UK – International food and drink group, Princes, has opened the £60m (US$63.33m) expanded drinks facility in Cardiff, Wales, to boost its production capabilities and capacity as well as enable entry into new categories as part of the company’s ongoing innovation strategy.
The expansion involved the installation of seven new soft drink production lines as well as an upgrade and refurbishment of two existing lines.
The investment also facilitated the strengthening of the site’s warehousing and logistical capabilities and the building of a new Ingredient Processing Centre.
Princes’ Cardiff site produces fruit juices for Princes, Jucee, and customer own-label products. It has long been producing one-liter, ambient juices, multipacks, and ready-to-merchandise display units.
The entire upgrade, which is the group’s largest-ever investment into soft drinks, has enabled the facility to double the overall production capacity at the site, add new packaging sizes and formats, and create 130 additional jobs.
In addition, the investment has also enabled the expansion of Princes’ product range into new markets and enabled it to expand its product range beyond fruit juice by entering the ‘low and no alcohol’ category for the first time with its ‘Skinny Mixers’ range.
Princes Cardiff head of operations Ian Davies said: “We’re extremely pleased to have completed this investment programme and proud of what we’ve achieved at Princes Cardiff following several years of hard work by our teams and partners, throughout the height of the pandemic and beyond.”
He added: “The investment has significantly boosted our production capabilities and capacity, enabling entry into new categories as part of our ongoing innovation strategy. We have also introduced new pack sizes and formats to meet customer demand, and reduced Princes’ carbon footprint through increased efficiencies and the use of more environmentally-friendly carton materials.”
Princes also said the investment has elevated its efforts to reduce its carbon footprint through increased efficiencies to significantly reduce waste juice at the site by over 2,000 tonnes and the use of more environmentally-friendly carton materials.
The Welsh Government Minister for Rural Affairs and North Wales, and Trefnydd, Lesley Griffiths was delighted to officially open Princes’ expanded drinks facility following substantial investment which included £3m (US3.17m) of Welsh Government support.
He noted that the government has the vision to turn over the growth of Wales’s Food and Drink manufacturing sector to at least £8.5bn (US$8.97m) by 2025, and developments such as this in Cardiff will be important in helping it realize the aim.