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California Dairies, Inc.

Case Study
California Dairies, Inc.

California Boiler proposed using the Power Flame Nova Plus Ultra Low NOx burners coupled with Hurst boilers for California Dairies' new milk and butter processing facility.

California Dairies, Inc., produces more than 17 billion pounds of milk products annually for commercial and consumer use. Key product lines include quality fluid milk products, butter and milk powders. As the second largest dairy processing cooperative in the United States, California Dairies has sales of $3 billion across all 50 states and 52 foreign countries. The company prides itself on producing the highest quality products while providing customers of all sizes with exceptional service.

To support continued growth and expansion, California Dairies began construction of a new milk and butter processing facility in Visalia that would feature the largest skimmed milk evaporator in North America. A facility of this size required the company to address a number of engineering and technical challenges including the selection of steam boilers and associated equipment. Recognizing this need, the Vice President of Engineering for California Dairies, contacted the California Boiler service group located in Visalia and requested a comprehensive proposal.


California Dairy operates a number of plants throughout California, many of which use Power Flame burners in combination with Hurst boilers. The new facility in Visalia required two boilers, each outfitted with burners and control systems.

California Boiler proposed using the Power Flame Nova Plus Ultra Low NOx burners coupled with Hurst boilers. For the selection of control systems, California Boiler recommended a solution developed by a third party contractor, which utilized a fully metered and cross-limited approach to air/fuel and FGR control that allowed for fast and accurate changes in firing rate.

The technical demands associated with the equipment were multi-faceted. The 1,500 HP requirement was a significant leap forward over previous burners manufactured by Power Flame. Plus, additional customizations were needed within the burners and control systems to ensure accurate and repeatable air and fuel flows.

After specifying the optimal components and being awarded the project, the next critical steps California Boiler faced were planning, implementation and execution. The facility construction schedule did not allow time for extensive research and testing in the field. The boiler, burner and control packages had to arrive fully integrated and ready to operate. Most importantly, the systems needed to operate in full compliance with emissions regulations imposed by the local Air Pollution Control District.


All parties involved in the project worked diligently together to ensure complete success. Equipment was designed, manufactured and customized per the project specifications. Upon arrival at the jobsite, components were assembled and installed. The start up went off without a hitch and steam was supplied to the plant on time.

The ultimate measure of achievement was the formal compliance test. Actual emissions values were significantly better than anticipated. Both systems produced sub 5 ppm NOx and sub 10 ppm CO and did so while modulating quickly and operating efficiently and reliably.