The gelatin solution is chilled and extruded as noodles, and the gelled material is deposited as a bed onto a stainless steel plate belt. The belt is passed through a drying chamber, which is divided into zones in each of which the temperature and humidity of the drying air is accurately controlled. Typical temperatures range from about 32° C in the initial zone up to about 60-70° C in the final zones. The air is usually conditioned by filtration, and dehumidification. Drying involves progressive increases in air temperature, often with exhaustion of moist air and replenishment with conditioned air. Drying time is approx. 3 hours, depending on the quality and concentration of the material and the exact conditions employed. The rate of drying is carefully controlled to avoid melting and case hardening. The gelatin leaves the Tema dryer with a moisture content of approximately 10-12%. The dried bed is then broken into pieces that are ground to the required particle size.