So, you have answers to our five questions to ask before setting up an edible oil refining business. And you’ve made a decision. You’re going to take the leap into the oils and fats processing industry. Where do you go from here?
Before you get on the hunt for oil extraction machine manufacturers for your facility, you should make sure you have a thorough understanding of the different methods of oil extraction. Depending on the oil you have decided to produce, you will need machinery to support either mechanical extraction, solvent extraction, a specialty extraction process, or a combination of these. In some cases, say, rice bran oil, you need only a solvent extraction machine to procure oil from the oil bearing material. In most cases, however - for instance, for groundnut oil, palm kernel oil and castor oil - you will need to invest in both, an expeller press as well as an extraction machine which uses a solvent like hexane. In all cases, you will also require allied machinery, like equipment for the preparation of oilseeds, which includes cleaning, disintegrating, flaking, and conditioning.
Once you’ve got a good sense of the extraction process – right from sourcing your raw materials to preparing them and extracting oil from the oil-bearing material – you can dive into the process of identifying the best oil extraction machine manufacturers in India. Even if you’re based in any other part of the world, this guide will be just as useful to you to ensure you’ve checked all the important boxes that guarantee a fruitful partnership with your chosen equipment manufacturer.
Your Ultimate Guide to Finding the Best Oil Extraction Machine Manufacturers
Here is our step-by-step guide to choosing an equipment partner that will help you thrive in the crowded and competitive oils and fats industry.
- Articulate your requirements
First things first: articulate your vision for what your oil extraction operation will look like. What oil will you produce? Is it coconut oil or groundnut oil? Maybe rapeseed or soybean oil? At what scale do you want to produce it? What level of automation would you prefer? You need answers to all these questions and more before you seek out partners.
- Research the equipment market
Knowledge is power. Do your research. Find whose equipment other industry leaders use. Take a deep look at their offerings to know what your options are. Even if you may not eventually partner with them, examine closely what the best, most advanced oil extraction machine manufacturers in the world are doing.
You may have constraints of budget, location and more. You may have to make decisions about whether you want to purchase new, custom-fabricated machinery or if you only have the budget for used equipment. Either way, it’s best to know the gold standard even if your constraints may not allow you to reach it.
For the companies you find, compare prices, quality, services offered and what makes some oil extraction machine manufacturers stand out amongst the crowd. Because at the end of the day, even the best, most expensive equipment might not be the right fit for you, your values and your ambitions. So understand the biggies in the industry, but when you make a decision, choose who is best for you.
- Think location: where should you look?
Now that you know what the market has to offer globally, narrow down your search to a geography. Keep in mind the source of your raw materials and where you intend to sell your finished product. If you intend to use coconuts from the Western Coast of India and sell crude oil to a refinery in the coastal parts of the state of Maharashtra, it would be very convenient and economical to set up your extraction plant in the region as well. It would also be ideal to have your oil extraction machine manufacturers at an accessible distance. This isn’t just a concern at the time of purchase and installation. At different points in the life cycle of your machinery, you will need maintenance visits by trained workers or you may have engineering or process challenges which only the manufacturer can help you address. So it’s always useful when your oil extraction machine manufacturers are either localised in your region of operations or have a global footprint with a service promise in whichever location you are.
In the case that you want to work with an equipment partner who is not located close to you, find their local partners. For instance, Kumar is a technological partner to Crown Iron Works, which means that you can access Crown’s technologies in oilseed preparation, solvent extraction and oil refining in all the locations where Kumar has a footprint. Kumar’s partnership with Arisdyne Systems, and manufacturing and sales license for Anderson-designed Dox Extruders, Solvex Expanders and spare parts in India mean that geography is not as much of a constraint if you are keen on using these technologies.
- Assess the capabilities of oil extraction machine manufacturers
Let’s say you’ve decided you’re going to source your machinery from India. Your first step would be to assess the capabilities of the oil extraction machine manufacturers in India. What oilseeds do they have the ability to process? Assess the design and engineering of their expeller presses and solvent extraction equipment. Ideally, the machinery should be constructed of special steel alloys, like the top quality ones that Kumar makes. Again, like Kumar’s equipment, components should be treated in such a way as to ensure long life, the equipment as a whole should have a long service life, and it should have minimal repair requirements and wear and tear parts.
- Match your needs with the oil extraction machine manufacturers’ offerings
Now that you know what you need and what the equipment players in the market offer, match the two. You want to zero in on oil extraction machine manufacturers who have preparatory and extraction machinery for the oil of your choice. Their equipment fits within the scale you are envisioning for your own extraction facility. And they are equipped to support you through the life cycle of your operations.
- Think long-term: do they offer maintenance support?
Speaking of life cycle support, remember that your relationship with your oil extraction machine manufacturers in India does not end with purchase. You will need regular maintenance, repair and upgrade support for as long as you use the machinery, so choose partners rather than just sellers; choose those who will help you succeed by offering annual maintenance contracts and other additional life cycle support.
- Think about the entire oils and fats ecosystem
The oils and fats industry extends far beyond just oil extraction. It begins on the fields, where agricultural workers plant, tend to and harvest the raw materials for your oil. It includes the logistics partners who bring the oil-bearing materials to your facility, the preparatory processes like cracking, dehulling, flaking and cleaning. It includes the oil extraction techniques and also oil refining to make it suitable for use by consumers as an edible oil. What’s more, waste materials from oil processing can serve as important resources for biodiesel, animal feed, and oleochemicals.
Can and should you integrate any of these other value-add steps into your operations? If you decide to, can the oil extraction machine manufacturers of your choice support you with this. For instance, Kumar Metals offers a range of equipment which is suitable for oilseed preparation, oilseed extraction, oil refining, biodiesels, oleochemicals, feed mills, and HVO pre-treatment. Should you decide to expand your operations, you wouldn’t need to hunt for an all new equipment partner to work with.
- Cost-benefit analysis: operational profitability
At the end of the day, your bottomline is likely to drive all major business decisions. You may invest in the most expensive equipment out there, but your operations just may not have the scale to enable you to recover that investment. So make sure that after you account for CAPEX and operational costs, you are still in the green.
Kumar is known for its intelligent design, robust engineering, and operationally-profitable machinery. With more than 700 projects delivered successfully in 65 countries, you know that Kumar can solve your processing needs with our technology first approach and focus on customer joy. If you have an oil processing challenge, talk to us to find just the solution you need.
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Since 1939, Kumar has been delivering dependable process engineering solutions to the oils and fats industry. We're known for our robustly engineered, versatile, and operationally profitable plant and machinery. It's why customers all over the world depend on us to solve their processing challenges, big or small. If you'd like to know more about our solutions, please fill out the form below:
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