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“Feather meal (light - mid brown) is a byproduct of processing poultry feathers; it is made from
poultry feathers by hydrolyzing them under elevated heat & pressure, then drying & grinding”
Principle of Hydrolization:
“Hydrolization of the feathers prior to drying breaks down the protein bonds in the raw material
and makes the feather meal highly digestible”
Hydrolyzed feather meal
Poultry feather meal
Hydrolyzed poultry feather meal
Some Important points:
Hydrolyzed feather meal is a good source of natural protein for most animal diets.
It can be used to replace a significant portion of other protein sources in livestock and
Feathers are made by an element known as keratin (a type of protein)
Keratin has same characteristics as of cellulose which the starch.
Hydrolyzed feather meal can be used up to maximum 8% of the poultry diets, over this
limit it may cause amino acid imbalance & rancidity along with poor palatability.
With the rising cost of fish meal, hydrolyzed feather meal is a valuable alternative,
especially in high protein and energy diets.
By his Hydrolization processing of feathers, 1000 Kg feathers are converted into almost
450 Kg feather meal.
In Pakistan, feathers of broiler are used, while in Europe Turkey’s, Hen’s & of other birds
Moisture= 7-8% & DM = 92-93%
1. Procurement & purchase of raw feather
2. Storage bins
4. Dewatering Press
5. Steaming & Drying
1- Purchase of raw feathers:
Purchase raw feathers from the local market or slaughterhouses.
2- Storage bins:
For storage of raw feathers, raw feathers truck dump bins are used. Their number depends upon
the capacity of mill.
It has circulating rods with spins which will move the feathers out when required.
First & most important step of feather meal processing plant.
10ton capacity of hydrolyzer uses 7000 pounds of steam.
Processing for 15-30 mint with steam pressure of 60-65 psig (Pounds per square inches
gauge) set on pressure gauge.
The temperature of hydrolyzer is 140°C.
Feather meal quality depends on the hydrolysis time, temperature, pressure.
If CP = Less than 75% in final product, it means Hydrolization was incomplete &
protein quality was reduced.
4- Dewatering Press:
Automated pressure choke is installed with it which will maintain the pressure to dewater the
hydrolyzed feathers & will remove water by pressing the feathers under pressure.
5- Steaming & Drying:
Steam dryer is used to dry the dewatered feathers at the temperature of 300°F for 90-120 mint.
There are steamed plates inside it where the feathers are dried.
At the dryer exit temperature moves downward up to 200°F
Then cooled at the end.
After drying the hydrolyzed feather is grounded with the general hammer mill.
A sieve of 5mm size is used to sieve feather meal after grinding. If the size of some feathers is
still over 5mm, those are grinded & sieved again.
The final product is then packed into 25 or 50Kg bags.
Stored product is kept in a clean, dry, cool environment at room temperature. Avoid direct
Functions of Feather Meal:
Improve the protein and amino acid nutrition in animal.
It contains Glutamic acid, which can adjust the taste and flavor of feed to promote the appet
ite of animals. Glutamic acid is an amino acid.
Enhance the utilization rate of feed. It contains rich and various free amino acids which can
be absorbed and digested by animals very quickly and completely
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