MIDDLEBORO, Mass. - Except for pumpkins in October, no other fruit conjures up such seasonal memories as cranberries in November. One of the top brand names in cranberries is Ocean Spray. The company actually is an agricultural cooperative owned by more than 800 cranberry and 126 grapefruit growers in North America.

Recently, a new production facility and an upgrade of the chiller plant near the headquarters office building required some intense HVACR expertise.

In addition to the headquarters in Lakeville, Mass., fruit receiving stations and processing-bottling plants are located throughout North America.

It's cranberry season! Ocean Spray decided to have chiller plants installed that keep water at a consistent 25ºF, as well as air-handling equipment and controls to critical parts of the production process.


Ocean Spray uses its Middleboro facility to produce sweetened dried cranberries (SDCs). The SDC production process required upgrades to the building infrastructure, including a new chiller plant that would provide 25°F chilled water, plus air-handling equipment and controls.

The company wanted a single-source equipment provider to act as an owner-consultant working with the design team. This same provider would supply and install the HVAC and process chiller equipment, including the controls.

The desired result was to have this single-source provider be directly responsible to Ocean Spray, reducing the complexities and cost overruns involved in some construction processes. Ocean Spray selected Trane to fill this role, working with the manufacturer's Providence, R.I., office.

Demand for sweetened dried cranberries has tripled over the last three years, driven by consumer demand for healthy food alternatives. Ocean Spray is now working with Trane to retrofit other facilities with the goal of quadrupling production of its Craisins® sweetened dried cranberry line.


The job included a 500-ton nominal, 325-ton design Model CVHE CenTraVacâ„¢ centrifugal chiller; a 75-ton IntelliPakâ„¢ rooftop system for the product packaging area; and three T-Seriesâ„¢ rooftop air handlers to supply 125,000 cfm of conditioned air to the processing area.

The systems were integrated into a Tracer Summitâ„¢ system; these controls provide critical information to the process PLC controllers and Ocean Spray's internal Ethernet system through a Tracer Summit Webserver.

Bob Lowder, manager of Capital Engineering & MRO Programs, Ocean Spray, said, "Trane provided outstanding service throughout the Middleboro SDC Project. The excellent support and service continued right through equipment commissioning and validation."

The manufacturer is now maintaining the equipment as part of an annual maintenance agreement.

According to Lowder, "This HVAC and process cooling equipment is a critical part of our manufacturing process. We are now reapplying this design at other new SDC production facilities."

For more information, visit www.trane.com.

Sidebar: Project Ingredients

  • 500-ton nominal, 325-ton design centrifugal chiller

  • 75-ton rooftop units

  • 125,000-cfm rooftop air handlers

  • Tracer Summitâ„¢ building automation system

  • Tracer Summit Webserver

    Publication date: 11/06/2006