Factors Influencing the Selection of an Extruder
Many feed or food related business owners that have realized the advantages of an extrusion system to their business can be faced with the decision of which extruder to consider.
Worldwide, there are several type of extruders and many extruder manufacturers. Some have pioneered the technology and some have specialized in copying the original.
There are many factors that a prospective extruder buyer should consider prior to making the commitment.
1. What do I need the extruder for?
- To inactivate anti-nutritional factors of legumes and increase nutrients digestibility?
- To assist in extracting oil from oilseeds?
- To gelatinize starch from grain and other sources?
- To stabilize an ingredient such as rice bran?
- To add value to by-products?
- To produce fish feed or pet food?
- To produce textured soy protein or to prepare snack food?
2. Can the extruder manufacturer provide me with help in evaluating my options to include a feasibility exercise?
3. Can I visit or talk to another business owner using this type of technology?
4. Is there sufficient independent research on this particular brand of an extrusion system that can help in my decision?
5. Is there a market demand and recognition for such technology that I am about to adopt?
6. Can I afford the cost of such a system? Is it profitable or practical for me?
7. Are there hidden cost of extrusion that I need to be aware of? What about the reliability of the wear parts and their availability?
8. Can I expect an after sale help from the manufacturer?
9. What if the market changed where the application is not profitable anymore, would I get help from the manufacturer as identifying other profitable options?
A reputable extruder manufacturer should treat the prospect or the customer as a partner. The relationship with the customer should not end at the point of the sale, but it should begin there.
Having an extruder is one thing but mastering the art of extrusion is another. A successful manufacturer should be willing to train the customer’s extruder operator and update him/her periodically on any significant development in the extrusion business.