November 23, 2021
Project no. 45 in our Top 100 Project countdown is a new 205,000-square-foot pet food processing plant for Hill's Pet Products in Richmond, Indiana.
For this project, which was completed in 1991, Epstein provided complete architectural and engineering design and construction management services. The facility, located on an 87-acre site, produces both wet and dry pet food products. The new plant was designed and engineered to very high standards for product quality to help further enhance Hill's reputation in the industry. Since new products and packages were an important part of continuing growth in the 90s, Hill's required greater flexibility in their processing and packaging systems. As such, the plant permits the running of a number of different formulas, product lines, and packaging forms.
Although their products do not come under the jurisdiction of the Food & Drug Administration, in accordance with the desire of Hill's, FDA facility design standards were practiced. To maintain FDA standards in production, a state-of-the-art, 2,400-square-foot central analytical laboratory facility was installed. In addition to this facility, there are six satellite laboratory areas, totaling 1,400 square feet. These satellite labs are used to test both incoming and outgoing products. The central laboratory is broken down in multiple areas, including: a microbiology lab, a Kjelfoss lab, a testing lab, a muffle furnace room, office, computer room, and equipment storage.
To handle future growth, the plant was designed in a modular fashion, allowing future expansions to be constructed with a minimum amount of interruption to current operations. Ground breaking on the project occurred June 28th, 1989 and plant start-up took place on June 1st, 1991, which was on schedule.