A milk processing plant is a facility where raw milk is received, processed, packaged and stored for distribution. Such plants require a well-designed and well-constructed facility to ensure the safety and quality of milk products. The milk processing plant designed for Country Delight in Haryana is an innovative and functional facility aimed at sourcing raw products from nearby areas and producing good quality and unadulterated and contamination-free milk products.
The site of the plant is planned in such a way that it has a separate entry for trucks and pedestrians. Most of the services are in the front since the electrical line is located there. Entry into the meter room is from outside of the site so that government officials can go in without entering the site. The admin block, boiler and glass plants are placed at some distance and at the end of the site, all the factory operations are placed.
PLANT DESIGN LAYOUT
The plant is capable of processing raw milk into various products such as curd, butter, etc. The design of the plant is optimized to ensure maximum efficiency and output while maintaining quality and safety standards. All the milk-processing-related spaces have been assigned to one main shed making the processing and production efficient. Other spaces such as the refrigerator room, boiler room, admin area, RMRD, store room, and tanker CIP shed around it have been given a separate area.
Tankers come into the RMRD and tanker CIP shed where milk gets tested and then sent for processing. A bridge kind of steel arrangement has been placed to aid this process which serves as the lifeline of the project. The steel bridge has cables running and everything carries through it and a hygiene room has been placed at the start for the workers before entering. This cable bridge has been installed at a height of 6 meters in order to let trucks pass beneath it with ease. All the lines are connected to this bridge, including those for the refrigerant area, main shed and other spaces. This steel bridge has numerous services running such as milk inlet, condensed water and hot water along with a firefighting line, steam line, RO water line, etc.
The truck level is 1200 mm higher than the surrounding road level and the shed floor level has been placed at the same level for ease of movement of goods. Inside the main shed the silo is placed on a further elevated level so that milk flow can take place automatically with gravity, without additional machines. There is also a mezzanine planned in steel according to 2metric ton/sq. m. for storing milk products and an ETP is placed strategically at the back planned so as to reduce the smell around it.
CHOICE OF MATERIAL
Steel is a contemporary and clean material, which is essential in food-grade units. In this milk processing unit, we used a full structure in steel because normal plaster and brick can flake off and runs the risk of contaminating the food. Steel is an ideal construction material in the food industry since it is easy to clean, maintain and sanitize.
Steel is also resistant to corrosion, bacteria and pests, making it ideal for facilities that require high standards of cleanliness and hygiene. The fire-resistant quality of steel also makes steel structures safe and secure for the workers as well as for the products.
Large 100-ton silos for milk storage have been installed made of steel, making them durable and hygienic. The versatility of steel as a material has made it easier to work with and to be used in different parts of the facility, making it a cost-effective and efficient material to use in construction.
Steel is an ideal material for pre-fab construction since it is faster to construct and the components are easy to transport and assemble. The facility was built as a pre-fab construction considering the numerous benefits and scarcity of man force during the pandemic. Pre-fab construction is ideal for such facilities since it is completely covered and constructed in a controlled environment, ensuring high-quality construction.
The PEB structure of this plant has a span of 24 meters. It is a perfect example of how steel can be used effectively to construct a state-of-the-art facility that meets the highest food safety standards.
The project was executed amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, which added several challenges to the project. However, with the collective effort of the teams involved, the project was successfully completed in a reasonable time span, including underground services. The design process was collaborative, involving input and feedback from all stakeholders, including the client, engineers, architects, and contractors, to ensure that the final design meets all requirements and expectations.
Additionally, the project’s construction included underground services that enable the flow through gravity, reducing operational expenses, however, the underground services significantly increase the complexity of a construction project. While adhering to all the by-laws and safety provisions required, our team was able to circle the complexities that arose.
Ensuring food-grade safety was a top priority at every stage of the project, from the design to material selection as well as to avoid cross-contamination. The project managers and engineers worked closely with the architects and the client to ensure that the facility met the highest food safety standards.
The Country Delight milk processing unit plant is a testament to the benefits of using steel in construction in food grade and milk processing industries. This is a functional and efficient facility that ensures the production of good quality and unadulterated milk and milk products. The project is an example of how important is it to select the right materials for food-grade and milk-processing facilities and how steel can be a game-changer in creating such facilities that meet the highest standards of cleanliness, hygiene, and safety. The success of the Country Delight milk processing unit plant shows how teamwork, adaptability and flexibility can overcome any challenges, including those posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.