The new facility involved the installation of seven new soft drink production lines as well as an upgrade and refurbishment of two existing lines. It has also seen the strengthening of the site’s warehousing and logistical capabilities and the building of a new Ingredient Processing Centre.
Princes’ Cardiff site produces fruit juices for Princes, Jucee and customer own-label products. Historically, it has produced one-litre, ambient juices, multipacks and ready to merchandise display units.
However, this investment, which is the group’s largest ever capital investment into soft drinks, has enabled the production of ambient, mini and chilled drinks. This has doubled overall production capacity and created 130 new jobs.
The investment has also enabled the expansion of Princes’ product range into new markets. Princes said this has enabled it to entre the ‘low and no alcohol’ category for the first time with its ‘Skinny Mixers’ range.
Princes Cardiff head of operations Ian Davies said: “We’re extremely pleased to have completed this investment programme and proud of what we’ve achieved at Princes Cardiff following several years of hard work by our teams and partners, throughout the height of the pandemic and beyond.”
He added: “The investment has significantly boosted our production capabilities and capacity, enabling entry into new categories as part of our ongoing innovation strategy. We have also introduced new pack sizes and formats to meet customer demand, and reduced Princes’ carbon footprint through increased efficiencies and the use of more environmentally-friendly carton materials.”
He revealed that the investment at the site meant the company was on track to significantly reduce waste juice at the site by over 2,000 tonnes.
The opening was recently hosted by the Welsh Government Minister for Rural Affairs and North Wales, and Trefnydd, Lesley Griffiths.
“I am very pleased to have officially opened Princes’ expanded drinks facility following substantial investment which included £3m of Welsh Government support,” she said.
“We have a vision here in Wales to see our Food and Drink manufacturing sector turnover grow to at least £8.5bn by 2025, and developments such as this in Cardiff will be important in helping us realise the aim.”
Princes Cardiff is one of the largest employers in the area with over 260 employees.