The problem: As grain dust piles up more quickly than workers can clean it, an animal feed manufacturer needs a powerful and compliant solution.
The solution: Portable and central vacuum systems provide the power and flexibility needed to handle large volumes of grain dust – and provide NFPA compliance.
Animal feed manufacturing is a messy business. When spills range from anything between a light film of dust to knee-deep piles of grain, employees have a hard time accessing equipment and working efficiently.
That used to be the case with Trouw Nutrition Canada, a division of Dutch animal nutrition manufacturer Nutreco. With more than 100 facilities and a broad portfolio spanning everything from fish to livestock feed, the company is a powerhouse in the animal feed industry. And before it found DuroVac, it had a serious dust problem.
Now, a growing fleet of NFPA-compliant industrial vacuum systems helps Nutreco meet regulations and keep its facilities clean.
A Long, Laborious Cleaning Process
Before DuroVac came into the picture, Nutreco’s facilities were usually cleaned the old-fashioned way: with shop vacs, brooms, and shovels. The sheer volume of dust prevented employees from safely accessing production equipment, which meant they often lost time to a labor-intensive cleaning process.
“It would take too much time for operators to clean each level of the plant,” said Nicolas Gratien, project manager at Nutreco Canada, adding that the dust generated was also a safety and liability concern. “The building has to be as clean as possible to prevent any hazards or explosions, according to NFPA codes.”
By mixing and grinding various grains and proteins that go into feed, the facilities generated dust that is considered organic and combustible by the NFPA and ATEX — not to mention a potential draw for rodents and other pests.
According to Gratien, when it comes to finding vacuum offerings that are up to date on the relevant regulations, the choices are slim. DuroVac stood out as a premier vacuum manufacturer with built-in NFPA compliance options.
“NFPA requirements are a huge factor the industry needs to be aware of,” says Gratien.
A Straightforward Solution
DuroVac caught the eye of Nutreco’s team when the vacuum supplier demonstrated its products in person. After witnessing firsthand the systems’ portability, suction power, and ease of use, Nutreco chose DuroVac to help meet its cleaning and compliance needs.
“Nutreco required all of its operations to improve their housekeeping to mitigate the risk of dust explosion,” said Dai Lao, sales representative and project manager at DuroVac. “We began working with them in 2016.”
Nutreco first purchased portable DVR15-400 systems to deal with the micronutrient dust in its plants, as well as PL25X units for its central vacuum systems.
“Nutreco now uses the DuroVac system to vacuum micronutrients when transferring material from a bag to a processing bin,” Lao explained. “It has reduced the amount of micro-nutriment dust produced by the transfer, leaving the area cleaner for a longer time span.”
Since 2016, more vacuums have been installed in a number of Nutreco’s facilities across Canada, including Ontario, Manitoba, and Quebec. The installation process was smooth, and DuroVac experts helped in every step along the way.
“The DuroVac personnel was knowledgeable and provided reliable service,” said Gratien. “They made it easy to get the vacuum set up, and the DuroVac representative was fast and responsive. The prices were also fair and competitive.”
Trouw Nutrition plans to install more vacuum systems in all of its new and existing plants.
“Operators are happy and excited to finally focus on production instead of cleaning,” Gratien added. “DuroVac has a strong presence in Trouw Nutrition’s factories.”
For more information on DuroVac, call 905-624-4003 or visit www.durovac.com