Huon Aquaculture expands on a Flowfresh floor

The food manufacturing design specialist Wiley specified a high performance resin floor from Flowcrete Australia for a $12 million, state-of-the-art smokehouse.

The flooring project at the Huon Aquaculture Smokehouse and Product Innovation centre in Parramatta Creek, Tasmania, was part of a 10-month construction programme to upgrade, centralise and future-proof the large-scale salmon producer’s operations.

The project involved a refurbishment of the existing site as well as an extension that would double the business’ footprint. The new facility opened in July 2015, bringing together Huon’s full range of seafood processing, which incorporates whole fish, fresh fish and value-added cold and hot smoked salmon production.

Huon’s Managing Director, Peter Bender, said in the company’s press release: “The new smokehouse and new product centre is part of a four-year, $200 million controlled growth strategy for the company which consolidates our operations to Tasmania, delivers increased production capacity and efficiency whilst reducing our environmental footprint.”

Wiley have been a long-term partner with Huon Aquaculture and utilised its extensive expertise in the industry to create a revitalised facility that is expected to deliver over one million dollars in cost savings in its first year alone.

Huon Aquaculture’s floor area would have to withstand the annual production of 17,000 tonnes of fresh salmon, which will subject it to heavy equipment, spillages of fish and by-products, frequent cleaning, thermal shock and constant foot traffic. As one of Australia’s premium global producers of fresh and smoked salmon products, the new 2,500m2 facility would need a floor that met the highest standards of cleanliness despite these difficult operating conditions.

Wiley contacted Flowcrete Australia regarding its ultra-hygienic antimicrobial Flowfresh flooring range and specified its polyurethane system Flowfresh SR for the task at hand. The durability of Flowfresh combined with its anti-slip, easy to clean finish made it ideal for Huon’s new facility.

A 6mm layer of Flowfresh SR was applied in the smokehouse’s main processing areas, with stainless steel drainage incorporated into the finish. Different colours designate each part of the site to aid navigation and reduce cross contamination. A Signal Green floor was installed in the Cold Smoke Slicing room and Warm Buff was used for the Hot Smoke Slicing room.

Flowcrete Australia’s Managing Director, Sean Tinsley, said: “Being specified for this project is a testament to the quality of Flowfresh, as it had to meet the high standards and rigorous demands of one of the nation’s largest salmon producers as well as a premier food industry Designer Builder.

“Thanks to its highly successful, tried-and-tested ability to create a hygienic floor finish within food and beverage industry facilities, Flowfresh has recently been accredited with HACCP International Certification. This achievement means that food producers can specify Flowfresh, safe in the knowledge that it complies with a crucial, globally recognised standard for food safety.”

A key component of Flowfresh’s hygienic credentials stems from the fact that it has been enhanced with the antimicrobial agent Polygiene®, which utilises the natural bactericidal properties of silver to eliminate germs and microbes. The Polygiene® additive is homogenously distributed throughout Flowfresh’s resin matrix, a formulation that has been tested to meet the ISO 22196 standard for measuring a surface’s antibacterial effectiveness on plastics and other non-porous surfaces.

It was crucial that the production areas maintained a clean and fresh appearance, not only to ensure a safe processing space, but also because a suspended walkway allows customers and visitors to view the facility, further emphasising the importance of portraying a spotless appearance.

Huon Aquaculture wanted it to be possible to expand its site again at a later date. Wiley therefore designed the facility so that it could be added to over the years. The Flowfresh floor ties into this aim and its robust nature means that it will be able to handle an increased workload at a later date.

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