If you were to rate the style format of your own manufacturing facility on a scale of 1 to 10, what score would you give it? When speaking with manufacturers who have spent years contemplating layout improvement, we discovered ways in which the optimal design can significantly enhance three aspects.
General Cleanliness is Improved
Ensuring that your manufacturing facility is free and clean of contamination will ultimately save you time, money, and ensure product quality. If you are in the planning stages of your brewery design layout, incorporate easy cleaning design elements beforehand. Here are some things to consider including in your layout design for improved cleanliness:
Discuss with your equipment manufacturers the most efficient placement of equipment in each area and the best practices for cleaning pipes and the inside of tanks.
Many facilities install epoxy floors which are non-porous and have an antimicrobial coating on the surface, making them easier to clean with fewer chemicals and less scrubbing.
Installing a clean-in-place system significantly reduces and in many cases eliminates the possibility of cross-contamination between steps.
Some prefer to consult specialized firms that focus on distilling and manufacturing facilities to create the cleanest design possible.
There is an Increase in Energy Efficiency
A decade ago, energy conservation considerations were primarily cost-saving measures for manufacturers. Today, manufacturers are twice as motivated to conserve because energy usage is as much about environmental stewardship as it is about the bottom line. Once again, design can play a crucial role in saving energy costs and here are some of the most common examples:
Reducing the distances between steps means a decrease in the amount of required pumping. Less pumping, in turn, requires less power and also helps to prevent the possibility of unintended flavors in beer quality.
Incorporate heat recovery systems for reusing heat within your design. Heat can be recovered from pasteurization, fermentation, and many other steps within the process.
Have replacement parts available in case your brewing equipment needs repair. This will help speed up the brewing process again and reduce downtime.
You Save Money
The good news is that there is also an endless number of solutions for general cost savings with operations taken in making your manufacturing facility. Essentially, the real benefit of carefully planned brewery design and process management is the cumulative effect it has on cost reduction over time. Keep in mind some of these more established methods when creating your own checklist for a payback period on your investment:
If you place the conditioning tanks as close to the bar area as possible, the money spent on beer line cooling and insulation is reduced.
Preemptively save the costs of having to upgrade equipment layout by anticipating additional space in advance. It’s expensive to create space for larger equipment once expansion occurs.
Water costs can be reduced by treating and storing lauter tun water drainage in the brewhouse area for later use in brewing.
Recover the costs of wasted beer by installing a system in the filling area to collect any beer spillage.
Ultimately, learning from a design layout means knowing your goals in advance and seeking out as many facilities as possible that have already built what you are trying to create. Communicating with like-minded manufacturers who have achieved the production layout you desire will help you learn from any mistakes they may have already experienced.