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CASE STUDY: QUICKDRAFT’S DEMISTER FILTRATION SYSTEM HELPED WORLD’S LARGEST TORTILLA MANUFACTURER

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Background

Intensa Gruma is the engineering division of Gruma, S.A.B. de C.V, the world’s largest manufacturer of tortillas and tortilla related products. Over the last 10 years, Quickdraft has worked with Intensa Gruma to provide production food equipment and exhaust systems to their Mission Foods Corporation. Relying on our long-term relationship, Intensa Gruma turned to us when its Monterrey, Mexico plant began to have substantial oil accumulation from their frying processes.

Problem

“When production initially started, we were using a water filtration system. A short time after that, we observed a large amount of oil accumulation on the rooftop of our production facility”, said Arturo Garcia, Manager of Engineering and Team Development at Intensa Gruma. The oil buildup began to cause increased plant maintenance issues along with higher labor costs to keep the rooftop clean. In addition to being a drain on the facility’s maintenance resources, it put this Mission Foods plant at risk of non-compliance with the socially and environmentally responsible goals it set for itself.

More than just engineering better machinery and processes for the tortilla production business units, Intensa Gruma also strives to meet best practices for sustainability and environmental stewardship. When the oil buildup turned into an unsanitary condition, Intensa Gruma acted quickly. Garcia said, “To maintain our social and environmental commitment, we knew that we had to find a solution to this problem right away. That’s when we turned to Quickdraft.”

Solution

Quickdraft has built a reputation for being an expert in the tortilla, chips and snack food exhaust industry. Gordon Cole, Western Region Sales Manager for Quickdraft said, “A natural part of the tortilla chip frying process is the need to quickly and cleanly exhaust excess oil. When Intensa Gruma described their problem to me at the Tortilla Industry Association Convention, I knew our Demister Filtration System would be the answer to their problems.” The Quickdraft Demister Unit is specifically engineered to eliminate the buildup of oil or grease on rooftops.

Since Intensa Gruma was looking to relieve the maintenance issues associated with tortilla chip production, the fact that the Demister Unit is self-cleaning and has no moving parts in the air stream made it an even more attractive option. Garcia explained, “When exploring our options, functionality was first and foremost. We are convinced that equipment that helps to reduce maintenance costs is an inherently better solution.”

Once our Demister Filtration System was identified as the right choice, the process took less than two months to complete. Working with the Intensa Gruma Team, Mission Foods, and the installation contractor was seamless and quick. According to Garcia, the entire process was “Excellent, clear and uncomplicated.”

Results

At the Monterrey plant, the results have been tremendous and nearly instantaneous. The reduction in accumulated oil on the rooftop has already translated to fewer maintenance hours, while giving Mission Foods the ability to deliver on its environmental commitments. When asked how the Demister has impacted the business, Garcia said, “The results speak for themselves with the amount of oil we see the Demister physically capturing. If we needed further proof, we could just simply look at the rooftop.”

The initial testing of the Demister Filtration System has proved successful. So successful it fact, two additional units are currently in the process of being ordered and installed.

 
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