Whites Concrete’s panels provide all the detail at GA Pet Food Partners’ Major New Manufacturing Facility
14 June 2018
With over 1900 individually-detailed pre-cast concrete panels supplied to date, Whites Concrete has completed the 40th phase of its supply to GA Pet Food Partners in Lancashire - one of the most technologically advanced and best equipped dry pet food manufacturing facilities in the world.
A true international concern, with 75 per cent of its pet food exported, GA partners has more private label pet food brands than any other pet food manufacturer.
The 10-year, £34M expansion of the GA site, which will see it increase its production from 140,000 tonnes of pet food per week to 250,000 tonnes per week, has so far seen Whites Concrete supply almost 4500 sq. m of its Baywall product (mainly 115mm thickness) alone. This prestressed concrete retaining wall system, which can be constructed to span vertically or horizontally, is set to provide a dense, impermeable and durable finish for new state-of-the-art GA buildings for ingredients and pre-extrusion. In order to meet very specific needs, concrete panels have required numerous cut-outs for services such as pipe entry and notches for duct intrusions and doors. Whites Concrete’s Baywall is the company’s elite pre-stressed flat-panel walling system, utilised with either steel or precast concrete posts.
Due for completion in early 2019, the upgraded GA Pet Food Partners’ facility has also required Whites Concrete’s pre-cast Groundwall panels for concrete tanks. These large L-shaped retaining walls can withstand higher loads from factors such as heavy plant and large vehicles.
Based on Lancashire’s largest arable farm near Preston on an estate measuring nine miles by four miles, the advanced production facility will even have its own railway track to streamline operations between buildings. There are currently five pet-related sites on the estate serving the main production facility. As part of the planned investment, a fully automated, 15,000-pallet warehouse will accommodate the current off-site storage – reducing significantly the 12,000 trips made between the various GA sites by consolidating all operations on to a single site. Robotic technology will load goods to ensure fast and efficient despatch. investment in the world’s first thermal twin extruder will allow GA to include very high levels of fresh meat in its premium dry pet foods - without the use of dry meat meals.
Whites Concrete’s partnership with GA Pet Food Partners began in 2016, when it supplied almost 250 of its ‘L’ shaped Rockwall panels (8’ in height). To meet key environmental investments at the heart of the sustainable development plan, including hi-tech odour abatement facilities and recycling of water, Whites Concrete’s Rockwall has created five 120m long/15m wide biofiltration beds (and underground tunnels) that utilise heat for GA’s production process. The filter beds clean the air before it is reused in the manufacturing process or released into the atmosphere.
Steve McLaughlin, Construction Manager at GA Pet Food Partners, said: “The pre-cast panels from Whites Concrete have saved huge amounts of time on our building programme. With such specific requirements for each panel on such a big scale, we’ve had to work very closely together to find the best, most cost-effective solutions to what continues to be a major logistical challenge”.
He added: “From day one, Whites Concrete have worked with meticulous attention to detail so that the panels are always of top quality and ready to fit in with our schedule. They have gone out of their way to provide us with the detail we required for such a huge number of individual panels – and continue to play a very important part in the development of this major facility”.
The next phase awaiting White’s Concrete’s panels is GA’s new recycling building, that as part of its sustainable plan, will recover the vast amount of paper and cardboard on site.
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