Extending an operational food production factory


Construction in food production environments is challenging, but I&G have developed a reputation as being experts at working in difficult and operational sites, from live factories to hospital critical care wards. So when an international food manufacturer wanted an extension on their working food factory in Yorkshire without disruption to their operations, they came to I&G for help.

The Solution

The factory needed a new extension, and works involved in the 30-week programme included:

  • Groundwork to divert existing services and install new
  • Creating new foundations
  • Forming a new concrete floor slab
  • Structural steel frame and connections to existing building through existing cladding
  • Façade works including substructure blockwork and Kingspan cladding
  • Installation of fire escape above new building
  • External yard works including concrete access slabs and drainage connections

As the extension was being completed, the client also asked us to do further work on the staff area of the factory, refurbishing wellbeing facilities to create a better environment for the factory team to use in their breaks. This involved gutting an old bathroom area, putting in new ceilings, flooring and decorating, and adding a new bathroom area, including plumbing, new cubicles, fittings such as toilets, sinks and driers, and completing the area to a high specification, high quality finish. Although this work was not directly within in a food production area, the team still had to work to food safety standards mandatory across the full site.

The structural steel frame of the extension going up
The challenges
The project involved creation of the new extension, whilst allowing the existing factory to continue business as usual.
I&G are used to working in difficult environments, such as live hospitals, but managing construction on a working food production site has its own set of challenges.
No glass was permitted on the site, except for eyewear, which had to be accounted for, and any loss reported immediately. Regular perimeter inspections were conducted to check for the presence of vermin, and different colours of high visibility clothing had to be worn inside and outside the factory. Also, all I&G staff and subcontractors had to complete a comprehensive client induction before being able to work on the site.
Two I&G workers walk down some scaffolding stairs
As well as the challenges around food safety, there were also some other challenges around the working factory.
We needed to do structural modifications for the existing fire escape and install a new fire escape whilst maintaining a live fire escape route at all times.
Additionally, the live factory environment meant that there was constant pedestrian footfall and vehicle traffic across the site. We carefully scheduled vehicle movements and deliveries to occur outside of peak factory hours and had a dedicated banksman on hand at all times, ensuring no disruption to factory operations.

The Result

The factory extension was completed on time and on budget, with minimum disruption to the client’s operations.

During construction, we liaised closely with the clients’ specialist mechanical fitout contractor for the internal fit out of factory equipment, collaborating to share our welfare and office facilities with the internal contractors to smooth the handover.

The planning and collaboration on this job meant the food manufacturer could make their factory extension a reality, without losing production time.

Want us to help you bring your food factory dreams to life? Get in touch.

An I&G worker in high viz vest and hard hat stands in front of steel