Booming Craft Beer Breweries Build on Flowcrete Floors
Jan 28 2015
- Breweries increasingly turning to Flowcrete Americas.
- Craft brewery sector's boom requires fit for purpose materials.
- Cementitious urethane ideal for brewery environments.
America’s burgeoning brewery sector has been increasingly turning to Flowcrete Americas for floors that provide a productive, hygienic and fully optimized beer producing environment.
Few industries are experiencing as much of a boom as the craft brewery sector, which in recent years has seen impressive growth in new businesses, market share, sales and exports. In 2013 the Brewers Association valued the craft beer market at $14.3 billion, which represents a 20% increase in dollar sales.
A benchmark of craft beer is the time, effort and thought that is invested into making a superior beverage. As new craft breweries open and existing businesses expand, it is therefore important to ensure that the infrastructure, materials and processes are in place to ensure that the brewery facilitates the consistent creation of high quality produce.
A key element of this infrastructure is the floor beneath the brewer’s feet, as from brewing & kegging rooms to storage and tasting lounges, each area of a brewery will need a floor that meets certain criteria. Flowcrete Americas has designed a range of USDA and FDA compliant cementitious urethane flooring materials, coving and hygienic wall coatings to provide breweries with surfaces able to protect against the challenging on-site conditions.
A common theme within breweries is ensuring that, despite heavy workloads and adverse conditions, the floors are able to facilitate a clean space that avoids unwanted bacteria spoiling the beer. This functionality usually has to be combined with vibrant colors and eye-catching aesthetics, especially in the tasting lounges where it is important to create a pleasant and welcoming ambiance.
Flowcrete Americas has been working with expanding craft breweries to install resin floors designed to cope with their facility’s specific demands. This was a particularly interesting challenge at the Florida Beer Company, who wanted to refurbish a former NASA research site into a 60,000 sq. ft. showcase brewery with a capacity of 90,000 barrels and a tasting lounge.
Flowcrete Americas first had to work with the client to repair the substrate, which had undergone decades of intensive industrial abuse and then install a high quality flooring system. 12,000 sq. ft. of the slurry broadcast cementitious urethane concrete system Flowfresh SRQ was applied in the central production hall and bottling plant in a custom blend, kitchen-red color. This system’s superior compressive strengths would be able to withstand the heavy brewing and bottling equipment used on-site.
The Florida Beer Company’s tank fermentation area had the epoxy resin system Flowcoat SF41 HCS installed in a bright safety-yellow shade. This system was also applied in the storage and packaging areas, as they would not face the same level of mechanical impacts as in the main production room, but they still required a high degree of chemical resistance.
The Devils Backbone Brewery required similar solutions when it expanded its Outpost Brewery in Virginia with a new 18,000 sq. ft. brewing facility. The creator of the popular Vienna Lager was determined that the floor in its new site would retain an attractive, stain free and functional surface over an extended period of time.
13,500 sq. ft. of the Flowfresh SLB mortar system was installed in the cold storage, production, packaging and receiving areas and anti-slip aggregates were broadcast into the resin finish to minimise the risk of dangerous slips and trips around the facility. Throughout the site Flowcrete Americas worked closely with the Devils Backbone Brewery to ensure that the textured surface did not impede the cleaning regime.
The act of brewing beer inevitably entails spillages of liquids – a situation that raises several issues for the site’s floor. Primarily this means that it was important for the production areas of both breweries to have the ability to pitch the floor or lay it to falls to provide effective drainage that would swiftly remove excess water from the area.
Should corrosive substances spill onto the floor, such as the vitally important sugar solution, then this can cause more of a problem. If the finish is not sufficiently chemically resistant then these substances could erode the floor, leading to an unsanitary surface. To avoid this occurrence Flowcrete Americas has formulated systems to withstand long-term exposure to such chemicals.
The hot temperatures required to create craft beer and the steam cleaning carried out to remove stubborn contaminants can also present a challenge to the brewery’s floor. The robust build up of cementitious urethane avoids floor failures from extreme temperatures and as its thermal coefficient of expansion is similar to that of concrete it will move with the underlying substrate during thermal shock conditions, avoiding cracks and gaps appearing in the floor’s surface.
To talk to a flooring expert about specifying high performance resin solutions fine-tuned to enhance a brewery’s working environment get in touch with Flowcrete Americas today.
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Notes to Editors
Flowcrete Group Ltd. is a world leader in the manufacture of seamless industrial and commercial resin floor, wall and coving solutions as well as other specialist coating technologies. Flowcrete Group Ltd. is a subsidiary of RPM International Inc. and has international manufacturing facilities in Europe and Africa as well as Central and South East Asia.
Flowcrete supplies world-class seamless flooring solutions to transform environments across the globe including; decorative seamless resins, waterproof car park deck coating systems, seamless resin terrazzo, durable antimicrobial flooring, corrosion protection, self levelling underlayments, underfloor heating and now underfloor acoustic insulation.
Flowcrete's ambitious and dedicated team, led by President Craig Brookes, is inspired by excellence in people, products and service as well as continual innovation and sustainable growth.
Flowcrete continues to use its global expertise to introduce environmentally friendly, hygienic and aesthetically attractive floors to create a better and more sustainable world.