Ball Corporation, one of the world's leading manufacturers of aluminium beverage packaging headquartered in Westminster, Colorado, is planning to significantly increase its manufacturing capacity, with two new facilities in the UK and Russia to meet the growing demand for aluminium packaging around the world.
Each facility would produce, from 2023, billions of cans a year across a range of formats and sizes, and provide up to 200 skilled jobs.
The announcement about the construction of new beverage can manufacturing facilities in Europe complements similar announcements for North America.
New products, like hard seltzers which are predominantly sold in cans but also the increased demand for cans in multipacks during the COVID-19 lock-down have created a shortage for this type of packaging. Producers of cans have already reacted and increased production in its existing domestic plants but have also started importing greater quantities of cans from Mexico or from overseas.
Crown Holdings (CCK) formerly Crown Cork & Seal Company, located in Yardley, Pennsylvania, announced in February 2020, shortly before the pandemic started in the United Sates, to build a new beverage can manufacturing facility in Bowling Green, Kentucky to be operational in the second quarter of 2021. (inside.beer, 22.7.2020)
Ball Corporation said in September that it has chosen Pittston, Pennsylvania, as the location of a new multi-line plant which is scheduled to begin production in mid-2021. (inside.beer, 02.09.2020)
Finally Ardagh Group, a global supplier in glass and metal packaging solutions based in Luxembourg, announced in November to add two new high-speed beverage can manufacturing lines at its Olive Branch, Mississippi, facility. (inside.beer, 01.11.2020)
In the UK, Ball has identified a site at the SEGRO Park Kettering Gateway, an established industrial development in Northamptonshire. Ball has submitted its formal application to North Northamptonshire Council and anticipates breaking ground during 2021, following a period of public consultation.
The planned Kettering plant will represent Ball's third beverage can manufacturing facility in the UK, adding capacity to its established plants in Milton Keynes and Wakefield. The plant will supply cans for domestic customers in a growing range of categories, which now includes hard seltzers, wines, ready to drink cocktails, together with pure and enhanced water brands.
To serve the fast growing Russian market, especially in the beer and energy drinks categories, Ball is planning to build a plant in Ulyanovsk in Western Russia. Ball Beverage Packaging Naro-Fominsk has signed a cooperation agreement for its construction with the Ulyanovsk Regional Government, who in June also awarded the development 'Highly Significant Investment Project' status.
The Ulynavosk plant will take the total in Russia to four, with established manufacturing facilities in Naro-Fominsk, Moscow Region; Vesvolozhsk, St. Petersburg Region; and Argayash, Chelyabinsk Region.
Ball Corporation and its subsidiaries employ 21,500 people worldwide and reported 2020 net sales of USD 11.8 billion. The company’s main products are aluminium drinks cans which are one of the world's most widely recycled beverage packaging with an 82% recycling rate in the UK and 76% across Europe.
Carey Causey, President, Ball Beverage Packaging EMEA said: "With the demand for our infinitely recyclable aluminium packaging growing fast in an expanding number of categories, we are acting now to support our customers in the UK and Russia. The pandemic and changing consumption patterns mean that consumers are enjoying more of their favourite beverages at home and on-the-go and want to buy products in packages that they know will be recycled and can contribute to a truly circular economy."
Rudi Leenards, General Director, Ball Beverage Packaging Naro-Fominsk said: "We are firmly committed to the Russian market and are pleased to support so many of our domestic customers enjoying unprecedented demand. With sustainability a key concern for the next generation of consumers, we anticipate infinitely recyclable aluminium packages to play a growing role in the development of a truly circular economy that will be embraced in Russia and beyond."