Breweries Need Expert Manufacturing, Here's Why

Posted by Meghan Hayes on Feb 13, 2020 7:30:00 AM

BeerUpstate New York has Quadrupled it's Breweries in Less than a Decade.

It’s no secret that there has been an explosion of breweries popping up all over New York. Undoubtedly, the past decade has seen more changes in the American beer industry than at any other time in history, except for Prohibition perhaps.

“New York’s craft breweries are not only a source of local pride, but they create jobs and drive tourism in every corner of the state. No state has done more to assist and promote craft manufacturing than New York, because we know that when our businesses succeed, all of New York succeeds.” – Governor Andrew Cuomo

The number of breweries now tops 400, the previous New York high was 393 breweries in 1876. The number of breweries in 2012 was 95, making this industry to have more than quadrupled in size over the less than a decade. The recent growth is primarily at the fault of the New York Farm Brewery law that took effect in January of 2013. New York has issued 202 licenses since this law has taken effect, overall adding 243 new breweries since late 2012. Out of the 62 counties in New York, breweries can be found in 57 of them.

In 2003, The New York State Brewers Association (NYSBA) was founded as a promotional and legislative proponent for New York State breweries, microbreweries, farm breweries, brewpubs and brewing affiliated businesses. Paul Leone, executive director of the New York State Brewers Association said in a statement released through the governor's office that New York’s beer industry is now a $4 billion business annually.

Looking at trends for the brewing industry as 2020 is underway, we want to help those  entering the business, or those upgrading their business. The amount of work, technology and expertise that goes into building the manufacturing process for a brewery can seem a bit daunting. Optimation has dabbled in this game before, doing business with Genesee Brewing Company and Anheuser-Busch, LLC among others. Everything needed to start and maintain a brewery, we can do, and have done before. 

If you are just starting out, we can create a simple process flow diagram and a Piping & Instrument (P&ID) to define the baseline process requirements and equipment capacities needed to create your special brew.  From there we would create plant equipment layout drawing for your line (s) so you can foresee what your future manufacturing equipment would look like in the factory floor space available.  If your process is more mature and you are looking to just increase capacity, we can help with writing the correct equipment and piping/instrumentation specifications and quoting/purchasing your new equipment for you so you can focus on the most important part of your business – process development, and product quality (taste!!).

With this new design, our skilled trades can assist with fabricating special equipment supports and frames, equipment installation, electrical and instrumentation installation, control panel and IT work, clean/sanitary pipe welding & installation, CIP/product switch over operation, product commissioning support, and so much more. 

Hiring a design engineering firm should be a priority for any business wanting to go from small scale production to mass consumption quantities, and there are several advantages to hiring an engineering firm, like Optimation Technology, to build your manufacturing process when it’s time to scale up, especially if you want to be ready for next year’s thirsty Super Bowl fans.

A key project in the food & dairy industry we recently completed was a focused effort by all disciplines here at Optimation to assist a small business in our area expand their peanut butter plant. Once Again Nut Butter (OANB) is a recognized leader in Upstate New York for the manufacture of high-quality organic nut butters. The company has developed a strategy to increase their capacity, reduce cost, and improve the quality of production of their peanut butter operation in a multi-phase expansion over 20 years. This first phase included a new 40,000 square foot building, 3,500-pound-per-hour roaster and complementary blanchers, milling, and bulk filling equipment with the flexibility to easily expand capacity and change product mix.  Up until working with Optimation, OANB’s on-site technical team was executing these projects themselves and experiencing multiple challenges with coordination.  They were in urgent need of project management and installation assistance, having to respond to multiple changes in a multi-phase improvement plan that spanned across various suppliers. OANB realized that hiring an engineering firm was the most efficient way of handling their expansion, and took away most of their day-to-day problems and challenges, so they could focus on what they do best – making great nut butter products.

Since project completion, OANB has quadrupled its peanut butter manufacturing capability, benefited from reduced costs via scale-up, reduced operator labor content, and is now better positioned for future challenges.

If you’re interested in how Optimation can help you go from small scale to mass production, or any other upgrade/optimization project, contact us today! And yes - bonus points to you if you’re a brewery that offers tastings and free samples!

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Topics: Manufacturing, Skilled Trades, Engineering

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The goal of this blog is to be helpful to readers by providing useful information about applications in industrial engineering, design and skilled trades, as well as industry knowledge. We're passionate about manufacturing in the United States. We have a little fun with it too.  

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