Heineken is investing in the next two years nearly 30 million Euros (US$34m) in its plant in Marseille, in the south of France. The leading brewer in France will enlarge the capacity of the brewery from currently 1.3 million hectoliters by 35% to 1.75 million hectoliter by adding a new line which will be operational by 2020. Heineken will hire a dozen more people which will bring the total workforce of the Marseille site to more than 140 employees.
The new line will be used to produce notably the flagship brand Heineken and the Belgium brand Affligem as well as the tequila-flavoured pale lager beer Desperados. Desparados was originally created in 1995 and produced by the BrasserieFischer in Schiltigheim near Strabourg, France. Since closure of the original brewing site in 2009, Desperados is being produced by Heineken’s Brasserie de l'Espérance, which is also located nearby in Schiltigheim. In February 2017, Heineken announced to enlarge the capacity of the Schiltigheim plant to 1.7 million hl in order to support further innovation and diversification across its Heineken, Fischer, Edelweiss and Desperados brands (inside.beer, 13.2.2017).
Heineken is operating three breweries in France: Schiltigheim in the West, Mons-en-Baroeul in the North and Marseille in the South. Since 2010, Heineken has already invested more than €100 million (US$117 million) in its three breweries in France notwithstanding the 30 million which will be invested now in Marseille.
This year in August, Kronenbourg, a subsidiary of Danish Carlsberg Group and Heineken’s direct rival in France, followed suit and announced plans to invest up to €100 million (US$117 million) in the Kronenbourg brewery in Obernai, France, Carlsberg’s largest brewery in Europe. (inside.beer, 29.8.2018)
Kronenbourg produces about 7 million hectoliters of beer which is nearly 40% of the national beer production and exports 20% of its production, including the brand 1664, which is marketed in 70 countries and is the best-selling French beer in the world.