Edwards was tasked with two separate projects on the same site relating to two plants. The main brief identified that the equipment had to be as user friendly as possible for the operators and designed to have specific access points to aid in the clean-out process between crop varieties.
The first project was a state-of-the-art seed plant for oats, with a timeframe of 12 months, inclusive of the design process.
The second was an upgrade of the bagging plant, with work required to be completed within six months, also factoring in design within that timeframe. Older parts were to be repurposed and integrated alongside the new.
The nature of processing seed poses a risk to the cross-contamination of different varieties/species. Harleys has built its reputation on their product being at its peak with absolutely no cross-contamination, with their accreditation from seed regulation bodies relying on it.
To achieve this, the whole plant needs to be cleaned down from top to bottom every time there is a change from one variety of seed to another, and this can happen multiple times in a day. A highly labour-intensive procedure, a new process to make it straight forward and quick needed to be adopted.
The old plant was removed and the initial civils completed when the project was severely disruopted by COVID-19. Controls were put in place to allow the job to carry on however, these made the assembly and installation on-site far more challenging. Guidelines were strictly adhered to ensuring all health and safety regulations were followed.
The experience of working on similar projects for the client combined with Edwards’ highly skilled workforce secured the completion of the project within the tight timeframe and to the satisfaction of the client, even given the added complications that COVID-19 brought.
Overall the project was completed on time and in the budget, meeting all requirements set by the client.
The completion of this project will allow Harleys a quicker turnaround between oat varieties/species, reducing the chances of cross-contamination and protecting their reputation.
This project builds on Edwards’ ability to work on such projects, positioning them as a leading expert in completing projects of this scale, even amid a global pandemic.