SIDNEY — The Sidney Rotary Club heard about Cargill from Site Leader Mickey Hamer during their Oct. 17 meeting.
Hamer has been in the food processing industry for more than 28 years. He began his career with the Hines Co. in Mason. He then took a job in California and worked there several years. Hamer returned to Ohio in March 2015 to work for Cargill.
Safety is very important at Cargill, he said, from top management to all hourly workers. In fiscal year 2015-2016, the Cargill facility in Sidney reported 16 recordable accidents. Even though Cargill reported well over 1 million hours worked, the company considered 16 recordable injuries to be too many. The goal for the current fiscal year is four recordable injuries. Cargill hopes to achieve this goal with employee meetings, awareness and rewarding employees for good behavior concerning safety.
Cargill processes soybeans into oil. Beans are first dried to a moisture content of about 12 percent, Hamer said, and tempered. Then the beans are cracked, de-hulled, conditioned and flaked. The flakes are squeezed to extract the oil from them. The oil, referred to as crude oil, is distilled and then sent to the refinery. The solid portion of the flake is turned into meal, which is used to feed livestock.
When the oil from the flakes is sent to the refinery, the oil is pretreated in a day tank. The oil becomes salad oil. Cargill purchases other types of oils from around the world and mixes the oils with the soybean oil to make a variety of oils for various uses. For example, Cargill produces all the frying oil for Wendy’s restaurants across the entire United States.
Cargill offers more than 100 blends of oils to its customers. Approximately 16 percent of the soybeans processed in the Sidney facility come from Shelby County, and 85 percent come from all over Ohio.
Cargill in Sidney employs about 500 people and ships more than 1 billion pounds of oil annually. Cargill has packaging lines to package its products and a large automated storage unit which stores and retrieves products in preparation for shipment. The ASRS has 20,000 pallet positions for storage. The ASRS retrieves product quickly and delivers the product to shipping fingers, where tow motors then load trucks. Cargill utilizes the ASRS 24 hours a day. Cargill loads 100-120 semitrailers every day. Because the ASRS is such a key component of the operation, key metrics are measured, including line downtime due to the ASRS, truck turn time, crane adjustments without error and truck completed in a month.