Posted on 02 April 2012.
Scotland’s most historic and successful brewery, Tennent Caledonian Breweries, has opened a new £4 million state-of-the-art bottling line at its famous Wellpark site in Glasgow. Situated within Wellpark’s 2000 square metre packaging hall, the new £4 million line gives Tennent Caledonian the largest and most technologically advanced beer bottling operation in Scotland, with the capacity to run 50,000 bottles per hour – for Tennent’s brands and for contract business that will now be attracted to Scotland from across the UK.
Tennent Caledonian, which is now part of cider and beer producer C&C Group, has been brewing for over 450 years. The site also houses Tennent’s Training Academy, a £1 million centre of training excellence for the pub and hospitality industry.
The launch of the bottling line is part of an ambitious plan of growth and development at Tennent Caledonian, resulting from an inward investment programme from C&C Group following its purchase of the business in 2009. The development programme also includes: 50 new jobs created, both at the bottling line and in other areas of the business; a renaissance of the company’s international ambitions, with last year seeing Tennent’s Export once again being shipped to Ireland, Canada, Australia and Italy; and a renewed focus on new product development that has seen the company launch a major new beer for the Scottish market, Caledonia Best, which is made using barley sourced 100 per cent in Scotland.
In Ireland, Tennent’s Lager is now sold in over 1200 pubs. In Canada, Tennent’s was launched at the Toronto Beer Festival in September 2011 and has since gained scale with the support of a local distributor. Similarly, in Australia, Tennent’s was launched last July and is now listed in Australia’s top two leading supermarket chains. 2012 will also see a renewed emphasis on Italy, with the launch of a range of three new beers; Tennent’s Scotch Ale, Tennent’s 1885 Lager and Tennent’s Extra Lager.
Steven Annand, commercial managing director of Tennent Caledonian, comments: “Tennent’s is a very successful Scottish brand and C&C Group is focused on strengthening its domestic base here in Scotland, growing Tennent’s international markets and creating jobs here in Scotland in the process. Our new bottling line here at Wellpark will underpin this growth story and enable us to introduce new products both here in Scotland and overseas.
Tennent’s Lager is known as an industry pioneer, recognised as being the first commercial lager to be produced to scale in Scotland (and one of the first in the UK) and at the forefront of introducing canned and draught lager to the UK. Tennent Caledonian was one of the pioneers of bottled beer, with a patent for ‘stopped bottles’ secured back in the 1890s.
Pictured at the launch of the new bottling line are (left to right): Stephen Glancey, group chief executive of C&C Group; Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond, who opened the line; John Gilligan, sales managing director of Tennent Caledonian; and Steven Annand, commercial managing director of Tennent Caledonian.