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New furnace increases amber capacity at Beatson Clark

A new amber glass furnace has gone into production at Beatson Clark after a £6.5 million building project was completed.

The new furnace has a larger melting area, improving Beatson Clark’s capacity to supply the growing market for craft beer bottles both in the UK and overseas. The melting area in the furnace has been increased by more than 6 sq m and can produce around 200 tonnes of glass per day.

Glass furnaces need to be completely rebuilt every ten years and this latest project is just part of a major £10 million investment which Beatson Clark has made in plant and equipment at its South Yorkshire site this year.

Marketing Manager Charlotte Taylor says, “We are selling a lot of amber glass at the moment and our new larger capacity furnace will help us to supply the small brewery market even more effectively. We’ve installed stirrers in the forehearths to improve the quality of the glass, and by widening them we can also get a greater pull from the furnace. The design has been improved too for greater efficiency and reduced CO2 emissions in line with new Government targets.”

The new equipment now utilises the flame length to burn more gas, thereby reducing NOx emissions by over 20%. Improvements to the regenerators and a greater wall height have increased the combustion volume, which means that more heat can be recycled. Meanwhile a new burner system with an oxygen trim facility ensures combustion is optimised, further increasing efficiency. A new six-section bottle forming machine has also been installed which will offer further flexibility to supply the smaller breweries.

Around eighty contractors have been involved in the rebuild and maintenance project, including Sheffield-based Tecoglas who designed the furnace, Chapman Brack who have undertaken the rebuild with D A Cooper, and Batts Engineering of Rotherham who fabricated and installed the structural furnace steelwork.

Beatson Clark’s Furnace Manager Dean Duke says, “Our staff have worked tremendously hard with all of the contractors involved in the rebuild to ensure a smooth installation. The new furnace and the major maintenance work that has been undertaken will enable us to continue to produce quality amber glass for our customers for years to come.”

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Corrugated packaging helps discounters secure larger market share

Supermarket discounters are the fastest growing European retail sector, thanks in part to corrugated Shelf Ready Packaging, according to the European Federation of Corrugated Board Manufacturers.

German discount pioneers Aldi and Lidl are the two front runners across the continent, enjoying growth and increasing market share. The Schwarz Group, owner of Lidl, and the Aldi group are forecast to grow by 5% and 3.5% respectively per annum for the next five years, compared with mainstream retailers at less than 2%.

The success of the discounters is being aided by corrugated packaging’s eye-catching designs and its efficiency within the shelf replenishment process. Over 90% of the discounters' products use SRP, compared with only about 40% of non-discounters.

At Lidl stores a whole cross-section of food and household items are attractively displayed in corrugated SRP. Lidl also uses corrugated as part of its merchandising strategy, which involves printing a flag of country of origin on boxes and cartons in the fresh produce section. SRP provides significant cost savings - with canned foods, for example, shelf-refill costs are a third lower for products displayed in SRP than those displayed individually.

Angelika Christ, FEFCO’s Secretary General, says, “Corrugated has become an integral part of the discounter retail business model, because it’s great for display and great for reducing cost. That’s why corrugated is, and will remain, the number one choice for discounters.”

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GCS gives greater freedom to coffee lovers

Global Closure Systems has developed a bespoke closure solution to help Nestlé Coffee-mate 2GO satisfy the lifestyle expectations of on-the-go coffee drinkers in North America.

Launched in late 2014, Nestlé’s new Coffee-mate 2GO creamer dispenser incorporates a silicone valve sub-assembly designed and manufactured by Zeller Plastik, GCS’s production plant in Libertyville, Illinois.

Coffee-mate 2GO is a conveniently sized, 90ml portable creamer that doesn’t require refrigeration, allowing consumers to transform their ordinary cup of coffee anywhere and at any time. Peter Goshorn, Sales & Marketing Director, GCS Americas, says, “The silicone valve has been specifically designed to perfectly match the product formulation. The closure’s red glossy finish offers stand-out, on-shelf appeal, while the need for tamper evidence is provided by a full body sleeve."

Nestlé, which introduced Coffee-mate in 1961 as the first “non-dairy creamer” on the market, says GCS has met all the technical requirements and specifications of its brand. Cyrille Durand, Group Manager, Technical Packaging, Nestlé USA, says, “Zeller Plastik’s collaboration on the cap development and execution for Coffee-mate 2GO helped us develop the perfect solution for the loyal Coffee-mate consumer who needs a portable creamer. The market for enjoying coffee outside of the home continues to grow and developing Coffee-mate in a practical, ready-to-go offering meets the lifestyle of today’s consumer.”

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