We have the ability to dry over 850 tons of walnuts daily and can process around 80 tons per hour. We are one of the largest Walnut/Pecan Dehydrators in the entire State of California.
When a load of field run walnuts arrives at the plant, they are immediately assigned with their own individual unique number by grower, field and variety. We have the ability to track each load from the field all the way thru the dehydrating process until they are shipped to the end Handler/Processor.
The process starts with the load being dumped into one of our 6 holding pits. Each pit can hold a set of double hopper trailers. Each pit will hold a different grower and run separately. From there they move up a conveyor to an air separation system which removes any loose hulls, sticks and light foreign material. Next the nuts go into a circular leafer cage to tumble around and remove more loose hulls. From there the walnuts move to a series of stick removers. The first one removes sticks 12″ or larger and the secondary one removes sticks as small as 3″ long. The nuts are next floated in a tank to remove anything that will sink like rocks, golf balls, bottles, etc. From there the walnuts move to one of our Hamilton Patented Hulling machines to remove the green hulls. Next the nuts go thru a circular wash cage to remove any hull residue with water.
The next process is to go thru another air separation system to remove blank or light defective walnuts. From there the good nuts are sorted with one of our eight electronic color sorters to remove any dark nuts or some nuts that may still have some green hull on them. The rejected nuts go thru another hulling machine and another color sorter. The bad nuts are ground up and the good nuts rejoin all the previous good ones. From there they are put on a conveyor to be put in our drying bins that hold from 8,000 pounds to as much as 30,000 pounds each. Each bin has automated moisture sensors and that automatically close off the heat at a predetermined moisture percentage. That drying time varies based upon the time of the season and amount of moisture the nut kernels have coming in. The final part of the process is to be loaded into bulk hopper trailers, weighed on our truck scale and shipped to the final Handler/Processors that the grower requests.