Peanut Butter Room - Albuquerque, NM

Contained peanut butter processing with filtered HVAC system

Due to peanuts being an allergen, this food manufacturing client hired VAA to provide 3D modeling and engineering services to construct a contained peanut butter room within an existing warehouse space. The space required an HVAC system that negatively pressurized the room and provide filtered fresh air to comply with sanitation and food contamination requirements.

Our Approach
VAA coordinated closely with the client through on-site meetings and WebEx conferences. A 3D model of the equipment, room design, structures, and HVAC system assisted with efficient discussions about space and clash detection with other food processes or employee movements.

Mechanical engineering and plumbing systems were critical for compliance. An existing floor slab was removed to accommodate a new, sloped floor and floor drains. VAA recommended a roof-top air handling system to provide filtered, conditioned ventilation to the room for employees. The HVAC system was designed to allow doors to open and close without letting “contaminated air” escape. The room received its own duct work to connect to the system. The shell of the room was constructed of insulated metal panels and concrete sanitary curb. Entry was through a separate, code-compliant stairway and egress paths.

Results
The peanut butter room was designed and constructed with code-compliant features that will support production effectiveness and help the client mitigate food safety risks. VAA provided C/S/A (civil, structural and architectural) services along with mechanical engineering for HVAC and plumbing. As part of the project team, VAA was proud to have played a key role in meeting the objectives laid out in the project charter.