Should You Invest Time and Resources to Prequalify Food Plant Subcontractors?

Best practices for mitigating risk and protecting your food business

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Prequalifying subcontractors

This is a question we hear food plant owners asking themselves time and time again when embarking on new projects. Do I really need to invest in prequalifying subcontractors? I have relationships with other vendors—why pay someone else to hire subs when I can save money and just pick people myself? There are plenty of reasons that hiring subs must be taken very, very seriously. The wrong decision can result in risks ranging from project delays and unexpected expenses to safety threats. And with food manufacturing facilities in particular, you have the added layer of food safety risks. Here are some things to keep in mind if you’re on the fence about investing time and resources into prequalifying food plant subcontractors for your project.

 

How Drones are Impacting the Design and Construction Industry: Today and Tomorrow

Top takeaways from Engineering News-Record webinars

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How Drones are Impacting the Design and Construction Industry: Today and Tomorrow

Photo courtesy of DJI

 

Recently, 7-Eleven made headlines by using a drone to deliver “a chicken sandwich, donuts, hot coffee and candy.” This happened the same week Amazon “partnered with the British government to significantly expand drone testing.” Approximately 3,000 companies in the U.S. are currently authorized to use drones—a number that continues to grow. Stellar recently purchased our first drone, and we are using its aerial imaging capabilities during construction of a new food manufacturing facility.

 

Food and Beverage Plant Flooring: 5 Questions to Ask When Selecting a Flooring System

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Food and Beverage Plant Flooring: 5 Questions to Ask When Selecting a Flooring System

Photo credit: Robert Pepple

Flooring systems are one of the most critical elements in food and beverage facility design. However, owners often don’t consider selecting a flooring system until after the preliminary design phase. This is the wrong approach. You should discuss flooring systems before they are specified and before designers are in the bidding phases to facilitate the most successful system for your facility.

 

Should You Renovate Your Food Plant or Build a New Facility?

5 key considerations to drive your decision

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Should you renovate your existing facility or build a new facility? This question isn’t an easy one to answer and is, of course, dependent on capital expenditure. However, your answer should also be driven by your company’s strategic plan to ensure that your decision aligns with your long-term needs and goals.

 

Food Plant Refrigeration: Everything You Need to Know About Blast Cells

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Food Plant Refrigeration: Everything You Need to Know About Blast Cells

Whether your food plant packages frozen orange juice or processes chicken breasts, a blast cell freezer can be used to freeze almost any product. It’s important to understand the common misconceptions, the importance of proper design and how to operate your blast cell.

 

How to Design Your Food Plant for Worker Safety

4 preventative design measures to ensure personnel safety

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How to Design Your Food Plant for Worker Safety

Today, firms are “[designing] safety for each worker into every phase of every building project.” We’re addressing worker safety from the start—at the facility design phase—strategically designing plants with safety at the forefront. We call this “sustainable safety”: a strategy that unifies design and construction teams with owners and managers to identify potential hazards and integrate employee safety through design, products, services and educational programs.

 

3 Benefits of a Food Plant Observation Deck

Design best practices to elevating your food manufacturing facility tours

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3 Benefits of a Food Plant Observation Deck

Food plant tours can serve as a valuable sales tool for your company. An observation deck, or viewing gallery, is a sanitary design solution that allows you to roll out the welcome mat to visitors. This moderate, added cost solution can be ground level or elevated, offering a behind-the-scenes look at your plant’s critical processes or packaging. Let’s review design best practices in addition to three benefits these structures can offer your food plant.

 

Pork Plants: Best Practices for Effective Quick Chill System Design

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Pork Plants: Best Practices for Effective Quick Chill System Design

Quick chill systems are a viable option for hog chilling thanks to improved efficiency, product quality and yield. But to achieve these benefits, and peak performance, your system must be designed correctly.

 

Hog Chilling: Why Quick Chill Systems are Worth the Investment

How quick chilling works, improves pork product output

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Hog Chilling: Why Quick Chill Systems are Worth the Investment

There are more than 68,000 pork producers in the United States alone—competition is fierce. So how can your hog facility remain competitive? By producing the highest quality product possible for consumers, efficiently. And an effective chilling system is key to facilitating the most premium product for your consumers: a flavorful cut of meat with appealing color, firmness and moisture levels. The faster a carcass is cooled after slaughter, the better quality the meat will be. Quick chill systems, specifically, reduce chill time and produce a better cut of meat. While they may be a significant upfront investment for your food plant, this method offers significant advantages and long-term ROI.

 

An Overview of the Safe Quality Food (SQF) Certification Audit Process

A comprehensive look at the time frame, scoring parameters and more

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An Overview of the Safe Quality Food (SQF) Certification Audit Process

Last week, we outlined the basics of a Safe Quality Food (SQF) certification, examining the benefits, costs and the steps. However, the biggest piece of this food safety certification is passing the actual audit. Here, we provide a comprehensive look at the initial SQF certification audit process, including the time frame and scoring parameters.