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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania » Eastern Regional Research Center » Sustainable Biofuels and Co-products Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #390393

Research Project: Chemical Conversion of Biomass into High Value Products

Location: Sustainable Biofuels and Co-products Research

Title: Effective removal of manure/mud balls from cattle hides using thioglycolate salt containing formulations

item Yosief, Hailemichael
item Sarker, Majher
item HUSSAIN, SYED - Oak Ridge Institute For Science And Education (ORISE)
item Muir, Zerlina

Submitted to: Journal of American Leather Chemists Association
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/2/2022
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Hardened mud/manure balls firmly attached on the cattle hide surface are a source of microbial contamination and leather quality deterioration. At present, there is no effective method to remove those mud/manure balls from the hide surface. To overcome this challenge ARS Scientists at Wyndmoor, PA developed formulations combining thioglycolate salt with caustic soda. All four developed formulations showed efficacy in removing attached debris from a hide surface providing a wide option for the meat and leather industry to choose the appropriate formulation for their specific needs. In the developed protocol, the bovine hides containing hardened mud/manure balls were soaked in the formulations for 5 minutes and then the adobe type debris was removed by gentle brushing. The naturally occurring bacteria count was significantly reduced by removing the debris from hide surfaces which facilitates to limit microbial contamination in both meat and hide processing plants. The impact of using the formulation on hide surfaces was assessed by post-leather analysis and found non-detrimental as treated hide pieces produced similar quality of leather as the control (non-treated hide piece). The implementation of the manure removing formulations in slaughterhouses or the leather industry will minimize the likelihood of meat contamination or hide quality deterioration.

Technical Abstract: The effective removal of hardened manure/mud balls from cattle hides remains a challenge for the livestock industry. Hardened manure/mud balls must be removed to minimize the risk of microbial meat contamination and hide quality deterioration. To overcome this challenge, we developed thioglycolic acid and its sodium, potassium and ammonium salts containing formulations. In this study, the developed four formulations were compared based on their efficacy in removing adobe type mud/manure balls from the hides in a short time. Hide pieces containing hardened manure/mud balls were soaked in the formulations for 5 minutes followed by gentle brushing to remove the debris. The firmly attached mud/manure balls were removed completely from the hide pieces soaked in sodium, potassium and ammonium thioglycolate containing the formulations. However, the thioglycolic acid containing formulation did not show that much efficacy and the debris remained attached in the hide pieces soaked in water which was used as a control. Moreover, the naturally occurring aerobic bacteria count was significantly reduced along with the mud/manure balls removal from hide pieces. After treatment, the hide pieces were processed into crust shoe leather for quality check analysis including mechanical properties, leather surface analysis and general appearance. The crust leathers made from hide pieces treated with the formulation exhibited a similar quality to that made from the control. The implementation of these inventive formulations in slaughterhouses or the leather industry will drastically reduce the time consuming and labor-intensive operations currently employed to remove firmly attached debris from cattle surfaces.