The new canning line will package Molson Coors’ 4% ABV hard seltzer brand Three Fold as well as support future innovation in the ready-to-drink category and premium beers.
Western Europe Managing director Phil Whitehead said: “The hard seltzer and ready-to-drink (RTD) categories present a huge opportunity for growth. The RTD category is the fastest growing in alcohol globally and, while it’s early days, we’re seeing strong indications that hard seltzers will prove as popular in Western Europe as they have in the US.
“This investment will allow us to scale up at speed and help our customers to rapidly respond to that growing demand from consumers in this quickly emerging category.”
Work to install the new hard seltzer canning line is due to begin in late 2021, with the first cans to be produced from the new line due in late spring 2022. Upgrades to the brewer’s beer and cider packaging lines to boost efficiencies are also expected to be completed by early 2022.
The upgrades are part of continuing modernisation programme at the Burton, which has already seen Molson Coors invest more than £100m into the brewery over the past 10 years.
“This latest round of investment demonstrates not only our commitment to grow our portfolio but also to our great brewing home and town of Burton,” Whitehead added.
“We’re proud to operate our biggest brewery here in Burton and with this investment we are continuing to cement the town’s role as the home of British brewing and a growing drinks industry.”
Molson Coors Burton brewery employs more than 1,000 members of staff and has been self-sufficient in CO2 production since 2018.
Work began in 2012 on a £75m project to redevelop the 34-hectare brewery estate, including the introduction of new brewing technology, followed by a new £28m canning line opened by then prime minister David Cameron in 2014.
Commenting on Molson Corrs latest investment, MP for Burton-upon-Trent Kate Griffiths said: “This investment by Molson Coors in its Burton brewery is a sign of their commitment to continued innovation here in the great brewing town of Burton.
“It is great news for the company and our town, coming as it does after a very tough year for the brewing and hospitality sector.”
Meanwhile, Princes has finished the first phase of a £60m investment in its Cardiff soft drinks factory – the largest spend on that division, which will take the company into new markets.