By Andrew Starke

Coca-Cola Amatil and SABMiller have revealed plans to be a major player in the Australian beer market with the launch yesterday (Jul 29) of a new brewery on the Central Coast.

The Bluetongue Brewery has taken just 18 months to become operational and boasts global state-of-the-art brewing technology.

“You only need to look around to see what $120 million gets you,” said chairman of Pacific Beverages and group managing director of Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA), Terry Davis, as he welcomed employees, contractors and the media at the official opening.

Since being established four years ago, CCA and SABMiller’s join venture, Pacific Beverages, has cornered approximately 10 percent of the Australian premium beer market.

This statistic led Davis to quip that Pacific Beverages had accomplished in four years what it has taken the Coopers Brewery a hundred years to attain.

The CCA boss said that, aside from Bluetongue range, the brewery would also begin brewing SABMiller global brands like Millers, Grolsch and Peroni almost immediately.

While leveraging off SABMiller’s global beer portfolio is an easy option for Pacific Beverages, Davis warned beer rivals that the company would be looking at innovation in their product range and servicing premium, niche markets.

“We will innovate but we will also be prudent about where we chose to play,” he said.

Describing the Bluetongue Brewery as ‘a fair dinkum super-brewery’, MD: licensed/alcohol Coca-Cola Amatil, John Murphy, said the company would use the state-of-the-art brewing technology incorporated in the new brewery to create a clear advantage in the marketplace.

The brewery has an annual capacity of 50 million litres, equivalent to about 6.5 million cases, and is easily expandable to 150 million litres over time. Pacific Beverages hopes to have the Bluetongue Brewery running at 60 percent of capacity by Christmas.

Bluetongue Brewery is the first new brewery to be built in NSW in 40 years and is now the state’s second largest brewery.

Click on the video below to see Terry Davis officially opening the brewery.


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The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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