Competition growing in the winery and brewery industry

15th November 2019 By: Khutso Maphatsoe - journalist

Over the past few years, the number of micro, craft and artisanal companies entering the winery and brewery industries has increased, making these industries more competitive and leading to more producers adopting multi-product lines in the manufacturing process.

“This has placed pressure on industrial or mass producers to keep up with consumer tastes and corporate retail demands for new flavours, fashions and fads, which, in turn, continue to create growing demand for an ever-greater quantity of product lines,” says pumps manufacturer Verder Pumps South Africa MD Darryl Macdougall.

He adds that current market trends and the growing demand for more products, flavours and product lines are somewhat contrary to the operation of traditional dedicated process lines, where there is one pipe-run for one product.

“For example, manufacturers would previously have focused on one speciality beer, wine or spirits, and if the company wanted to expand their flavour line, they would look to build more production lines.”

This would mean recommissioning an existing line or suffer downtime cleaning and turning around a line in operation. However, doing so could mean significant losses in production output, adds Macdougall.

He explains that, currently, modern facilities have moved from a dedicated production line for each product to an innovative multi-product line. This ensures that several different liquids or flavours are processed daily.

“This has placed a lean, flexible manufacturing process as the engine of successful operations, while the manufacturing process needs to be consistent and reliable.

“This is done to accommodate perishable ingredients, storage and short lead times for retail clients and requires maintaining a safe and hygienic production line.”

Subsequently, production efficiencies and product quality remain key performance indicators for brewers, wineries and distilleries, says Macdougall.

“Mass, micro and artisanal breweries, wineries and distilleries have to comply with impeccable standards of hygiene and processes to ensure product quality and safety. Therefore, it is crucial to not only protect consumers and end-users but also guarantee the signature taste of their products,” he says.

To produce high-quality products consistently and reduce waste throughout the production process, Macdougall says it is important to have a manufacturing environment that meets and exceeds the hygienic standards.

To achieve this, companies’ machines have to be 100% reliable and safe while allowing for optimal production performance.

Verder Pumps South Africa has a range of solutions that can be integrated throughout the mechanics of the production process. These solutions offer significant benefits that boast value for money, guarantee process continuity and provide optimal support in pump maintenance.

The solutions offer hygienic compliance and perfect cleanability with no contamination and operational efficiencies, with reduced energy cost and water consumption.

Macdougall adds that, at the heart of the company’s range of pumping solutions that are fit-for-purpose for wineries, breweries and distilleries are the JEC range of hygienic pumps, “because they eliminate any risk of contaminants during production”.

For example, the JEC JRZS series of Twin-Screw Pumps, which is newly available in South Africa, was designed for reliable pumping – from low to high viscous, volatile or gaseous products and applications – to fulfil the utmost hygiene and efficiency requirements, such as those of European Hygienic Equipment Design Group- and 3-A-certified manufacturing processes.

The JEC JRZW pumps series are the best choice for the winemaking process as the ZW series has been specifically designed and built for the red winemaking process, to provide the most efficient and cost-effective pumping solution when the total cost of ownership is considered.

Also, the company has a range of specialist stainless steel Packo hygienic centrifugal pumps, which have been successfully installed in brewing and distilling processes across the world in both hot and cold processes. The entire range is subject to electropolishing as standard, which improves the cleanability and resistance to corrosion.

In addition to the hygiene ranges is the Verderflex peristaltic pump ranges, which are purpose-built to handle abrasive and solid-laden fluids that would clog and cause excessive wear in other pumps. For the precise delivery of additives, yeast solutions and for cleaning-in-place chemicals into a system, the Verderflex pumps offer a highly reliable solution.

“It’s all about selecting the right pumping solutions for the application, as this will help ensure the machines perform optimally, while still handling the products with care and upholding today’s hygiene standards throughout the production process, to get the perfect taste every time,” concludes Macdougall.