Princes ploughs £15M into bottled water site

By Noli Dinkovski

- Last updated on GMT

Eden Valley: work beings on extending and redeveloping the site next summer
Eden Valley: work beings on extending and redeveloping the site next summer

Related tags: Bottled water, Water

Princes Group is to extend and redevelop its bottled water site in Eden Valley, Cumbria, in a £15M project starting next June.

Work will include a factory extension to accommodate a new bottling line. A new office block will also be built, housing a new laboratory and an engineering workshop, along with a staff canteen and changing room facilities.

Four new engineering jobs will be created at the site, which currently employs 130 people.

The investment will also increase capacity and offer environmental benefits such as reduced road miles to off-site storage and the ability for further light-weighting of water bottles to reduce packaging.

Water sales

It comes on the back of strong sales for the bottled water market. According to data provider IRI, sales of bottled water in supermarkets grew by 12.2% to £871M for the year to January 3 2015, making it the fourth biggest soft drinks category by value and the fastest growing.

Ruth Simpson, corporate relations director at Princes, said the investment is part of a continual investment programme that will support plans to grow its natural mineral water Aqua Pura.

“This strategic investment consolidates Princes’ position as one of the UK’s leading soft drinks suppliers and reflects the strength and scale of the bottled water market,”​ said Simpson.

“We are committed to ensuring our sites have the capacity and technological capabilities to not only meet customer needs now but also provide a platform for long-term future growth.”

What £15M buys:

  • A bottling line
  • An engineering workshop
  • A staff canteen
  • Changing room facilities
  • Four new engineering jobs
  • A capacity increase
  • Reduced road miles to off-site storage
  • Further light-weighting of water bottles

Production line

Since being bought by Princes in 2004, investment at the Eden Valley site has included the installation of a high speed production line, a natural reed bed to minimise waste water and a new purpose built warehouse, which opened in January 2012.

The site draws natural mineral water from what is believed to be one of Europe’s largest aquifers.

The purity of the five accredited natural mineral water sources is protected because the site is set in an EU Special Area of Conservation.

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