Buhler wins contract to build new rice mill in Japan

by Emily Wilson
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Buhler AG has signed a contract to build a new rice milling facility in Chiba, Japan, that will process 40,000 tonnes of brown rice per year, the company announced recently. The rice milling project for Chibakenshukoryo Co. Ltd. is valued at 10 million Swiss francs (about U.S.$6.2 million), Buhler said.

The new facility, scheduled to be operational in October 2001, will replace an existing rice milling plant in Chiba.

"The plant will guarantee segregation-free and hygienic processing of more than 40 rice varieties," said Roman Salzmann, manager, corporate communications for Buhler.

Buhler will be responsible for all project engineering, including installation and start-up, and will supply the control system and most of the equipment for reception, cleaning, weighing and conveying for brown rice processing and white rice blending.

A pneumatic materials handling system based on Buhler's newly developed RiceLift technology — considered "a novelty" for the Japanese rice processing industry, Salzmann said — also will be installed.

The plant also will be equipped with 40 Tubex scales and Transflowtron flow rate controllers for measurement and automatic control of material streams. Buhler also will supply a complex programmable logic control system.