Originally established in 1913 by a small group of growers, Blue Bird, Inc. now exists as the oldest fruit growers cooperative in Central Washington. The organization’s 125,000 square foot facility utilizes state-of-the-art sizing and sorting equipment on its 42 lane cherry line and 8 lane apple/pear line, processing fruit for 193 producers.
Challenge: After losing 2 brand new Sullair 50 HP compressors in a devastating fire, Blue Bird needed to replace the system capable of supporting the new infrastructure.
Our Solution: In order to support Blue Bird’s new upgraded system, Northwest Pump provided a Sullair VCC-200 l50 HP variable speed compressor along with a Sullair S-energy model 3709B 50HP single stage rotary screw air compressor. We also added a Beko Drypoint model RAx-800 premium series refrigerated air dryer package and a Manchester 1060 Gallon receiver.
Type: Fruit processing packaging and shipping facility.
Location: Wenatchee, Washington
Timeline: 8 weeks
The facility’s star attraction is the high-tech optical cherry sorting equipment and accompanying packing lines. To accommodate increasingly larger harvests, Blue Bird installed 42 sizing lines — up from the original 28 —that are fed by robotic bin lifts that ease cherries onto hydraulic sluices to move the fruit from washing to sorting to packaging powered from a state of the art Sullair air compressor system.
Our compressed air system solution provides for a large range of compressed air demand that will often fluctuate based on the plants productivity. During times where demand for air will fluctuate, the 50HP compressor systems provide a steady “base load” supply while the 150HP variable speed system follows the profile of the demand to conserve energy. The compressors are able to provide a supply of air ranging from 227 SCFM up to 910SCFM
Blue Bird, Inc. has been a partner with Northwest Pump & Equipment since 2014. We have upgraded compressor systems in their Peshastin, Washington plant as well.
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