Reliability, environment-friendliness and viability for the future are values held by filling and packaging systems supplier KHS that Portugal-based brewery Sociedade Central de Cervejas E Bebidas S.A. (SCC) greatly appreciates – and has done for decades.
The commissioning of the new glass line is a further milestone in the long-term partnership between the two companies.
By employing up-to-the-minute technology from the systems supplier, the beer producer from SCC has minimised both its water and energy consumption and its carbon emissions.
SCC has placed its trust in plant technology from KHS for more than 34 years.
“Back then, we heard that KHS was an exemplary supplier of future-proof filling systems. Over the decades, a close and trusting relationship has been built up. KHS has always convinced us with its excellent state-of-the-art technology and outstanding service,” says SCC corporate affairs head Pinto de Magalhães.
The brewery, which is chiefly famous for its Sagres brand, has continuously invested in new lines and systems in the last years, including a keg line in 2016.
“Currently, all the key filling and packaging machines in Vialonga, in Portugal, have been constructed by KHS,” says KHS Portugal sales director Frank Schneidermann.
He adds that, at the beginning of 2018, KHS was awarded a contract for a new glass line.
“After 20 years, the old glass line simply wasn’t state of the art anymore regarding its energy consumption,” he says.
Schneidermann explains that the initial situation was challenging as the brewery could only fill its one-litre bottles on this particular line.
As a result, the old line had to be dismantled and the new glass line installed very quickly to keep production loss down to a minimum during this time.
“Owing to the extremely precise advance planning and professional teamwork, machine replacement went very quickly and without any hitches,” says SCC supply chain director Jose Luis da Mata Torres.
A KHS Innofill Glas DRS glass bottling machine forms the heart of the new line.
With its computer-controlled filling system, the Heineken subsidiary has an increased output of up to 55 000, 330 mℓ /h bottles.
The multiple-format system can process bottles holding between 250 mℓ and 1.0 ℓ. The hygienic quicklock fast-acting locking system cuts changeover times down to a minimum.
The proven filling system’s low consumption of resources is also compelling.
The new vacuum pump reduces the amount of water used by up to 96%, for example.
“That’s more than 32-million litres of water a year,” says Schneidermann.
He adds that the new line further saves on resources with its low energy consumption. It reduces carbon emissions by up to 12 600 kWh, or 80-million tonnes, a year than on a standard setup.
In addition to the DRS, the new glass line also includes a rinser and two closure systems blocked with the glass filler.
The brewery, founded in 1934, can now seal its bottles not just with crown corks but also with roll-on and ring-pull closure pull-tab caps.
The brewers also invested in a tunnel pasteuriser, labeller and wrap-around shrink packer from KHS. A palletiser and depalletiser round off the line.
“With our new glass line, we’re perfectly set up for the future, regarding both efficiency and sustainability,” says De Magalhães.
Schneidermann says the beer market in Portugal is very important for KHS. “About 90% of all beer is filled by our machines.”
He explains that the turnkey supplier works closely with Portugal’s biggest breweries, with which SCC is also affiliated.
As a result, KHS chief sales officer Johannes T Grobe, and Portuguese Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Economy Pedro Siza Vieira were both present at the opening ceremony for the new line.
In his speech, Grobe praised SCC as “a company which perfectly masters the balancing act between tradition and future-orientated technology”.