Mondelez Kinh Đô cuts costs and eliminates mould with textile ducts from Euro Air
Indoor climate trouble in tropical Vietnam
Ventilating food production factories can be a major challenge, especially in tropical climates like Vietnam.
With an average annual rainfall of more than 1,500 millimetres and year-round humidity levels of about 80%, food contamination is an ever-present threat in this steamy Southeast Asian nation.
Mould and harmful bacteria thrive in the damp local conditions, forcing food factories to go above and beyond to ensure the quality and safety of their products.
Unfortunately for factory owners, steel ducting, the decades-long industry standard for factory ventilation, is poorly equipped for the local climate.
Steel ducts collect condensation in humid environments, producing a perfect breeding ground for potentially harmful bacteria. To make matters worse, overhead air vents produce powerful draughts that can spread these contaminants all throughout a production facility.
What’s more, draughts result in uneven ventilation. Areas close to air vents will usually enjoy consistent air flow, while sections lying further away often go neglected in so-called ‘dead zones’ where the air remains stagnant. These dead zones introduce further food contamination risks.
King of snacks, Mondelez International joins Kinh Đô in Vietnam
In the extreme Southeast Asian climate, any inconsistency in air distribution can have a major impact on food quality.
Snack industry giant Mondelez International was well aware of this fact when they first acquired Kinh Đô, an immensely popular Vietnamese snack company, back in 2015.
In their new factory in Hung Yen province, Vietnam, the freshly coined Mondelez Kinh Đô team would produce everything from Kinh Đô mooncakes to Cosy biscuits, Solite soft cakes, Oreo cookies, Ritz crackers and Cadbury chocolates.
Mondelez Kinh Đô knew that consumers would be expecting the very finest from these internationally acclaimed snack brands, leaving them absolutely no room to compromise on quality. And that meant getting their factory’s indoor air quality and HVAC systems right as quickly as possible.
In search of solutions to the challenging local climate, they turned to Thăng Tiến Company, an engineering contractor with extensive HVAC experience.
Vietnamese contractor Thăng Tiến Company turns to textile ducting
“The Mondelez Kinh Đô factory is around 2000m2 with two production lines,” says Mr. Nguyễn Đình Vũ, Thăng Tiến Company’s site manager for Mondelez Kinh Đô.
“Initially, the whole factory was being ventilated with traditional air handling units and corrugated iron ducts,” Vũ notes.
Unsurprisingly, it wasn’t long before recurring condensation issues began to raise concerns about mould.
To get ahead of the problem, management at Mondelez Kinh Đô knew they would have to do something different. Traditional steel ducting just wasn’t working anymore.
At the time, one of Vũ’s colleagues at Thăng Tiến Company was working on a separate project involving textile based HVAC systems from Euro Air. After some detailed research on textile ducting, Vũ became convinced that Euro Air would be a perfect solution for Mondelez Kinh Đô.
“Textile ducts don’t collect water or condensation like galvanized steel systems do, so Euro Air was perfect for preventing mould in the factory,” says Vũ.
Read More: Ecco Shoe Factory beats the heat with textile ducting from Euro Air
Euro Air’s textile ducts are produced from permeable non-organic polyester materials, allowing air to continuously pass through their flexible surfaces. This prevents the build up of condensation and eliminates the growth of mould, bacteria and other harmful substances at relative humidities of less than 85%.
For exceptionally humid environments, places with 90% humidity or more, Euro Air also offers a unique antibacterial treatment guaranteed to combat the growth of mould and microorganisms—the Antibac-E washing procedure.
Instead of applying a traditional treatment with environmentally hazardous silver ions, the Antibac-E process protects textile ducts from microbial contamination for at least 3 washing cycles—about 18 months.
“Also, the entire surface area of a textile duct acts as one big diffuser, so the air is distributed completely evenly throughout the factory. There’s no draughts or dead zones or anything like that,” Vũ adds.
Read More: Euro Air & The Future of Sustainable HVAC Design
Textile ducting at Mondelez Kinh Đô, from design to installation
Vũ admits that he began by shopping around and comparing between different vendors.
“All of the off brand textile ducting systems I sampled had a lot of trouble with ducts becoming deflated and ruining our interior designs. After some trial and error we eventually made the switch to Euro Air, whose textile ducts maintain a much more appealing, rounded shape at all times,” Vũ says.
“After that experience we all knew we’d stick with Euro Air for the Mondelez Kinh Đô facility. And we’re glad we did. We received great support from Euro Air’s local sales manager, who helped us through the entire process, from design right up to installation,” Vũ recalls.
Read More: The Ultimate Guide to Textile Ducting in Southeast Asia
Beyond eliminating condensation issues and preserving interior design choices, Euro Air’s textile ducts also saved Vũ’s team from weeks of lengthy installation work and costly overheads.
“The installation is way simpler [than steel ducting]—in fact, it only took us 3-5 days to outfit the entire 2,000 square metre factory. Euro Air shipped the textile ducts and mounting accessories to our site, and we installed the ducts on our own with just a little support from Euro Air’s staff,” says Vũ.
Vũ and his team chose to suspend their textile ducts with Euro Air’s simple clip and wire system, which offers easy installation and quick removal. This makes the entire system incredibly easy to take down, clean in a regular washing machine, and reinstall.
Read More: Euro Air's Textile Ducting Product Guide 2021
“Maintenance schedules differ depending on the exact environment, but Euro Air usually recommends washing textile ducts around once every six months or so. For Mondelez Kinh Đô, factory hygiene is a top priority, so they were thrilled to hear how easy it would be to keep their new Euro Air system clean,” says Vũ.
The Mondelez Kinh Đô factory’s textile ducts were installed in July 2020, and as Mr. Nguyễn Đình Vũ is happy to report, they still look, work and feel just like new.
Join Nguyễn Đình Vũ, the Thăng Tiến Company, and Mondelez Kinh Đô in embracing the future of HVAC in Southeast Asia. Learn more about what Euro Air can do for your next design project today.