Your business in the production of salt

Food industry Groceries

Total table salt production market

Often, beginning entrepreneurs, thinking about which business to open, do not pay any attention to seemingly obvious industries, in particular, mineral processing, etc.

However, many are victims of the stereotype that the development and processing of minerals is the prerogative of state-owned enterprises or large corporations. But this is far from the case. Although large organizations and the more so the state, of course, have more financial, administrative and other opportunities to develop deposits, some minerals, and in particular table salt, can be mined by small enterprises.

And even if there is no opportunity to engage in the extraction of salt, then the processing and subsequent sale is quite within the capabilities of a novice businessman.

The only limitation of the salt production business is geographic. As you know, most salt deposits in Russia are located in the Volga region, and accordingly, the company should be opened there - this will help to avoid unnecessary transportation costs: salt, as you know, is the cheapest (after water) food supplement, so any overrun in it prime cost may at some point make it unprofitable.

In fact, the salt market is extremely sensitive to any price fluctuations, for example, for gasoline or electricity: by and large, the price of salt is the sum of the costs of its production and packaging, and the cost of raw materials can be considered zero (there are no material costs as such, there are only the costs of mining halite - rock salt mineral).

In addition to the development of halite deposits, an alternative method for the production of table salt is sometimes practiced - evaporation from salt water, for example, sea water, or water from saline or deliberately dried up reservoirs - ponds and lakes. However, it becomes profitable only with large volumes of production and the presence of a sufficient number of the above reservoirs.

However, despite the apparent difficulty in tracking and controlling costs, it exists mainly in the descriptions - a well-thought-out and skillfully managed salt production business requires almost no intervention: salt is not just a running or liquid, but almost perfect product with stable high demand and almost unlimited sales market, capable of absorbing any produced quantity of products.

In addition, these products do not deteriorate and officially have an endless shelf life.

The profitability of the production of salt may seem low, primarily because of its price, but this is a false feeling: such a business will pay off any investments in the shortest possible time.

Technology and equipment for the production of salt

Despite the apparent simplicity - rock salt itself is mined in almost pure form - the production of table salt requires a certain set of well-assembled and tuned equipment, the quality of the products and, ultimately, the profitability of the enterprise as a whole, depend on its proper operation.

In this case, we will consider two types of equipment with similar indicators: the cost of raw materials 1100-1150 kg per ton of product; water consumption of 90-150 liters per ton of product; energy consumption of 20-30 kW / h per ton of product; fuel consumption (coal, gas, diesel) of 10 kg per ton of products and personnel of 2-5 people.

Both lines are made in China by different manufacturers and differ, except for the price - 1, 600, 000 yuan (about 7.77 million rubles) in the first case and 2, 300, 000 yuan (about 11.17 million rubles) in the second - with the range of products: the first line produces large edible salt, and the second, both large and small (so-called "extra") iodized or without adding iodine - i.e. only 4 species: large iodinated, large without iodine, small iodized and small without iodine.

In addition, during the clarification of the technology for the production of salt, all prices for individual nodes of the production line will be given for an approximate estimate of the cost of self-assembly.

As you know, no mineral is found in its pure form. Halite is no exception: foreign matter in the form of earth, sand, stones, metal parts, etc. - a common occurrence for him.

Therefore, crude salt entering the processing plant goes through several stages of cleaning: two washes of various types with devices followed by crushing (one for coarse salt) and two without crushing (one for coarse salt).

In addition, a special magnetic separator screens out metal impurities.

For equipment of the first stage of processing

  • crude salt hopper with a capacity of 5 cubic meters. m (price - 29, 000 yuan, or about 140.9 thousand rubles),
  • spiral conveyor (price - 28, 000 yuan, or about 136 thousand rubles),
  • belt conveyor (price –52, 000 yuan, or about 252.6 thousand rubles),
  • magnetic separator (price –5, 000 yuan, or about 24.3 thousand rubles),
  • spiral washing for salt (price - 78, 000 yuan, or about 378.9 thousand rubles),
  • roller crusher (price - RMB82, 000, or about 398.3 thousand rubles),
  • interfering sink for salt (price - 73, 000 yuan, or about 354.6 thousand rubles),
  • a special industrial salt pump (price - 41, 000 yuan, or about 199.2 thousand rubles),
  • brine tank (price - 14, 000 yuan, or about 68 thousand rubles)
  • and two brine pumps (price - 12, 000 yuan each, or about 116.6 thousand rubles for both), equipped with a special sealant resistant to aggressive (salt) environments worth 3, 000 yuan, or 14.6 thousand rubles.

Salt purified from foreign impurities is dried using an industrial centrifuge (265, 000 yuan, or about 1287.3 thousand rubles).

Then, depending on the type of product selected, the semi-finished product is sent either to the iodine addition unit (43, 000 yuan, or about 208.9 thousand rubles) to obtain iodized salt, or through an additional spiral conveyor (41, 000 yuan, or about 199.2 thousand rubles) directly into vibration drying (145 000 yuan, or about 704.4 thousand rubles) - to obtain large iodized salt and large salt without the addition of iodine.

If the selected type of table salt is small, then after passing through the unit for adding iodine and vibration drying, it is subjected to additional crushing on a roller grinder (72, 000 yuan, or about 349.8 thousand rubles).

Just as in the previous case, the iodization step is optional - depending on whether the fine salt should be iodized or not, it is added or excluded to the production process.

The final drying of the salt is carried out using hot air generated in the furnace (150, 000 yuan, or about 728.7 thousand rubles), pumped with an industrial fan (19, 000 yuan, or 92.3 thousand rubles).

However, the list of drying equipment is not limited to only these two items: in addition to the blower, you also need a cooling fan (5, 000 yuan, or about 24.3 thousand rubles), an exhaust hood for exhaust air (18, 000 yuan, or 87.4 thousand rubles .), an additional 3 sets of spiral conveyors (41, 000 yuan each, or about 597.5 thousand rubles for all) for moving salt between aggregates, a rotating sieve for separating salt fractions that do not meet the fine salt standard in size (84, 000 yuan, or about 408 thousand rubles), as well as a dust remover (34, 000 yuan, or about 165.2 thousand rubles), respectively, for dust-milled salt, which also should not be present in the final product. At the same stage, other excipients are added to the salt (also optionally), for example, ferrocyanidic potassium (E536 in the European food additive coding system) - a non-toxic complex salt - as an agent against caking salt.

In addition, it is possible to add other auxiliary substances - up to about 97-98% sodium chloride content.

Most often, iodides, carbonates, and more recently, fluorides are added. Fluoride supplementation, for example, is used to prevent dental diseases.

After adding excipients, another spiral conveyor (41, 000 yuan, or about 199.2 thousand rubles) delivers the finished salt of both types to a special bunker (39 000 yuan, or about 189.4 thousand rubles), from where they get on a semi-automatic packer (85, 000 yuan, or about 412.9 thousand rubles), and then on the line for packing in boxes (5, 000 yuan, or about 24.3 thousand rubles) and, after passing the check on automatic control measuring instruments (scales, quality control of individual and group packaging, etc., line totaling 6, 000 yuan, or an eye about 29.1 thousand. rub.) are shipped to the warehouse of finished products.

The above list of salt production equipment is complete. But additional nodes and details are not listed whose task is to link together parts of the line.

These include:

  • electrical connection devices (105, 000 yuan, or about 510.1 thousand rubles),
  • thermal insulation material (26, 000 yuan, or about 126.3 thousand rubles),
  • valves for connecting pipes (35, 000 yuan, or about 170 thousand rubles),
  • coil (10, 000 yuan, or about 48.6 thousand rubles),
  • set of connecting pipes (3, 000 yuan, or about 14.6 thousand rubles)
  • and the control panel itself (75, 000 yuan, or about 364.3 thousand rubles).

Regarding the finished lines, we can say that their purchase (as a rule, together with the assembly service, usually carried out by the specialists of the issuing enterprise) will cost a little more than the line purchased by individual nodes and assembled on their own.

On the other hand, there is also a minus at this moment: when purchasing nodes one by one, it is easier to select more reliable units for the most critical sections, while the quality of the units present in the line set corresponds to the quality of the worst of them - after all, when it goes out of order it will stop the whole technological chain, the strength of which depends on the strength of its weakest link.

The productivity of one line is 1 ton per hour (net weight, that is, without packaging), so for a start one-shift work is possible, but then, with the development of the business, it is possible to switch to a two- or three-shift one.

Prospects for the development of the salt production business

Almost all the prospects for the development of salt production are the prospects for a linear expansion of the volume of output. But really, that’s not all.

Firstly, a small market trend - the so-called "Low sodium salt" (English low sodium salt). Most of these products are mixtures of sodium chloride with potassium or magnesium chlorides. Possible launch of such a production.

Another promising area is the parallel launch of chemical production: sodium chloride is also used to produce soda, chlorine, hydrochloric acid, sodium hydroxide and sodium metal.

In addition, if not only halite, but also sylvinite is present in your field, it is possible to slightly equip the production by equipping the main line with an auxiliary one: sylvinite is the raw material for producing potassium chloride, which is used as an agricultural fertilizer.

Pavel Biryukov

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