SWEDEN – The European second largest sugar manufacturer, Nordzucker AG has said that it will be investing US$114 million (100 million euros) at its sugar production factory in Örtofta, Sweden.

The company said the move, which was approved by both the executive and supervisory board is part of the strategy to concentrate its sugar production in Sweden.

As part of the process, Nordzucker will close its refinery in Arlöv, whose operations and production will be moved to the Örtofta plant.

It will invest in Örtofta’s production methods and technologies, as well as an investment in the environment to accommodate the need for increased capacity at the site.

According to the Germany-based sugar giant, the first steps in modernization of Örtofta’s sugarhouse have already been initiated and will be completed before the 2019 campaign.

In the years to come, the investments will include building a high rack warehouse, rebuilding the service center, and a new liquid and syrup facility.

“We have come far in the planning and I look forward to being now ready for the next stage.

With the consolidation, we not only ensure a long-term sustainable structure in Sweden, we also get a modern factory with efficient energy-optimized production and significant savings in the long term.

An important step to position ourselves as a stable, profitable and competitive player in the sugar market”, said Axel Aumüller, Chief Operation Officer at Nordzucker.

The entire project is expected to be completed in autumn 2021.

“I am very pleased that on basis of the decision we, in close cooperation with our beet growers, ensures the deliveries of Swedish sugar to our customers for the future,” said Katarina Silfversparre, Managing Director for the Swedish subsidiary Nordic Sugar AB and continues:

“The consolidation will mean a reduction in the number of employees in the Swedish operations.

It means a lot to me that we can handle this and the closure of the factory in Arlöv with internal relocation and natural retirement.”

The company said with the investment, energy consumption in the Swedish sugar production can be reduced by 20% and CO2 emissions by 18,000 tonnes per year.

It will also enhance more rational logistics, allowing the company to reduce transport by truck by 3,200 per year and promote rail transport.

Together with a silo inaugurated in 2017, and the energy-efficiency measures implemented in Örtofta in recent years, the new investments bring the company investments to about 150 million euros in strategic projects.

In February, Nordzucker agreed to acquire 70% majority stake in Australian sugar producer Mackay Sugar for US$42.49 million.