From Hand Filling to Automation

2018 has been a big year for Skagit Valley Malting, we are building two more 10 ton Single Vessel Malting Machines, we have added two new 400 ton silos to our grain storage, and we have installed an automated packing line to greatly speed that process up.

We love to build our own equipment here, that's why we built our own patented malting machines and that is why, naturally, we would build our own automatic bagger. Designed and fabricated by our operations team – this new bagger allows us to put together pallets 10 times quicker than before.

It used to be we bagged malt by hand from a super sack with a funnel to control flow as we filled a bag to 50 pounds on a small scale. It would take two employees an hour for all the prep work, the filling, sewing and palletizing of the bagged malt.

Now with our automatic bagger, we can bag 40 bags (a full pallet) in 8 minutes, build up a bagged inventory with the rest of the batch, and get finished malt into brewer’s hands quicker!

How it works:

The first step is to pour roughly 2,000 pounds of grain into a hopper where it travels up a grain elevator and then into a load-cell that weighs out 50 pounds, it then drops the malt into the awaiting bag. Before the grain is dropped into the bag a laser prints the name of the variety, the style, and batch identification. Once the bag is filled it is mechanically lifted and placed on the sewing line where it is sealed. The only manpower is at the end of the line where one or two employees work to quickly palletize the order.