Step-by-Step Guide to Poultry Processing

Poultry processing is both an art and a science, and having the proper equipment and know-how is the first step to success. Roots & Harvest has everything you need for backyard poultry processing. Download our Step-By-Step Poultry Harvesting Guide.

Step One - Safe and Humane Poultry Harvesting

If you raise a large number of meat birds and/or plan to raise birds for a number of years, the Poultry Harvest Station is a wise investment. Harvesting birds can be the most exciting part of the process, but it can also be the most emotional -- after all, you've been nurturing those birds since they were chicks. Fortunately, our Poultry Harvest Station makes the harvesting process efficient and humane.

  • Four Cones hold the birds upside-down and cradle them to calm and soothe them preventing damage to wings.
  • The comfortable working height allows you to safely and humanely dispatch the birds.
  • Freestanding design lets you easily maneuver around the station, making the harvesting task more efficient.
  • Each cone can hold a bird weighing up to 10 lbs. for a total capacity of 40 lbs.
In addition to streamlining the harvesting process, it also helps you give your birds as respectful and humane an end as possible while saving you the hassle and cost of sending chickens to a processor. Many people consider processing their own backyard poultry an essential step on the path to self-sufficiency. It invites a deep connection to the birds and an appreciation for the nourishment they provide.

Step Two - Scalding for Easier Defeathering

Experienced chicken processors know that the difference between a clean pluck and a difficult one lies in the scald. The feathers on a properly scalded bird readily release from the skin, making plucking fast, easy, and thorough. Plucking an improperly scalded bird, on the other hand, is frustrating, time-consuming, and often results in a bird with torn skin and loads of tiny pin feathers.

The Roots & Harvest Poultry Scalder is expertly designed for one purpose: to accurately heat and maintain the ideal water temperature for scalding. It eliminates the need to fiddle with burners, stoke fires, or haul hot and cold water - as well as the hassle of difficult plucks and poor results due to under or over-scalded birds.

A poultry scalder is one of the most important items for successful home poultry processing. You spent time and money raising your backyard birds. Why not ensure the results of that effort are perfectly plucked, attractive birds you'll be proud to serve to family and friends?

Step Three - Quickly Defeather Poultry

If you've ever plucked poultry by hand you know that it takes practice, skill, and patience. Plucking a few birds is doable but can be fatiguing and strain hands and fingers. Plucking dozens of birds is downright exhausting!

Our Stainless Steel Poultry Plucker consists of a stationary tub atop a round, rotating plate. Both the tub and plate are studded with rubber "fingers." When you turn on the plucker, the plate rotates. After dispatching and scalding the bird, you drop it into the rotating tub, and as it tumbles around the rubber fingers grab and pull the feathers. In less than 30 seconds it's time to turn off the machine and remove the perfectly plucked bird.

Talk to anyone who processes their own meat birds and you'll likely hear that a good mechanical plucker is a game-changer. It saves time, reduces fatigue, and achieves reliable results.

Step Four - Keep Your Poultry Fresher Longer

Shrink wrapping is an ideal way to prepare meat birds for the freezer. Our Poultry Shrink Bags are a fast, no-hassle, and secure way to wrap poultry or small game using our Chicken Scalder or another hot water set-up. In addition to minimizing freezer burn, the clear, glossy bags give the birds or game a tidy, professional appearance.

The concept is simple: Place the item in the bag, give it a dip in hot water, and the bag shrinks to form a tight fit that removes the air and protects the contents for up to a year in the freezer. The clear, glossy bags have rounded bottoms to ensure a perfect fit. They can also be used to shrink-wrap chicken parts.

OUR POULTRY PROCESSING PRODUCTS

Poultry Harvest Station

Humane and efficient poultry processing

View Harvest Station

Stainless Steel Poultry Scalder

Loosens quills so feathers are easy to remove

View Poultry Scalder

Stainless Steel Poultry Plucker

Powerful and quick way to defeather poultry

View Poultry Plucker

Poultry Shrink Bags Kit

Keep your poultry or small game fresher for longer

View Poultry Shrink Bags
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