Olympia Food Industries recently transformed its factory on Chicago’s Southside into the world’s largest pita bread manufacturing facility. Nicknamed the “Pita Pan” building by Olympia Food Industries’ owners Andre and Kostas Papantoniou, the 60,000-sq.-ft building underwent floor-to-ceiling renovations. Olympia invested more than $4.5 million in upgrades and construction, plus $15 million for the equipment needed for manufacturing pita bread, flat bread and cheese-filled bread sticks.
Valspar, Minneapolis, Minn., a paint and coatings company that offers floor coating solutions, and Concare Inc., a concrete floor repair and restoration contractor in Melrose Park, Ill., came to the rescue when flooring proved a challenge. Bill Wallrich of JWW Builders & Consultants oversaw the renovations and worked closely with Concare Inc. to install a flooring system that could withstand hot baking ovens, near 100% humidity, steam cleaners applying 220°F heat, holding freezers that dipped below -10°F, and a spiral freezer kept at -40°F in the ultra-sanitary food processing areas.
Concare Inc. recommended a combination of Valspar flooring products, including the installation of 12,000-sq.-ft. of Flowfresh RT for the mixing, proofing, preparation and cooking areas subject to USDA sanitary requirements. Flowfresh RT, a non-slip, heavy-duty rake and trowel system, includes built-in antimicrobial additive to stop the growth of oder-causing bacteria and guard against degradation from microorganisms.