Massey School of Veterinary Science (Tāwharau Ora) – Hoist and Monorail System

The Requirement:

An esteemed institution located on the outskirts of Palmerston North, the Massey University School of Veterinary Science (Tāwharau Ora) ranks in the global top 20 for vet schools, and is committed to shaping a bright future for animal health, wellbeing and sustainable production.

One of the realities of such a school is a regular need to lift and shift animal carcasses, which Massey University staff and students had long completed using manual methods: a lift table that had to be pushed by hand.

But with the animals weighing as much as a tonne, the university knew there was a better way: so they got in touch with our expert material handling team at Stratalign.

The Challenge:

The vet school needed to move animal carcasses safely and efficiently between the slaughter area and the storage rooms where they were chilled or frozen.

From there the carcasses would sometimes need to be moved to various sections of the site where they would be used as teaching aids.

There was also a need to move live (though sedated) animals into the vet school’s operating rooms.

As mentioned, the final system would need to be capable of handling loads up to 1000kg. Massey University also wanted it to be safely operated by just one person, with minimal effort, to save time and manpower and to minimise the chances of injury.

The Solution:

Having been engaged by the consulting engineers and architects, we began crafting a material handling solution that met all the set criteria.

The result: a bespoke monorail system with Kito Hoists.

Working closely with our international suppliers, we presented a Kito Erikkila concept capable of powering the loads in any direction, including through switch points, which allowed animals to be transported between all relevant areas of the site without needing to be detached from the system.

The system used a Kito Hoist with a 1000kg load capacity to lift the animals and animal carcasses. While Kito hoists have an enviable reputation within heavy industry, where they are primarily used, we knew that this solution would be every bit as practical and valuable in the vet school setting.

Erikkila became part of the Kito Group in 2018, and this alignment means that Kito hoists integrate perfectly with Erikkila monorail/crane systems.


This deep integration can be felt when you operate the system. The user selects the route for each load, which guarantees the animal arrives at the correct destination. And suspending the system from the portal structure  with custom brackets ensures the floor stays clear.

Ultimately the system has made the vet school far more efficient, as well as far safer for staff and students alike.