Flowfresh, a cementitious urethane system from global resin flooring manufacturer Flowcrete was specified for a brewery in Harrisonburg, Virginia to help create a robust floor that could withstand the challenging demands of high quality craft beer production.

Pale Fire Brewing Co., a brewery co-founded by experienced Head Brewer Jamie Long, was established in the city’s Cassco Ice House complex, an 80-year-old building that was in the process of being renovated. The existing floor was found unsuitable for the thermal shock, chemical spills, heavy pallets, dropped kegs and slippery conditions inherent to a brewery operation.

As part of his extensive research into the best flooring solution for his brewery, Jamie Long visited the Devils Backbone Brewing Company’s Outpost Brewery in Lexington, VA, where he reviewed the iconic Vienna Lager producer’s Flowfresh floor to see how it coped with on-site challenges.

Flowfresh, the HACCP International certified cementitious urethane system from Flowcrete, was specified due to its ultra hygienic credentials backed by relevant case studies and competitive pricing. Jamie Long explained that they needed floors that would be able to handle the stress from brewery operations. Since the installation, the floor has held up remarkably well and the facility has been constantly complimented on the cleanliness and professional look of the floor.

Prior to the application of the coating, concrete was poured in the brewing areas to ensure the floor would be able to handle the weight of heavy equipment. The floor was also sloped to allow any liquids to flow into the newly installed trench drains.

Flowfresh SL was quickly laid on approximately 2,500 sq. ft. of floor area in just three days in the new production area, bottling line and storage rooms. A topcoat of Flowfresh SR sealer was then applied to complete the floor’s seamless, impervious and highly durable finish. A contemporary, dusky red colour was chosen for the floor.

The addition of Polygiene in Flowfresh was particularly appealing to the Pale Fire Brewing Co. The silver-ion based bactericidal additive is homogeneously distributed throughout the Flowfresh material to complement regular floor cleaning and hygiene practices between the site’s scheduled wash cycles. Flowfresh samples have been evaluated to the ISO 22196 test method, which measures a surface’s antibacterial effectiveness on plastic and other non-porous surfaces.

Jamie also sought to overcome concerns of slips and trips with his choice of flooring, as spillages of beer, by-products and ingredients during the brewing process can become dangerous hazards. The floor was installed with a full broadcast of aggregates to help avoid such accidents by enhancing traction underfoot.

Though the brewery’s owners had decided against a cove base during the specification stage, Flowcrete Americas’ approved applicator convinced the client of its advantages during the shot blasting process. Since opening, the client has been impressed with how much the coving simplifies the process of washing the site.

Jamie Long recommends the cove base to anyone looking to install Flowcrete floors as it prevents grain and dirt from getting trapped at the 90-degree edge of the floor, avoiding risk of contamination in the brewery. Flowfresh’s ability to effectively minimise the potential for contamination incidents in food and beverage manufacturing facilities led to its HACCP International certification.