Wendy’s selected Fabcon’s Versa Core panels for its new 168,000-sq.-ft. bakery. Source: Fabcon.
When fast-food giant Wendy's opened a new bakery to produce buns for its burgers and chicken sandwiches, it needed to eliminate the sanitation problems associated with the flour dust and steam that results from baking 1,200 buns per minute. And the last thing the company wanted was flour collecting in wall crevices, which can create a breeding ground for flour mites.

"In every step of the design process, sanitation was our first and foremost concern," says Hank Sherowski, vice president of engineering at Wendy's International Inc.

So the project coordinators for the new 168,000-sq.-ft. Wendy's Bakery in Zanesville, OH, specified Fabcon's 8-in., precast insulated concrete panels. The wall panels have a smooth side that can be covered with epoxy paint to eliminate the crevices that naturally form in concrete and other building materials.

"The smooth interior finish of these panels gave us walls that are very durable and easy to clean," notes Sherowski.

Sanitation also plays a role in production output because the combined effects of flour dust and steam decrease the cleanliness of the air, which results in buns with flaws, blisters and wrinkles. At Wendy's Bakery, any buns without perfect crowns don't meet quality standards and must be pulled off the line. But in the new facility, the smooth interior wall panels have improved sanitation, which has resulted in nearly 100 percent of the buns baking perfectly-a significant increase in productivity over the old plant, according to company officials.

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Therese Goetz, Fabcon,