J & E Hall masterminds cooling upgrade at Welsh creamery

J & E Hall won a race against time to deliver a highly-successful cooling equipment upgrade at a major Welsh creamery.  Haverfordwest creamery is owned by farmer co-operative First Milk, which is the UK's only major dairy company owned by British family farms. First Milk supplies the retail food service and milk markets with a wide range of dairy products and ingredients in the UK and internationally.

The equipment upgrade had to be completed in just ten days during the creamery's annual maintenance shutdown in January. The work was carried out inside the rapid chill room, where 20-kilo blocks of award-winning Pembrokeshire mature and extra mature cheddar have to be cooled from 30°C to 5°C over a 24-hour period. The upgrade saw cooling equipment  using R22 replaced by a modern new system running on M099 (R438A), which delivers zero ozone-depleting potential.

"It was a really smooth operation," said Tim Dalton (Service Centre Manager - Cardiff) who co-ordinated the project "We planned it almost to the hour. Ten days was the window we had to get the job done and we were actually ready to hand over a day early. The new compressors are more efficient, require less maintenance and are much quieter than the old units."   

First Milk group project engineer Tony Carter was delighted with the outcome, he said: "J & E Hall provided a cost-effective way of enabling us to change to a gas that has less impact on the environment.”     

"There was no scope to move or extend the 10-day shutdown. We had to work on getting the whole plant changed over within that time constraint. The way it was managed was impeccable.  J & E Hall worked very closely with First Milk. In fact, everyone worked extremely well as one cohesive team."