Pukeuri handles big numbers of cull cows

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Processing cull dairy cows and bulls keeps workers at Alliance Pukeuri busy at this time of year with about 550 animals killed over a 24 hour period.

A second shift of employees went on at the end of March to process beef day and night. Before this only a day shift operated. And at the end of April a third shift started up.

Plant manager, Geoff Proctor, said to achieve this employees, who have a diverse range of skills, are transferred from processing sheep and lamb to the beef shifts. One chain of sheep processing is still operating.

Mr Proctor said the third shift is in its second year of operation and since then the plant has been able to increase its capacity by 850 head per week.

“By operating multiple beef shifts many employee seasons have lengthened,” he said.

“With the plant running seven days a week, night and day, people have to be adaptable.”

This peak period of killing usually finishes mid-end of June.

By LINDA MCCARTHY