Call Us Toll Free: (877) 713-4209 or Local: (847) 439-4565
How to Repurpose and Keep Your Warehouse Space Flexible

How to Repurpose and Keep Your Warehouse Space Flexible

Repurposing Possibilities

When not in use, warehouses tend to be expansive, high-ceiled spaces. You can imagine them as a blank canvas. If there isn’t a future in warehousing for the space, it can be completely repurposed in a number of ways. Industrial warehouse space can become:

  • An entertainment venue. Warehouse space could be repurposed to feature live music, or other entertainment like art or cinema. While it may seem like live music and any other in-person event are a distant memory, they will become a part of life again. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is cautiously optimistic that live entertainment could make a comeback this fall
  • Office space. While remote work has become the norm for many people during the pandemic, the need for office space is unlikely to vanish entirely. As the rollout of the vaccine progresses and we are able to move back toward normal life, companies will be looking for space for their employees. Warehouses could have a second life as medical offices or some other kind of business.  
  • Production space. Warehouses could be put to use for another industrial purpose, such as manufacturing or testing. Industries such as biotechnology are booming, which likely means the need for more space. 

 

Reimagining Your Space 

Warehousing space still remains important. You may not need to completely repurpose your space. Maybe you only need to reimagine how it is used. Whether you are condensing operations or expanding the type of products stored and distributed through your warehouse, it is likely you will need to change how you utilize your space. How can you do more with the warehouse space that you have?

 

Remaining Flexible

Industrial curtains can be used to change your warehouse’s layout and its capabilities.

  • Separate spaces. Industrial curtains can help turn your warehouse into a flexible, multipurpose work space. Whether you need an airtight section or an enclosed workspace for administrative functions, you can use warehouse curtains to effectively divide different aspects of your facilities operations. 
  • Temperature control. Insulated curtains can also be put to work in warehouses to create storage space designed for temperature-sensitive products, such as food or pharmaceuticals. 
  • Sound control. If any of your repurposed work space includes noisy operations, acoustic curtains can be used to reduce sound and create quieter working zones for other team members. 

Opting for retractable curtains also allows you to remain flexible as the needs of your warehouse change over time. Learn more about AmCraft’s industrial curtains and how we can help you get the most out of your warehouse space. 

 

Sources: 

  1. https://phoenix3pl.com/repurposing-older-buildings-as-distribution-centers/
  2. https://www.dbsg.com/blog/life-after-dark-tips-for-commercial-property-owners-to-repurpose-dark-retail/ 
  3. https://hmcarchitects.com/news/repurposed-commercial-buildings-from-abandoned-big-box-to-functional-space-2019-06-12/
  4. https://www.thinkcurrituck.com/blog/adaptive-reuse-for-industrial-properties-how-to-see-the-potential-and-what-to-look-for 
  5. https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/dr-anthony-fauci-theaters-music-venues-reopen-fall-2021-1112542/ 
  6. https://theconversation.com/the-factories-of-the-past-are-turning-into-the-data-centers-of-the-future-70033 
  7. https://www.grandviewresearch.com/press-release/global-biotechnology-market 
  8. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/ 
  9. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/products/insulated-curtains/ 
  10. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/products/industrial-curtain-walls/warehouse-curtains/ 
  11. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/products/acoustic-curtains/
Why Temperature Control is Important for Your Warehouse Employees

Why Temperature Control is Important for Your Warehouse Employees

Warehouses are a major hub of the logistics industry, storing everything from consumer packaged goods to electronics. Many warehouses store and handle temperature-sensitive products, such as food and pharmaceuticals. Maintaining the proper temperature is essential to supply chain integrity and product quality. However, products aren’t the only reason warehouse owners need to be concerned about temperature. Employee comfort and productivity are also important factors to consider.

 

Temperature Control Challenges

Warehouse utility management is complex. Environmental conditions need to be precisely controlled to ensure temperature- and humidity-sensitive items are safely stored before moving onto the next step in their supply chain journey. For many facilities, especially large ones that handle a wide variety of goods, this necessitates separate temperature zones.

Discrete temperature areas in a large facility can lead to expensive energy bills, and it can be a challenge for the employees working the warehouse. Can the employees easily access different areas to do their jobs? Does moving from zone to zone affect the temperature or humidity control? Are employees comfortable while they do their jobs?

 

How Insulated Curtains Work

R4 R5 AmCraft Insulated Curtain

Thermal insulated curtains are an effective temperature control tool for industrial and warehouse settings. Insulated curtains can work in tandem with heating and cooling systems and commercial humidifiers or dehumidifiers to keep precise environmental control in separate areas configured to your warehouse’s needs and can be retractable or stationary.

The R-value of the product determines how high of a temperature differential a curtain can easily maintain. A curtain with a higher R-value means that maintain a higher temperature differential is possible, which is typically useful for industrial facilities with temperature extremes.

Many warehouses find beneficial use for options on the lower R-value side, such as:

  • R-4 insulated soft wall curtains (retractable) – R-4 insulated curtains have a maximum height of 25 feet and one inch of insulation material with a maximum temperature differential of 22 degrees Fahrenheit. R-4 curtains have a retractable construction, allowing warehouses to easily reconfigure the curtains for their needs.
  • R-5 insulated soft wall curtains (stationary) – R-5 insulated curtains have a slightly higher temperature differential of 25 degrees Fahrenheit. This option also has one inch of insulation material, but they can reach 40 feet in height. R-5 curtains are designed for stationary use.

Both types of curtains serve as barriers, creating temperature buffer zones wherever is needed in a warehouse.

 

How can lightly insulated curtains help warehouses?

  • Product storage – Temperature and humidity control are a primary concern for product quality and safety during storage. Insulated curtains offer a durable, effective and flexible solution to warehouses’ environmental control challenges.
  • Loading docks – Products need to move through warehouse loading docks to shipping containers, but temperature control remains important in this area of the facility. Insulated curtains can be employed to maintain the proper temperature here as well as in the interior of the warehouse.
  • The retractable version of our Insulated curtains allows the ability to use the curtains as needed. For example, retractable curtains still allow for machining deliveries.
  • Energy bills – By creating the separate temperature zones necessary, a warehouse can heat and cool smaller areas more effectively. Employees can easily move from one zone to another, while curtains help contain the temperature-controlled air.
  • Employee comfort – Prolonged temperature extremes negatively affect employee productivity, and they are uncomfortable for your team. By creating separate temperature zones with insulated curtains, employees only need to move into areas of extreme heat or cold when necessary to their jobs.

Take a look at our insulated curtains and ask us how our products can help your warehouse and your employees.

 

Sources:

  1. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/products/insulated-curtains/lightly-flexible-insulated-curtain-wall/
  2. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/amcraft-specsheets-insulated-1-in.pdf
  3. https://www.kanbanlogistics.com/understanding-key-warehouse-temperature-terms-logistics/
  4. https://work.chron.com/temperature-workplace-impacts-productivity-5032.html
How to Use Thermal Curtains to Maintain Optimal Temperature Control in the Food Industry

How to Use Thermal Curtains to Maintain Optimal Temperature Control in the Food Industry

Temperature and humidity levels need to be carefully controlled by facilities that store and distribute food, particularly perishable foods like meat, dairy, seafood, and produce. A properly maintained environment ensures quality control and compliance with regulations from agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Temperature control in large, industrial buildings can be a challenge. Heating and cooling systems, of course, play a key role, but businesses are challenged to maintain different sections of the facility at different temperatures. Thermal insulated curtains offer an effective solution to creating discrete temperature zones in food storage and distribution facilities. How do these industrial curtains work? How can they be put to work in your business?

Insulated Curtain Applications

Thermal curtains are made of vinyl and interior insulation. Depending on the R-value of the curtains, they can offer a temperature differential of 22 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Any facility that handles and stores foods likely has varying temperature and humidity requirements. Temperature control curtains can be used in:

  • Food and beverage manufacturing facilities
  • Food and beverage distribution warehouses
  • Facility loading dock areas
  • Storage areas for produce, dry goods, beverages, floral products, and pharmaceuticals

Benefits of Thermal Curtains

Temperature and humidity control is the primary benefit of thermal curtains, but insulated curtains also offer:

  • Durability. The vinyl and insulation layer of thermal curtains are extremely durable and easy to wash down. Additionally, this material is resistant to mildew and some chemicals.
  • Energy savings. Thermal curtains can dramatically reduce a food storage facility’s energy costs. By creating separate temperature zones, large facilities can heat or cool smaller areas more efficiently when the edges are sealed.
  • Acoustic value. While not specifically designed for noise control, thermal insulated curtains do have some acoustic value, which can be beneficial in large, industrial settings.

Curtain Options

Insulated curtains can either be retractable or stationary, customizable based on the needs of the individual facility. When it comes to temperature control needs, a higher R-value translates into higher thermal resistance. Facilities that handle food can choose from curtains such as:

  • R-25 insulated curtain walls. R-25 insulated rigid curtain walls have six inches of inner insulation: two inches of rigid material and four inches of soft compressed material. With this higher R-value, these curtains are able to maintain a maximum temperature difference of 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

Learn more about AmCraft’s insulated thermal curtains and how they can be put to work in the food storage and distribution sector.

Sources:

  1. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/products/insulated-curtains/
  2. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/products/insulated-curtains/medium-insulated-curtain-wall/
  3. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/products/insulated-curtains/heavy-flexible-insulated-curtain-wall/
  4. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/products/insulated-curtains/heaviest-rigid-insulated-curtain-wall/
  5. https://www.fda.gov/files/food/published/Evaluation-and-Definition-of-Potentially-Hazardous-Foods.pdf
  6. https://www.amcraftindustrialcurtainwall.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/amcraft-specsheets-insulated-3-in.pdf
Brewing from Start to Finish: How Temperature Matters in the Beer Business

Brewing from Start to Finish: How Temperature Matters in the Beer Business

The beer market is valued at $114.2 billion, and there were more than 7,000 breweries operating in the United States in 2018, according to the Brewers Association. Each of these breweries carefully crafts their beers, starting with the raw ingredients and finishing with the branded bottling. Throughout this process, brewers need to pay careful attention to the temperature of the environment to ensure their beer captures the intended flavor and maintains that quality all the way until the end consumer takes that first sip.

Learn about the vast brewing industry, the process of making beer, and how temperature matters.

Brewery Types
Not all breweries are the same. Some offer only small batches of craft beer onsite, while others are large regional hubs that ship their beers to multiple different retail locations.

  • Microbreweries, as the name suggests, produce small batches of beer–typically 15,000 barrels or less per year, according to the Brewers Association. Microbreweries tend to sell the majority of their beer off-site.
  • Brewpub and taprooms. Brewpubs and taprooms both sell at least a quarter of the beer they produce onsite, according to the Brewers Association. Brewpubs offer food alongside their beer, while taprooms focus mainly on libations. These types of breweries often sell their products to-go as well.
  • Regional breweries. Regional breweries are large hubs that can produce millions of barrels per year, according to the Brewers Association. Regional breweries will ship their beer through multiple distribution channels.

The Brewing Process
Brewing beer is a multi-step process that takes time and precision. Here are the basic steps:

  • Milling and mashing. Grain is the base ingredient of any type of beer. Brewers begin the process of making beer by milling, or crushing, the grain. Then, grain is set in hot, but not boiling, water, according to Beeriety.
  • The product of these processes, called wort, is then boiled as the brewer adds other ingredients, such as hops.
  • As the brew cools, brewers will separate out any remaining particles to prepare the liquid for the next step in the process.
  • Brewers next add yeast and sugar to begin the fermentation process. Most beer will need a few weeks to complete this process. During that time, the temperature of the fermentation space is important. Though it may vary depending on the type of beer, 60 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit is typically the optimal room temperature for this step in the brewing process, according to Brew with Kits.
  • Once the beer is bottled, it will need time to age. Higher temperatures will mean faster aging, so brewers need to be cognizant of the temperature. Most beers should age in an environment at 55 to 65 degrees, according to Draft.

Given the different temperature requirements of the brewing process, breweries need discrete temperature zones. Some buildings may be effectively insulated and separated for each step, but many spaces are not. Industrial insulated curtains are a flexible, cost-effective solution for creating and maintaining separate temperature zones. The opaque curtains can also help control the light conditions, another vital factor that affects the quality of the final product.

Storage and Distribution
Once beer is aged and ready for sale, it will either be sold at the brewery or it will be shipped through various distribution channels. The ideal storage temperature for beer, whether it is being kept at the brewery or a third-party logistics warehouse, varies depending on the type of beer. For example, IPAs and lagers are best stored at 45 to 50 degrees, while sour beer is typically stored at 50 to 55 degrees, according to The Hop Review.

Breweries that create a wide variety of beers can create temperature-specific zones in their storage space; likewise, distribution warehouses can maintain ideal temperatures while beer waits for shipping to its final destination. For example, R-8 and R-9 2” Insulated Soft Walls are an effective tool for transportation facilities and warehouses with temperature sections. These insulated curtains can maintain a maximum temperature difference of 22 degrees.

If your brewery, large or small, needs help with temperature management, we have the solution. Contact us to speak with a knowledgeable Industrial Curtain Wall Specialist about the different types of insulated curtains and get a quote for your business.

Opportunities for Industrial Curtains in Material Handling

Opportunities for Industrial Curtains in Material Handling

The material handling industry is tasked with addressing some of the most complex needs of industrial businesses. Managing the storage and transportation of goods and products means material handling suppliers must have solutions that can cater to a wide range of storage requirements at warehouses and manufacturing plants. This has led to the rapid growth of industrial curtain products.

Industrial curtains offer alternatives to permanent walls, partitions or other enclosures. Advanced materials technology allow curtains to be customized for specific material handling needs.

Air-tight seals. Edge-sealing technology allows for air-tight curtain enclosures. This helps maintain temperature control and keep unwanted air particles, including dust, fumes, and odors from entering or exiting the storage area. These can be used to isolate materials that carry a high risk of foreign contamination. Conversely, they can be used for handling materials that are volatile, odorous, or which can potentially contaminate other materials. In addition to creating separate storage space, these curtains can be used to section-off specialized workspaces within a warehouse or production environment.

Anti-static materials. For facilities where electric discharge could result in an explosion or compromise of sensitive materials, anti-static and electrostatic dissipative (ESD) curtains are a critical solution. The same technology being applied in cleanrooms can also be used for handling and storage of electronic components. Beyond electronics, anti-static curtains can be used with volatile and combustible materials.

Food-grade materials. Food processing industries are subject to excruciating levels of regulation. Industrial curtains can be crafted to comply with the majority of U.S. and international food regulating agencies, including USDA, NSF, CFIA-ACIA and FDA. The handling and storage of certain food products requires environments that are temperature-controlled and bacteria-resistant, while others require substantial airflow. Industrial curtains can create safe dividers between food products within a freezer or cooler, as well as create temperature barriers between air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned storage areas.

Temperature control. Industrial curtains offer a more cost-effective solution to having multiple environmental and temperature zones within a warehouse or other storage and handling facility. Beyond the food industry, such capabilities are needed for pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and many other industries. Different insulating materials and thicknesses can be utilized depending on the environmental requirements.

Sound barriers. Many kinds of industrial environments use retractable acoustic curtains to separate areas where sensitive work can be done without the noise, distraction, and vibration of production. For material handling, acoustic curtains can also be used when handling products that are vibration sensitive, such as glass, electronics, volatile chemicals, and more.

Fixed or retractable. Sometimes a material handling solution requires flexible spatial dimensions. Industrial curtain tracks allow many kinds of separated spaces to be increased or modified for variable material needs. Most curtain solutions can also be installed in a stationary position with a variety of entry options.

Work area dividers. Beyond material storage, industrial curtains can also be used to partition workspaces within material handling facilities and warehouses. These can be used for office work, painting or detailing, woodwork, chemical mixture, packaging, and more.

Learn more about industrial curtain wall options, how they can be used in material handling and storage, and request a quote to get started.

Industrial Curtains Can Be an Effective Solution in the Highly Regulated Cannabis Business

Industrial Curtains Can Be an Effective Solution in the Highly Regulated Cannabis Business

Cannabis may not be federally legal at this point, but that hasn’t stopped the “green rush” from flourishing in states with medical and recreational programs. Still a relatively new business emerging from years of prohibition, cannabis regulations are stringent and evolving. Everyone who participates in the industry–from growers to retailers and everything in between– needs to stay abreast of local and state requirements while learning how to establish and expand their business. Learn how industrial curtain walls can play a role in making cannabis business operations run smoothly.

Challenges in the Cannabis Industry

Licensed cannabis cultivators create the raw product that is used to create consumer products, including dried flower, edibles, oils, and more. Growers face a number of challenges including pests, humidity control, and temperature control. Once cannabis is successfully harvested it has to be processed, which may occur at the same site of cultivation. Or, it might be shipped to an extraction laboratory or manufacturing facility. These licensed facilities are challenged to create consistent products at scale, which means their interiors are carefully designed and equipped. Finished products are then packaged and sent to retail locations, like dispensaries. Dispensaries need to have a welcoming atmosphere for their clients, but they also need to be able to store their products.

How Industrial Curtain Walls Can Help

Industrial curtain walls are a versatile solution that can be used in multiple different industries, including agriculture, consumer packaged goods, and retail–all of which play a role in the cannabis business. These industrial curtains can help control temperature and humidity and create effective barriers between work spaces.

Solutions for Different Cannabis Business Environments

Different environments within the cannabis business necessitate different industrial curtain solutions. See how these curtains can be effective in four major areas of the industry:

  • Cultivation facilities and greenhouses. Cannabis is grown in both indoor cultivation facilities and outdoor greenhouses. Both of these environments require exact temperature and humidity control. Industrial curtains can come in insulated variations, which can help facilities manage temperature and humidity control. Industrial curtains can even have airtight edge sealing, which can help to reduce the risk of pests.
  • Extraction laboratories. Extraction laboratories require precise conditions for the processing and extraction of cannabis. Floor-to-ceiling industrial curtain enclosures can be a cost effective way to create separate areas within a laboratory. These industrial curtains can help with air flow management, temperature control, fume and dust control, and more. The curtain walls can also be used to help create spaces for sterile testing and quality control.
  • Manufacturing facilities. Cannabis manufacturing facilities make a number of different types of products, including edibles. There are industrial curtains, both stationary and retractable, that are specifically designed for food processing facilities. These food grade industrial curtains, designed to meet FDA and USDA requirements, can be configured to create separate spaces in manufacturing facilities that make the baked goods and gummies so popular with consumers.
  • Dispensaries. Dispensaries are the retail outlets of the cannabis business. The customer-facing portion of a dispensary will typically feature educational material and information on the products available for sale, but these stores also need separate storage areas. Industrial curtain walls can be used to create separate areas for products in the back of the retail store. Dispensaries can opt for custom curtain walls with printed logos, which can maintain an aesthetic consistent with the location’s branding.

If you have a cannabis business or you are in the process of ramping up operations, you know the importance of detail. Learn more about industrial curtain wall options, how they can be used in the cannabis business, and request a quote to get started.