Fonterra – Chemical Compound Upgrade
Fonterra – Chemical Compound Upgrade
“Once the capital expenditure budget was approved, TEG managed the whole process for the client, from a detailed design, to final commissioning and sign off of the new equipment”
During an audit it had been identified that there were a number of issues with the Chemical Compound. For this reason Fonterra Waitoa sought to upgrade their chemical storage facilities, ensuring they met all the relevant standards. TEG Projects is a preferred supplier for Fonterra, working across multiple sites and projects since its inception in 2005, and were engaged to deliver this chemical compound upgrade initiative.
Fonterra plays an integral part in the dairy industry throughout New Zealand, and is committed to ‘producing dairy nutrition in a way that cares for people, animals and our environment, and brings value to our communities.’ – Fonterra (2022). For that reason Fonterra Waitoa sought to upgrade their chemical storage facilities, ensuring they met all the relevant standards.
During an audit it had been identified that there were a number of issues with the Chemical Compound. One tank was identified as redundant, and several tanks did not meet the current HSNO regulations. Initially, TEG Projects were engaged to deliver a chemical compound upgrade initiative, laying out the strategy for the upgrade. The strategic objective was to replace the tanks and their associated pipework.
Why TEG Projects
TEG Projects is a preferred supplier for Fonterra, working across multiple sites and projects since its inception in 2005. Therefore Fonterra reached out to TEG Projects for this Chemical Compound Upgrade Project.
TEG Projects worked with Fonterra on the chemical compound upgrade right from the implementation stage. Once the capital expenditure budget was approved, TEG managed the whole process for the client, from a detailed design, to final commissioning and sign off of the new equipment. This began with contract negotiation and award with the selected suppliers and managing the main contractors through the whole process.
The upgrade of the bulk chemical compound took place over two winter shuts. Part of this process involved replacing three caustic and caustic blend tanks and reticulation systems (15m3, 2 x 25m3), as well as re-building and resealing the bunding for the three tanks. Bunding is an integral and essential component for such an upgrade as it is the wall that is placed around a tank to prevent a loss of the chemical should the tank fail. It needs to be 110% of the volume of the tank. In order to further increase accuracy and efficiency, TEG Projects also oversaw the upgrade of the automation component for chemical load-in and distribution to site.
The project couldn’t be completed during the annual site shutdown, since even during this time parts of the chemical plant needed to remain operational to provide the required chemicals to the site. Therefore a temporary facility for the supply of caustic soda from IBCs had to be installed, before the removal of the old tanks could commence. Another challenge was that whilst these three tanks were removed, the chemical supplier still needed to deliver chemicals to the other five tanks that remained in operation, so access had to be maintained to these throughout the project. Thirdly, two of the tanks shared a bund, so that before one tank could be replaced, a temporary bund wall had to be erected to separate it from the adjacent tank.
As with many projects TEG Projects delivers, these were complex considerations that needed careful thought and planning before the commencement of the project.
Benefits for Fonterra and the surrounding environment, and connected communities at the completion of this project were myriad. Fonterra experienced a reduction in ongoing maintenance costs for the site. Safety was increased at the plant due to safer chemical management and because non-compliant tanks were replaced with HSNO compliant tanks and bunds. By improving chemical containment TEG Projects were also able to increase site safety and improve the equipment for the Ixom chemical delivery, Fonterra’s supplier. Added to this, site efficiency was also improved due to the upgrade resulting in more reliable chemical dosing.
- Reduction of maintenance costs
- Increase safety of chemical plant, and ability to maintain high safety standard
- Improvement of site infrastructure to ensure compliance and safety