Insulation Plays Critical Role at Food-Processing Facility
Faribault Foods, a canned goods manufacturer, has been in operation for over a century and has built a brand portfolio that includes well-known names such as Butter Kernel, Luck's, Chili Man, and KC Masterpiece. In 2014, the company merged with Arizona Canning Company after being acquired by La Costeña, a Mexican food company, expanding their offerings and capabilities. To support their ongoing growth, Faribault Foods constructed a new plant in Faribault, Minnesota, in 2016. The new facility incorporates faster and more efficient production lines, as well as a can-production line, and expands the size of the complex to nearly one million square feet. During the construction of the state-of-the-art plant, insulation played a critical role. The chosen insulation needed to be resistant to moisture, as the facility required frequent wash downs. The insulation also had to provide thermal efficiency and protection against corrosion under insulation (CUI), which is a concern for stainless steel piping in food-processing environments. The selected insulation product was an EPDM elastomeric foam closed-cell insulation, which offered high thermal efficiency and moisture resistance. It was paired with a PVC jacket to enhance water and water-vapor resistance and protect against efficiency losses. The insulation was also fire-safe, resistant to the growth of microorganisms, and environmentally friendly. CUI was addressed by selecting an insulation system with low levels of halogen compounds that could react with moisture and cause corrosion on stainless steel. The insulation system was tightly sealed to prevent moisture intrusion and designed to meet the specific requirements of the project. The size of the project posed a challenge, with over five miles of pipe insulation and more than 20,000 square feet of rolled EPDM insulation installed. Skilled labor was essential for the installation, ensuring effective sealing and proper application of the insulation. Overall, the project aimed to achieve cost-effectiveness, system longevity, and reliable temperature regulation. With a well-designed and properly installed insulation system, Faribault Foods could expect a return on investment and a reliable and efficient production process.