On the 6th March, I travelled down to a Morrison’s meat processing plant at Spalding, Lincolnshire, with a former butcher – Simon Lynes Hoyland. With many years experience in the meat industry; he was the ideal man to go with. The start to the day was an early one, leaving the house at 5:00am. Having arrived at the processing plant, built in 2006, it was clear to see the mass scale of meat production that happened there. It produces only fresh, British meat and some 40% of Morrison’s meat will be produced at the plant in Spalding. The plant has a base of 700 farmers that supply to them, 100 of these farmers are actually situated in Spalding itself.
We started with beef production; from slaughter to de-boning and packing, ready for sale. 60 cattle per hour were slaughtered there and it takes 14 minutes for them to have them ready for de-boning and portioning. Next we moved onto pork slaughter; these were done at 400 per hour, visibly it was faster and only took around 5 minutes from slaughter ready for de-boning. From the day it was clear that it was a slick, smooth operation and everyone was extremely well trained and knew exactly what to do.
Although the day was an early start, it gave me a great insight into what goes on at a meat processing plant on a mass scale. I would like to thank the food department for the opportunity to go and see mass-scale butchery in action.
Grant Richards, Level 3 Food Technology and Management