of a model which is widely used in the food industry. In some ways it would have been convenient to simply buy a second instrument of the same model for the meat intake, but their experience was that operators found it slow and difficult to use, and requirements for cleaning between analyses were cumbersome and error-prone. In addition, it required a separate computer on the side and was not water-proof for washing.

When searching for a better solution the DA 7250 SD from Perten Instruments was recommended to them. It’s ease of use, 6-second analysis time and no cleaning requirements between analyses were very appealing. An extensive evaluation gave a very positive experience. The DA 7250 SD was very accurate and so much easier to use that staff actually stopped using the other NIR instrument as they felt more confident with the Perten analyzer. Hans Kupfer & Sohn also found Perten Instruments to be very attentive and professional, and decided to purchase a DA 7250 SD.

Instrument usage and economic benefits 

The instrument is now used in the very challenging environment of the meat intake area where its IP65 water-proof design is of great benefit. Incoming meat is tested by the staff in the intake to make sure that it meets the specified nutritional composition. If a shipment is off-spec a claim can be made immediately, and the meat is used more efficiently as the fat content of the finished product ends up closer to the specification. The combined effect of these benefits means that the instrument has paid for itself very quickly.