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Santa Maria Sun / Spotlight

The following article was posted on October 8th, 2014, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 15, Issue 31 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 15, Issue 31

Spotlight on: Lineage Logistics

Tony Caetano, General Manager

By MICHAEL MCCONE

Standing in front of gigantic automatic doors that lead to an indoor arctic region, it’s hard to imagine this 226,000 square-foot refrigeration plant is considered small, but plant manager Tony Caetano says it is. He ought to know, he’s been in the refrigeration business for more than 20 years.

After serving a term in the Army, Caetano landed work in a refrigeration warehouse. He worked his way up over the years and is now general manager of Santa Maria’s newest, state-of-the-art refrigeration plant—and it’s also LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified, by the way.


ALL IN A ROW
The newest Lineage Logistics refrigeration plant on the Central Coast is up and running in Santa Maria.
PHOTO BY MICHAEL MCCONE

The facility on West La Brea Avenue has 132,000 square-feet of frozen storage space capable of blast freezing up to a million pounds of food per day.

But there’s a lot more going on in Lineage Logistics’ newest facility than just a cold room and forklifts loading and unloading inventory, and Caetano showed off the plant’s greatest features during the Sun’s recent visit to the newly completed building.

“We have our own moat,” Caetano said, grinning as he points out one of the exterior features of the plant that he’s proud of. The moat is one of the things that helped qualify the plant for a LEED certification. It captures rainwater, and rather than move it into storm drains, the moat contains the water until it has time to slowly seep into the water table, which means it doesn’t become runoff.

He also points out the building’s roof line, and it doesn’t look there’s anything special about it, which is exactly what makes it so special, according to Caetano. There aren’t any ugly, exposed, loud heat exchangers as there are at other refrigeration plants. Lineage encased all of its exchangers within walls in order to have less of an impact on the surrounding community.

“We tried as much as possible to get away from that industrial footprint,” he said.

Lineage, a national organization with facilities across the United States, also owns the building that Titan Frozen Fruits leases to process fruit. The arrangement is one of convenience and economy. Processed berries go through a wall between the businesses on a conveyor belt, moving fruit directly from Titan to Lineage without the hassle of trucking.

While the building was built within the last year, talks about the Lineage site started long before construction and proceeded forward despite the drought.

And the drought doesn’t have Caetano worried. He expects Santa Maria to become the strawberry capital of the world in the next few years.

“It changes every 20 years or so,” he said.

He explained that while other areas have moved onto planting other crops and cutting back on irrigation, many Santa Maria farmers have wells and have been able to continue growing strawberries despite current rainfall shortages.

“We’re here for the long haul,” he said.

 

Staff Writer Michael McCone wrote this week’s Biz Spotlight. Information should be sent to the Sun via fax, email, or mail.










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Homelessness. Our state needs to address this growing issue and come up with creative solutions.
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