Sofina Foods installed a Maxitech gas stunning system at its new turkey plant in late-2017. The system uses a mixture of air and CO2, added gradually. Sofina purchased the building in 2015 and invested $55 million in plant renovation. The Ontario government also contributed $5.3 million. Sofina packages its products, which include chicken, turkey and pork, under the Lilydale, Janes, San Daniele and Mastro labels.
“There are very few companies who manufacture the technology for gas stunning in the world,” says Danielle Dufour, Sofina’s senior director of communications and public relations. Sofina chose a Maxitech system because it is the most recognized solution in the industry with a strong track record. “In addition,” Dufour continues, “it offers significant layout flexibility, which optimizes the use of space at the plant.”
With this solution, birds remain in the modular drawers that they were loaded into at the farm. When they arrive at the processing plant, drawers are loaded directly from the truck trailer to the conveyor belt of the stunning equipment. “This means that the birds remain in the drawers throughout the stunning process and are not touched by human hands until they are completely stunned,” Dufour says. “This approach minimizes stress for the birds and our employees.”