Baking & Snack - September 2015 - 20

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Food safety and operational excellence
should guide building design
and construction.
by A. Stuart Jernigan, LEED AP, A M King


When planning to renovate or expand an existing baking facility or build a new one, there is a critical next step
after selecting a design-build team: establishing the project's major goals. Projects often have multiple objectives,
and these goals should guide all of design and construction. Two of the most common criteria are efficiency
and food safety.

Consider human capital
In building design and construction, the people who use
the facility play an important role.
Constructing and maintaining safe, comfortable environments for employees requires ergonomic considerations. There are several ways design can enhance worker comfort while promoting safety and efficiency.
Eliminating safety hazards such as equipment protrusions and sharp edges and using slip-resistant flooring
where appropriate keeps workers safe. Adding natural
light in work and break areas and incorporating tables or
lifts to minimize bending and lifting all improve worker
comfort and safety.
During the design phase, bakers should consider clear

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travel paths and how to arrange equipment for clear
sight lines all assist in efficient operations.

Efficiency found in multiple ways
Efficiency involves a number of considerations, including energy and water consumption and product
storage and distribution. LED lighting, coupled with
natural light and harvested daylight, can decrease energy usage. Solar-powered hot water preheat systems,
variable-frequency drives, solar-reflective materials and increased insulation R-values, which measure
thermal resistance, can help, too. Depending on incentives and energy costs in a specific area, the payback
period and long-term cost savings of some of these
strategies can be significant.
Simple, cost-effective strategies such as low-flow water closets and urinals, rainwater harvesting for irrigation and air-cooled condensers allow bakery facilities
to achieve water efficiency. Many municipalities offer
plans to minimize water cost if water for a refrigeration
system condensing unit is metered separately from water that returns to the sewer system.
More bakeries have started using on-site freezing
and distribution capabilities, which sometimes lead
to decisions related to automation and footprint size
due to site restrictions. High-rise systems incorporating blast-freeze capabilities and "lights out" automatic
storage and retrieval operations are becoming commonplace. Design considerations include the refrigeration tonnage required for desired freeze times, in-rack

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