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    12.04.2018   USA: Craft beer export volume up 3.6% in 2017    ( E-malt.com )

    The Brewers Association (BA) — the not-for-profit trade group representing small and independent craft brewers of the United States — reported on April 3 export growth data for the American craft beer industry in 2017.

    Supported by the BA’s Export Development Program (EDP), craft beer export volume increased by 3.6 percent in 2017, now totaling 482,309 barrels and valued at $125.4 million.

    Growth was seen in major markets including in the Asia-Pacific region (not including Japan) which grew 7.4 percent; Japan, which was up 2.6 percent and Western Europe which saw exports increase by 1.3 percent.

    Meanwhile, Canada was again the leading international market for American craft beer, accounting for 51.3 percent of total exports. Other leading importers were the United Kingdom, accounting for 10.5 percent; Sweden, 6.7 percent; Korea, 4.6 percent; Australia, with 3.8 percent; and China, with 2.5 percent of exports.

    “From innovative styles to international distribution, American craft beer is breaking boundaries,” said Steve Parr, export development program manager, Brewers Association. “Through the Brewers Association Export Development Program, we’re able to take the success of local brewers and showcase them on a global scale.”

    The EDP, which generates exposure for American craft beer through trade shows, festivals, seminars, media outreach and competitions, among other activities, was initiated in 2004 with funds from the United States Department of Agriculture Market Access Program (USDA MAP). There are currently more than 100 small and independent brewers exporting their beers from the U.S., by EDP estimates.

     
    11.04.2018   Rotkäppchen-Mumm to acquire Eggers & Franke    ( Company news )

    Company news On May 1st 2018 Rotkäppchen-Mumm Sektkellereien GmbH, a global leader in the production of sparkling wine, spirits and wine will acquire the Eggers & Franke Group, one of Germany’s leading providers of high-quality wines and spirits. The acquisition is still subject to the approval by the German antitrust authorities.

    Together with its subsidiaries, Eggers & Franke Group will continue to operate independently under the leadership of its longstanding management team. Christoph Meier, Eggers & Franke owner, will oversee the transition and continue as a consultant to the business.

    ’We couldn’t have wished for a better partner for the future of our successful company. Like Eggers & Franke, Rotkäppchen-Mumm stands for sustainable entrepreneurship with a sense of proportion and continuity. This is an excellent basis for writing the next chapter of the Eggers & Franke success story together with our global partners,’ says Meier.

    Rotkäppchen-Mumm CEO, Christof Queisser states ‘We are delighted to welcome such a traditional and successful company into our fold. Both family-run businesses complement each other perfectly. The Eggers & Franke Group will become another important pillar on the national core market of Rotkäppchen-Mumm.’

    Details of the transaction remain confidential. 
    (Rotkäppchen-Mumm Sektkellereien GmbH)
     
    10.04.2018   Scotch Whisky industry to set out clear calorie information to consumers    ( Company news )

    Company news The Scotch Whisky Association has welcomed joint proposals by European alcoholic beverage producers on how the industry will provide consumers with nutrition and ingredient information.

    The proposal, submitted to Commissioner Andriukaitis today in Brussels, commits the beer, wine and spirits industries to provide nutrition and ingredient information to consumers by 2022. This follows the European Commission's 2017 report which asked producers from different alcoholic beverage sectors to put forward a joint proposal to provide consumers with meaningful, clear and easy to understand information.

    Plans are being taken forward by Scotch Whisky producers to provide energy information on-label, showing consumers how many calories are in a standard 25ml serving of Scotland's national drink.

    Commenting, Chief Executive of the Scotch Whisky Association Karen Betts (photo) said:
    "The SWA and the industry want all consumers to enjoy Scotch Whisky responsibly. So it's important that consumers have the information they need to make the right choices that fit with a healthy lifestyle, including on calorie intake.
    "We're very pleased to endorse today's commitment to provide calorie information on labels, and to report on progress in October 2019.
    "We believe this information should be provided in a format that is easy to understand and linked to serving sizes."
    (SWA The Scotch Whisky Association)
     
    09.04.2018   Flying ink drops: printing 2000 products per minute    ( Company news )

    Company news Label & Print 2018 in Zurich: Leibinger is presenting the JET3up industrial inkjet printer (Hall 4, Stand H14)

    At a bottling plant, a mineral water bottle speeds along a conveyor belt moving at 36 km/h. A few milliseconds later, the best-before date appears as if by magic on the bottleneck. This is made possible by Leibinger’s JET3up industrial inkjet printer, which prints up to 2000 products per minute with flying drops of ink.

    Photo: The JET3up in operation: the ink drops fly out of the print head, directly onto the product. They dry in less than a second.

    Information such as best-before date, batch number and data matrix codes have become an integral part of most products. You can find the small letters and graphics on water bottles, milk cartons and beverage cans, on printed circuit boards for computers and on transparent medication packaging. If manufacturers call back batches, this information needs to be easy to read for consumers – smudged fonts cannot be tolerated by a manufacturer. The challenge is to guarantee imprint quality even at high line speeds.

    The JET3up prints products that speed by at 36 km/h
    At the Label & Print 2018 trade fair in Zurich (11.-12. April 2018), Leibinger will be showcasing the JET3up – an industrial inkjet printer that keeps up with belt speeds of 600 meters per minute. “The printer is fast enough to mark up to 2000 products per minute in passing,” explains Christina Leibinger, CEO of Paul Leibinger GmbH & Co. KG. “In spite of these high belt speeds, an exceptionally good typeface quality is guaranteed."

    The JET3up is used, for instance, in the food and beverage industry, in electronics and cable production, and in car manufacturing facilities. It can print not only up to five-line small fonts, but also graphics, barcodes and all common data matrix codes with a print height of up to 16 mm. Operation is via a 10.4” touchscreen that is as intuitive to use as a smartphone. If the user integrates the printer into the company network, he or she can control the machine from literally any point on the globe and monitor it with a PC, smartphone or tablet.

    The principle of flying ink drops
    The JET3up prints without having to touch any products. How is this possible? With a cylindrical print head mounted next to or above the conveyor belt – with which a head pipe of up to ten meters in length is connected to the hydraulic system in the printer housing. The heart of the so-called continuous-injection (CIJ) technology works inside the print head. 120,000 electrically charged ink drops per second shoot through a nozzle in the direction of a collecting tube. When printing, two deflection electrodes come into play. They change the trajectory of individual drops, so that they land as an image point or pixel on the product surface. The remaining drops fly into a catcher tube and circulate in the system.

    Printing 160 million characters with one liter of ink
    Non-contact printing always produces good results – with convex and concave, rough and smooth, flat and relief-like product surfaces alike. Smudging is ruled out since the ink dries on glass, plastic, metal, steel and wood in less than a second. The JET3up is also economical in consumption. One liter of ink is sufficient for printing up to 160 million characters.

    Leibinger’s CIJ printers are considered to be the most reliable in the world. This is ensured, among other things, by Leibinger’s unique Sealtronic nozzle sealing system. “With many CIJ print heads, the nozzle and catcher tube remain open when the printer is out of service or in standby mode. The ink dries up, the nozzle clogs, so that the next time it starts up, it can lead to a diffuse spluttering or ink and an indistinct typeface,” explains Christina Leibinger. “This is not the case with Leibinger. With our patented Sealtronic sealing system, the catcher tube moves to the nozzle during production breaks and seals the system airtight. When re-starting, the typeface is instantly clear and stable – without cleaning and rinsing cycles, production starts again immediately. This is a must in any efficient production environment.”
    (Paul Leibinger GmbH & Co. KG)
     
    09.04.2018   Symrise fulfills 2017 targets and dynamically starts into current fiscal year    ( Company news )

    Company news — Sales up by 3.2 % to € 2,996.3 million – adjusted for portfolio and currency effects organic growth of 6.3 %
    — EBITDA increase to € 630.3 million
    — EBITDA margin at a very healthy 21.0 %
    — Net income up 2 % to € 270.3 million
    — Dividend increase to € 0.88 per share proposed

    Symrise AG achieved profitable growth in the fiscal year 2017 and reached all of its targets. The Group increased sales by 3.2 % to € 2,996.3 million (2016: € 2,903.2 million). Excluding portfolio and currency effects, organic sales growth even amounted to 6.3 %. Symrise profited especially from the dynamic performance of the Flavor and Nutrition segments and strong demand in the EAME and Latin America regions. Despite currency effects and investments into the expansion of capacities, the Group raised its EBITDA by 1 % to € 630.3 million (2016 normalized: € 625.2 million). With an EBITDA margin of 21.0 %, Symrise exceeded its 20.0 % target and was once again one of the most profitable companies in the industry (2016 normalized: 21.5 %).

    "2017 was yet again a successful year for Symrise. For the twelfth year in a row we achieved very satisfactory increases in sales and earnings, especially in terms of organic growth. Despite further investments into our expansion, volatile exchange rates and rising raw material prices over the course of the year, we operated yet again highly profitable. To allow our shareholders to participate in this success, the Executive Board and Supervisory Board will therefore propose a dividend of € 0.88 at the Annual General Meeting," said Dr. Heinz-Jürgen Bertram, CEO of Symrise AG. "We are also optimistic about our prospects in 2018. We have made a dynamic start and feel confident that, with our strong market position, increased internal sourcing of raw materials, and the targeted expansion of capacity, we are very well positioned."

    Dynamic organic growth in sales
    Symrise increased its sales to € 2,996.3 million (2016: € 2,903.2 million) and benefited from strong organic growth of 6.3 %. Taking portfolio effects into account – in particular the sale of the industrial activities of Pinova in December 2016 and the acquisitions of Nutraceutix, Nutra Canada and Cobell – as well as exchange rate effects, sales grew by 3.2 %.

    Strong demand especially in Latin America and EAME
    The largest sales growth was realized in Latin America, where sales were up by a substantial 7.6 %. Sales in North America showed a 4.1 % year-on-year decrease due to the divestment of Pinova's industrial activities in December 2016. The Asia/Pacific region achieved a modest increase of 1.4 %. With a strong 7.4 % rise in sales, the EAME region showed an even more dynamic development than in the previous year.

    The share of Emerging Markets in the Group's total sales was slightly higher, at 44 % (2016: 43 %). Symrise achieved an overall 7.6 % increase in sales at local currency in those countries.

    High profitability maintained
    Despite unfavorable currency effects, higher costs for raw materials and investments in expansion, Symrise was able to increase its EBITDA to € 630.3 million (2016 normalized: € 625.2 million). At the same time, the Group was highly profitable, with a very good EBITDA margin of 21.0 % (2016 normalized: 21.5 %).

    Net income of the Group increased 1.8 % to € 270.3 million (2016 normalized: € 265.5 million). Earnings per share improved to € 2.08 (2016 normalized: € 2.05). The Executive Board and Supervisory Board will therefore propose an increase in the dividend from € 0.85 to € 0.88 per share at the Annual General Meeting on 16 May 2018.

    Increase in operating cash flow
    The Group grew its operating cash flow by approximately 17 % to € 396.2 million (2016: € 338.8 million), mainly as a result of higher earnings and a lower increase in working capital.

    At the reporting date, net debt including provisions for pensions and similar obligations was € 49.2 million lower, at € 1,921.6 million (2016: € 1,970.8 million). The ratio of net debt, including provisions for pensions and similar obligations, to EBITDA stood at 3.0 (31 December 2016: 3.1). Due to the realized acquisitions, the value is temporarily above Symrise’s target corridor of 2.0 to 2.5.

    The equity ratio increased from 36.4 % at the end of 2016 to 37.8 % at 31 December 2017. Therefore, Symrise has a solid capital base to continue advancing the Group's future sustainable development.

    Scent & Care segment
    The Scent & Care segment achieved total sales of € 1,263.1 million (2016: € 1,311.3 million). This yearon-year decrease of 3.7 % resulted from the sale of the industrial activities of Pinova in December 2016 and a slower first half of the year. Adjusted for portfolio and exchange rate effects, the segment reported healthy organic growth of 3.9 % – buoyed in particular by the strong fourth quarter, with an increase of 5.8 %. The strongest growth was posted by the Cosmetic Ingredients division. Strong demand was seen especially in the Asia/Pacific and EAME regions.

    EBITDA in the Scent & Care segment amounted to € 248.1 million (2016 normalized: € 257.8 million). The 3.8 % decrease reflects higher raw material costs, the sale of the Pinova industrial activities and expenses for research and development. The EBITDA margin remained stable at 19.6 % (2016 normalized: 19.7 %).

    Flavor segment
    Sales in the Flavor segment increased to € 1,101.9 million in the year under review (2016: € 1,015.9 million). The segment achieved very strong growth of 8.5 %. Excluding the portfolio effect from the acquisition of Cobell and currency effects, organic growth amounted to a very healthy 9.3 %.

    All regions and application areas contributed to the positive sales development. The segment continued the successful trend of recent years, particularly in Europe, Africa and the Middle East (EAME) as well as in North America. Growth was particularly strong in the Sweets and Beverages application areas as a result of new business with vanilla flavorings.

    EBITDA in the Flavor segment amounted to € 242.9 million (2016: € 233.8 million). This represents a 3.9 % increase as compared with 2016. The EBITDA margin was a very satisfactory 22.0 % (2016: 23.0 %).

    Nutrition segment
    Nutrition posted a substantial 9.6 % year-on-year plus in sales to € 631.3 million (2016: € 576.0 million). Adjusted for portfolio and currency effects, organic sales growth in the segment amounted to 6.5 %.

    The pet food application area was again one of the strongest growth drivers, with at least single-digit and sometimes even double-digit sales growth in local currency in all four regions.

    The segment increased its EBITDA by 4.3 % to € 139.4 million (2016: € 133.7 million). The EBITDA margin was at an outstanding 22.1 % (2016: 23.2 %).

    Confident outlook for 2018
    After a dynamic start in the first quarter, Symrise is confident for the further development in the fiscal year 2018. The Group is expecting a healthy global economic growth. However, the debt situation of some countries will continue and some currencies will remain volatile. Moreover, Symrise expects overall raw material costs to increase significantly. The Group has been actively pursuing backward integration in key natural raw materials for years. As a result, Symrise is in a good position through close cooperation with producers and long-term contracts.

    For the current fiscal year, Symrise remains committed to its target of growing faster than the relevant market at Group and segment levels. Estimates place worldwide market growth in the 3–4 % range. Moreover, despite the currently tense raw material situation, Symrise intends to maintain its strong profitability, and is therefore targeting an EBITDA margin of around 20 %.

    Symrise is also reaffirming its objectives set for the end of the fiscal year 2020: a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5–7 % and an EBITDA margin in the range of 19–22 %.
    (Symrise AG)
     
    06.04.2018   KHS exhibits extended PET portfolio at NPE2018 in Orlando    ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: White wine in a FreshSafe PET® bottle - Sensitive products can also be filled into transparent plastic packaging thanks to KHS’ FreshSafe PET® coating method

    Extremely light single-serve formats, wide-neck and oval packaging solutions and powerful, compact machines.

    - Wide-neck containers and oval packaging solutions
    - FreshSafe PET® coating method for optimum protection
    - Extremely light PET bottle for still water

    Extremely light single-serve formats, wide-neck and oval packaging solutions and powerful, compact machines: from May 7–11, 2018, the KHS Group will be presenting its extended PET portfolio at Booth S12045 at the NPE Plastics Show in Orlando, Florida.

    “A clear trend can be detected within the beverage industry," says Frank Haesendonckx, head of Sales and Technology at KHS Corpoplast in Hamburg, Germany. “The demand for single-serve packs holding between 250 and 800 millimeters is on the rise. We’ve thus developed a new version of our tried-and-tested InnoPET Blomax stretch blow molder especially for this segment.” The system is more compact and at the same time more powerful. The central new feature are its small mold carriers which enable up to 2,500 containers per hour and station to be manufactured.

    The stretch blow molder is available as a modular design. Depending on user requirements it can be blocked with other KHS systems – such as the Innosept Asbofill for the hygienic filling of sensitive products, for instance. The new KHS chunk dosing unit for flexible product design can also be integrated into the system. This permits fruit, vegetables or cereals up to 10 x 10 x 10 millimeters in size to be added. “We’re vastly expanding the application options and are thus supplying systems for new markets,” claims Haesendonckx.

    At NPE2018 KHS will also be presenting its extremely light packaging solutions. The Dortmund systems provider expects its Factor 100 0.5-liter PET bottle for still water to attract plenty of attention. With its expertise in lightweighting KHS offers its customers holistic consultancy from the design through the technical engineering to the production of their PET bottles. This produces individual containers tailored to suit the required functionality and load. “This allows users to make vast savings in materials while providing the best possible bottle stability,” states Haesendonckx.

    Extremely precise neck handling
    Further developments as regards preferential heating will also be in focus at the trade show. This setup enables the production of oval containers with an efficient distribution of materials and wide-neck containers with openings measuring up to 70 millimeters and permits extremely precise neck handling – while ensuring a high bottle quality and low energy consumption in the stretch blow molding process. “Wide-neck systems and special packaging forms are also gaining in significance,” explains Haesendonckx. The reason for this lies in the known advantages over glass: unbreakability, a lower weight and the option of inline production, as containers no longer have to be supplied to the plant but can be produced on site.

    Optimum protection for sensitive products
    Another KHS development which will be on show is FreshSafe PET®. This gives sensitive juices and carbonated soft drinks perfect protection by covering the inside wall of the PET container with a wafer-thin layer of silicon oxide (SiOx). “With our innovative barrier technology beverages have a shelf life which is comparable to those bottled in glass,” says Haesendonckx. This coating method also protects sensitive foods such as tomato sauce, fruit and vegetables – even in transparent PET containers.
    (KHS USA)
     
    05.04.2018   SIG and Amcor push responsible aluminium sourcing further    ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: Most of SIG’s carton packs are on average made of 75% paper board, 21% polymers and 4% aluminium. Following its responsibility approach entitled WAY BEYOND GOOD, the company is committed to sourcing 100% of its direct materials from only certified sources. Photo: SIG

    Following its responsibility approach entitled WAY BEYOND GOOD, SIG is committed to sourcing 100% of its direct materials from only certified sources. Working together with value chain partner Amcor, the partnership aims to assure that the aluminium foil supply chain is working towards the performance standard of the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI, https://aluminium-stewardship.org/). Amcor, a global leader in responsible packaging, is one of SIG's main suppliers for aluminium in Europe.

    A razor-thin aluminium layer is used in most of SIG’s carton packs to protect the food from light, oxygen and external odours.

    The new ASI performance standard reveals principles that must be met along the supply chain of aluminium and covers the main sustainability risks and potential impacts such as significant energy use and the release of greenhouse gases in the process to converting bauxite ore into aluminium, impacts on local communities and natural habitats from mining, and the potential for water pollution from production waste.

    ASI has recently launched a new Certification programme for the aluminium value chain, which focuses on responsible production, sourcing and stewardship of this important industrial metal. The new program aims at addressing and reducing the impacts of aluminium production: from mines, smelters and casting to semi-fabrication and manufacture of products containing aluminium.

    Both SIG and Amcor support ASI’s initiative as very effective in creating long-term consensus on standards. Such initiatives often take considerable time to be adopted throughout the industry, however, so to start this important work as early as possible SIG and Amcor engaged the trusted third party verification body DNV GL to conduct pilot assessments.

    Collaborative approach
    Dr Christian Bauer, Manager Environmental Affairs and Product Related Sustainability, of SIG said: “Our aim is clear. This is not a pass/fail exercise, but a collaborative approach to share industry best practices and ensure we are at the forefront of sourcing aluminium foil that will meet or surpass the ASI performance standards, ensuring continuous environmental improvement as well as best in class ethical practices.”

    The pilot looks at the value chain of aluminium foil all the way to the bauxite mines and is intended to provide a snapshot of performance against the ASI Performance Standard. Dr Colin Morgan, Principal Consultant at DNV GL, said: “Engaging suppliers on improving sustainability performance from mine to manufacturing is a challenging task. We are proud to work together with SIG and Amcor to bring visibility over their supply chains, build capacity and help all stakeholders to get ready for ASI through our pilot audits. This is a pioneering approach to multi-tier engagement that delivers value and benefits for all involved.”

    In 2017, collaborative assessments with value chain partners were completed in Europe and Asia for the manufacturing of aluminium foil and foil stock. The pilots provided a readiness check to close gaps against ASI standard requirements, and acknowledged any existing certifications the sites already have – ensuring a streamlined approach and value creation for everyone.

    Dr Gerald Rebitzer, Sustainability Director at Amcor said: “What we found was that the performance of the assessed sites generally aligns very well with the requirements of the ASI performance standard, and we are already working with the suppliers to close any gaps. The results are very encouraging.”

    At the forefront
    In 2018, SIG and Amcor will go further down the value chain. With this ongoing program and the subsequent planned ASI certification, both SIG and Amcor are confident that they will be well prepared to be at the forefront of offering packaging with responsibly sourced aluminium foil. SIG has already been at the forefront of sourcing from responsibly managed forests with 100% of its liquid packaging board from paper mills with the FSCTM Chain of Custody certification and 89% made with wood from FSCTM certified forests (FSCTM trademark licence code: FSCTM C020428). Since 2017 SIG is also certified according to ISCC PLUS in view of sourcing of renewable feedstock for polymers.

    This new collaboration with Amcor to push responsible aluminium sourcing further is another important step on SIG’s net-positive journey of going WAY BEYOND GOOD. The company is focusing on three core areas in which it can do the most for society and the environment, with responsibility at the centre of this: how SIG runs the company, sources its materials, and manufactures its products.
    (SIG Combibloc Group AG)
     
    04.04.2018   Symrise AG: Executive Board contract of CFO Olaf Klinger extended ahead of schedule    ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: Olaf Klinger

    — Supervisory Board reaffirms Olaf Klinger as CFO until January 2024
    — Recognition of successful work in finance department
    — Symrise relies on commitment to continuity and stability combined with further growth

    The Supervisory Board of Symrise AG approved an early contract extension for CFO Olaf Klinger at its meeting on March 7, 2018. With his profound knowledge and extensive experience in the field, Olaf Klinger will continue to manage the finances of Symrise for another five years until January 2024. Through the renewal of the CFO's contract, Symrise is ensuring continuity and stability in the Executive Board.

    The Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Dr. Thomas Rabe, said: "We are delighted to have Olaf Klinger on board to lead the financial department for another five years. By extending his contract now, we are demonstrating our long-term orientation, and we are also showing our recognition for his strong past
    performance. Olaf Klinger did an outstanding job in addressing the increasing challenges of the international capital markets and enjoys an excellent reputation within our financial community."

    As a member of the Executive Board, Olaf Klinger (52) has been heading Symrise’s finance department since January 2016. Since his appointment, he has successfully supported the Company in numerous strategic growth initiatives. He provided for instance a diverse range of financing instruments for the sale of the Pinova industrial activities in November 2016 and the acquisition of the British beverage specialist Cobell in May 2017. Symrise also benefited from his extensive knowledge of transactions and integration processes. In addition, Olaf Klinger utilized the positive market environment to carry out the successful placement of €400 million in convertible bonds in June 2017.
    (Symrise AG)
     
    03.04.2018   ENGEL automation on show at Chinaplas 2018    ( Company news )

    Company news At Chinaplas 2018, which takes place in Shanghai from April 24th to 27th, ENGEL will showcase its expertise in automation at a special Expert Corner. On show will be the compact e-pic B and e-pic Z robots – integrated, with expanded software functions –, the new viper 20 speed for high-speed applications and the new 10-inch hand-held unit, which will be making its first appearance in front of an Asian audience.

    Photo: 30 percent faster than the conventional viper: the new viper 20 speed offers removal times of well under 1 second.

    For many years, robots have been relied on in China to provide process stability, fast cycles and high efficiency. From standardised robot cells to customised, integrated system solutions, ENGEL meets the specific automation needs of injection moulding businesses to the letter. It achieves this through a comprehensive portfolio of robots, high levels of special automation expertise and local expertise. At its large-scale machine manufacturing plant in Shanghai, ENGEL runs an automation centre for clients in China.

    “On many projects, success depends on short distances, which means fast project planning and commissioning,” says Gero Willmeroth, Sales and Service President at ENGEL Machinery Shanghai. “That’s why we have invested so heavily in local expertise over the past few years. Now we are ideally placed to handle the increasingly complex demands of our customers. Feedback from the market has been excellent. We have been able to strengthen the trust that our customers have in us.”

    At Chinaplas, ENGEL’s entire automation team in Asia will be on hand to speak to customers. They will use four technically sophisticated applications to demonstrate live the full spectrum of ENGEL’s automation experience. ENGEL will also present all new robot-related developments in a special Expert Corner.

    Integrated e-pic robots
    Small e-pic robots, the latest products in ENGEL’s automation range, are offered in two versions: as linear pick-and-place robots (e-pic Z) and servo sprue pickers (e-pic B). The main feature of the e-pic series is the robots’ lightweight swivel arm in place of a conventional x-axis. This new kind of kinematic system – a USP of ENGEL – significantly increases dynamism and energy efficiency while facilitating a highly space-saving installation on the injection moulding machine. The swivel arm requires less space than a linear axis when moving towards both the injection and clamping sides.

    In a new development, ENGEL will be equipping its e-pic robots with efficiency control. This further improves energy efficiency as the robots adapt the speed of their movements to the cycle of the injection moulding process with the aid of software. Efficiency control has been an established feature of viper linear robots for years.

    At Chinaplas, ENGEL will present the integrated version of its e-pic robots, clearly illustrating how efficiency potential can be maximised by combining injection moulding machines and robots. Within the integrated solutions, the CC300 control unit for ENGEL injection moulding machines becomes the main operating panel for the whole manufacturing cell; this means uniform parts data and alarm management as well as a unified look and feel. Consistent operating logic significantly simplifies activation and programming as well as control of robots and the manufacturing cell as a whole. Of course, robots can be connected subsequently to injection moulding machines by means of a EUROMAP 67 interface, regardless of machine brand.

    viper 20: now even faster
    There will also be an Asian premiere for viper linear robots at Chinaplas. The new viper 20 speed offers removal times of well under 1 second. The enhanced servo-electric drive technology and the reduced weight of the robot’s axes are responsible for the step up in performance. Developed for applications with total cycle times of around 4 seconds, the viper 20 speed is mainly used in the medical and packaging sectors, areas in which top-entry robots tend to offer very high flexibility.

    The viper 20 speed will demonstrate its impressive performance by handling cups at the trade fair. It will work in tandem with an ENGEL easix articulated robot that will take the cups from a moving conveyor belt and stack them in a magazine. In this application both robots – the viper linear and the easix articulated robot – are integrated into a CC300 control unit. It makes no difference whether the CC300 is controlling linear or rotary axes. The additional movement instructions for the multi-axis robot integrate seamlessly with the graphical interface, which simplifies operation significantly. To allow for simple and fast parameterisation despite the complexity of the overall system, the control unit provides different user levels, from a simple view to a fully object-oriented visualisation of the sequence.

    10” for easier operation
    Another highlight of ENGEL’s Expert Corner on automation will be the new C10 10-inch hand-held unit for robots in the ENGEL series; this will replace the 7-inch units in the C70 series over the course of the year. Visitors to Chinaplas will gain a foretaste of the easier operation of the new hand-held unit, which provides a clearer overview.

    ENGEL at Chinaplas 2018: Hall 5.1, stand E71
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    02.04.2018   EAFA: Export surge drives aluminium foil deliveries from Europe to new record in 2017     ( Company news )

    Company news Strong demand from overseas aluminium foil markets in the final quarter of 2017 saw aluminium foil deliveries from European foil rollers reach a new record tonnage for the full year, according to figures released by the European Aluminium Foil Association (EAFA).

    Overall deliveries for the full twelve-month period were at 886,300t (2016: 874,900t), even higher than pre-crisis levels for the second year running. Thinner gauges, used mainly for flexible packaging and household foils added 1.8% year on year, while thicker gauges, used typically for semi-rigid containers and technical applications, slightly increased by 0.3 percent. Total domestic deliveries were ahead by 0.6% in the period, while exports improved strongly, by 5.7 percent.

    The final three months of 2017 saw deliveries to non-European markets increase by 37.2%, with domestic deliveries going down by 2.2 percent. After a buoyant 2016, demand for thicker gauges has climbed by 1.0%, whereas deliveries of thinner gauges have gone up by 2.8%. At 214,800t in total, Q4 deliveries were 2.2% ahead.

    Bruno Rea, EAFA President and Roller Group Chairman, commenting on the figures said, “These results indicate a satisfying full year 2017. High demand seems set to continue, both at home and abroad, meaning our members carefully forecast a positive outlook for 2018.”

    “We are seeing an improvement in domestic markets, as well as some local structural supply issues in key overseas markets. These offer good opportunities for increasing output and sales from European suppliers,” he added.
    (EAFA - European Aluminium Foil Association e.V.)
     
    29.03.2018   Britvic celebrates brand successes for Pepsi MAX and Refresh'd    ( Company news )

    Company news Britvic is pleased to be celebrating the start of 2018 with success for two of its leading brands; Pepsi MAX (photo) ended 2017 with record high market share and Robinsons brand extension, Refresh’d, was the number one Soft Drinks innovation of last year. As consumers continue to prioritise health and wellness and opt for low and no sugar soft drinks, Britvic’s recent brand innovations are rising to the challenge of meeting the ever-changing needs of consumers, and driving growth within the category as a result.

    Pepsi MAX
    Britvic has experienced strong sales growth for Pepsi MAX, which achieved a record market share at the end of 2017. With its ‘maximum taste, no sugar’ positioning, Pepsi MAX has been the core focus of all Pepsi advertising in 2017 and in fact the brand has led with its sugar-free variant for several years. The brand has successfully responded to the growing number of consumers looking for low and no sugar options with new flavour innovation within the MAX brand, including Ginger and Cherry. In fact, Pepsi MAX Cherry is now the No. 1 flavoured cola across the Off-Trade. In terms of volume, Pepsi MAX is now the biggest low or no sugar cola across the convenience & impulse sector, signifying the growing demand for great tasting drinks with reduced sugar content, as consumers become more health conscious.

    Robinsons Refresh’d
    Britvic is also delighted to announce that, according to Nielsen data, Robinsons Refresh’d was named the No.1 soft drinks NPD launch in 2017 and exceeded £7.4m value in retail sales during 20176. Refresh’d is an on-the-go format extension of the No. 1 GB Squash brand7, Robinsons.

    Available in three tasty flavour combinations - Raspberry & Apple, Orange & Lime and Apple & Kiwi – and containing real fruit and no artificial colours, Robinsons Refresh’d has appealed to health-conscious consumers looking for more interesting and lower sugar fruit drink options.

    Paul Graham, GB Managing Director at Britvic, commented: “This is a key moment for Pepsi MAX, which has been consistently taking market share, in a growing category, for many years now. With consumers increasingly seeking great tasting no and low sugar options, it is great to see how successfully Pepsi MAX is taking advantage of that trend, through new flavour innovations and a bold ATL campaign.

    “We’re also thrilled that Robinsons Refresh’d has been so well received. By extending the trusted Robinsons name into an on-the-go format, we’re able to capitalize on the hydration trend and offer an exciting, new product that’s also exempt from the sugar levy.”

    Britvic has led the industry in taking steps to help consumers make healthier choices, through a long term and extensive reformulation programme, an innovation pipeline focused on healthier products, and marketing responsibly. These new results demonstrate its commitment to producing healthier products that cater to changing consumer trends and that its portfolio is well positioned ahead of the impending Soft Drinks Sugar Levy when it comes into place in April 2018.
    (Britvic Plc)
     
    28.03.2018   Protecting Scotch in the age of Brexit    ( Company news )

    Company news The UK is preparing for a time of great change as we approach Brexit. Leaving the European Union will undoubtedly have a major impact on British industries and exporters, including Scotch Whisky.

    We have a team of specialists at the Scotch Whisky Association working hard to ensure the industry is ready for Brexit and that our voice is being heard. One area of great importance is looking at what Brexit might mean for the legal protection of Scotch Whisky, including its geographical indication (GI) status.

    Our Director of Legal Affairs, Alan Park (photo), considers how Brexit might affect the legal protection of Scotch Whisky.
    "Scotch Whisky has been defined in UK law since 1933. Brexit is not going to change that. Scotch Whisky is also recognised as a GI and has been since the concept was introduced by World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules in 1994.

    A GI has unique characteristics and a reputation associated with its origin. Brexit will not alter the fact that Scotch Whisky is a GI. There is an obligation on members of the WTO, the vast majority of nations, to protect GIs from misuse. Some WTO members do that by providing a register for GIs in the same way countries provide a trade mark register. Scotch Whisky is recognised as a GI in this way from the Dominican Republic to Thailand.

    Other countries choose to protect GIs in other ways and the SWA has taken advantage of those different approaches.For example, Scotch Whisky is specifically protected in the domestic legislation of many markets, such as the recognition given to Scotch Whisky in the US Federal Code. Brexit is not going to affect that either.

    Where Brexit will have an impact is in the protection given to Scotch Whisky in some bilateral agreements between the EU and third countries. We want the UK to negotiate the continued benefits of those agreements but, in the meantime, the SWA is already taking steps to ensure that Scotch Whisky is recognised and protected in those markets in the range of ways available to it.

    The key fact to remember is that the SWA has been protecting Scotch Whisky around the world before GIs were defined by the WTO in 1994, and before the EU existed, so whatever changes Brexit brings, the SWA will continue to do what it has done for many decades: stop the sale of any products unfairly taking advantage of the reputation of Scotch Whisky.

    This means the consumer can continue to enjoy Scotch Whisky knowing that it is a well protected and high quality drink."
    (SWA The Scotch Whisky Association)
     
    28.03.2018   SIG reports progress on its Way Beyond Good journey - Corporate Responsibility Performance Update...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... published for 2017

    SIG’s Corporate Responsibility (CR) Performance Update for 2017 reports progress on its bold Way Beyond Good ambitions to contribute more to society and the environment than it takes out.

    Highlights include several milestones on SIG’s responsibility roadmap:
    • The innovative SIGNATURE PACK is the first aseptic carton linked to 100% renewable forest-based materials.
    • More than 60 billion SIG packs have now been sold with the FSCTM label and the share of SIG packs carrying the FSCTM label hit 88% by the end of 2017, showing good progress towards its 100% target for 2020.
    • SIG has established a partnership with BRAC, a development NGO, to pilot its flagship Cartons for Good project in Bangladesh that will use SIG technology to help communities preserve surplus food at harvest time with a specially designed mobile filling unit.

    SIG’s CEO Rolf Stangl said: “Our bold Way Beyond Good ambitions are driving progress across all three of our responsibility pillars: company, sourcing and products. We have a long way to go, but I am enormously proud of the strides we have made in 2017. The latest rating from EcoVadis recognises our progress, placing SIG in the top 1% of the 30,000 or more businesses assessed on wide-ranging corporate responsibility topics.”

    Partnering for progress
    The CR Performance Update reinforces SIG’s commitment to the principles of the United Nations Global Compact and emphasises its support for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

    SIG stood alongside the Forest Stewardship CouncilTM (FSCTM) and other leading businesses in 2017 to pledge support for the Vancouver Declaration to ensure their use of forest materials contributes to the SDGs.

    Through initiatives such as the Net Positive Project, SIG continues to work with partners to help drive progress in its own business and beyond. The company is also inviting input from external stakeholders through its new Responsibility Advisory Group.

    Commitment to transparent reporting
    Transparency is integral to SIG’s ethos as a responsible company. The company is committed to report regularly on performance related to its most material corporate responsibility issues, as identified through a detailed materiality assessment.

    The CR Performance Update for 2017 provides an interim report on progress against the 2020 targets set out in SIG’s responsibility roadmap, including data on key performance indicators and key achievements from the year. It supplements the companies biennial full Corporate Responsibility Report, produced in accordance with guidelines from the Global Reporting Initiative, which offers more detail on how SIG manages social and environmental issues.

    SIG’s Head of Corporate Responsibility Michael Hecker said: “The CR Performance Update tells our story of the year. It showcases what we have achieved, but it also shows where we have more work to do. I am looking forward to reporting further progress in our full CR Report next year.”
    (SIG Combibloc GmbH)
     
    27.03.2018   Nestlé Waters North America Launches New Line of Healthy Flavored Sparkling Water    ( Company news )

    Company news More and more American consumers are seeking healthy alternatives to sugary sodas and juices, including water, which does not contain any calories. However, some consumers want a bit of added flavor and fizz.

    Nestlé Waters North America is launching a new Regional Spring Water Brand Sparkling portfolio with 10 flavors in new vibrant and colorful packaging, with no added sugar, sweeteners or colors – just fresh spring water with natural flavors and bubbles, so that consumers can enjoy a guilt-free refreshing beverage.

    There are six brands in Nestlé Waters’ new Regional Spring Water Brand Sparkling line – Poland Spring®, Deer Park®, Zephyrhills®, Ozarka®, Ice Mountain® and Arrowhead®.

    Not only will Nestlé Waters be offering this new line in sleek vintage glass-like bottles, the beverages will also be available in cans. Both the bottles and cans will have fruit graphics, vivid colors and more prominent branding. The new colored caps will distinguish the new line from other brands. For those who would like to try a variety of flavors, there will also be a rainbow pack, with 24 bottles or cans in a combination of flavors, so that consumers can try them all and pick their favorites.

    The sparkling water category was up 70% from 2011 to 2016 in the U.S., and is expected to reach $3.1 billion by 2022, according to Euromonitor International.

    "Following rapid growth over the past few years, the sparkling water category is now mature enough for us to make a significant investment in developing this extensive line of mainstream sparkling offerings from our regional spring water brands, each of which is the top-selling still spring water brand in its market," said Antonio Sciuto, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer for Nestlé Waters North America.

    With Nestlé Waters’ rich history in providing premium sparkling water to consumers with their brands Perrier® and S. Pellegrino®, and the current strength of our regional spring water brands as a $103MM player with extremely high household penetration, we are well positioned to bring these products to the market for consumers to enjoy.
    (Nestlé Waters North America)
     
    26.03.2018   Tetra Pak delivers more than half a billion fully renewable packages    ( Company news )

    Company news World’s first fully renewable package featured in new display at the Museum of Brands

    Tetra Pak has now delivered more than half a billion packs of Tetra Rex® Bio-based, the world’s first beverage carton to be manufactured entirely from renewable materials. The landmark event was announced at the Museum of Brands, in London, where the package, is featured in a new sustainability display.

    Photo: Tetra Rex® carton package with TwistCap OSO34

    Tetra Rex® Bio-based, which was launched in October 2014, is manufactured solely from Forest Stewardship Council™ (FSC™) certified and controlled sources paperboard, together with plastics derived from sugar cane, all traceable to their origins.

    Packages made from renewable materials are essential for preserving the environment for future generations. Renewable resources can be replenished naturally over time and enable a move away from fossil fuel-based materials, reducing the environmental impact as well as improving resource efficiency.

    Christina Chester, Product Director at Tetra Pak said, “We are delighted to see the growing popularity of Tetra Rex Bio-based among customers. Packages made entirely from renewable materials are not only good for the planet, but also good for brands that seek to differentiate themselves with stronger environmental messages. With everything traceable to its plant origin, consumers are assured that the package they hold in their hands is derived entirely from plants.”

    Chris Griffin, CEO, Museum of Brands said: “It is good to hear about the significant progress Tetra Pak is making in terms of delivering fully-renewable packages. They are offering brands more sustainable packaging at a time when environment is top-of-mind among consumers, and people want to make more environmentally sound choices.”

    The Sustainable Packaging display opens today at the Museum of Brands, and will be showing a selection of initiatives that help reduce the burden of packaging on the environment.
    (Tetra Pak Schweiz AG)
     
    23.03.2018   Preventive maintenance of aseptic machines: KHS offers fixed modules at fixed prices    ( Company news )

    Company news The standards of quality in hygienic filling are high – as is the cost of production downtime.

    -Unplanned downtimes avoided
    -Longer machine service lives and greater production reliability
    -Fixed prices for all maintenance modules

    The standards of quality in hygienic filling are high – as is the cost of production downtime. It is thus important to carry out preventive maintenance on machines in order to detect any possible wear and microbiological risks in good time – and to avoid them. For high standards of quality and safety in the long term KHS provides a proven preventive maintenance system for both the linear and rotary version of its Innosept Asbofill aseptic filler – with fixed modules at fixed prices.

    The established, optimized system is an important component in KHS’ holistic range of services, giving bottlers the safety and reliability they need in the production process. “In this way failure through wear is avoided, risks to product safety are detected well in advance and the availability of the system is ensured,” states Thomas Niehr, head of Aseptic Filling Technology for KHS in Bad Kreuznach, Germany. “Should just one single part of the machine fail, the financial and material loss can be vast if the bottler has a sterile product in the tank which has to be processed quickly, for instance.” For this reason KHS offers special maintenance modules which Niehr describes as being comparable to a service for a car. The intervals are always gauged by certain time cycles and machine operating hours, with KHS providing the material packages and engineers.

    Overall machine state inspected
    During maintenance not only are smaller wear parts replaced; the overall condition of the machine is inspected and settings are corrected where applicable. The customer is given detailed information on all results in a concluding machine status report. The Dortmund systems supplier provides fixed maintenance packages for all of its aseptic machines at a set price which varies depending on the required intensity of maintenance and fulfillment of certain service tasks by KHS. “If KHS takes on the entire management during servicing, this has many benefits for the customer. The replacement of wear parts can’t be avoided. Preventive maintenance, however, ensures smooth production as all processes and machine data are consistently read out and monitored by our engineers,” says Niehr. “We then coordinate the entire maintenance management process together with the customer. This again increases machine and production safety and reliability. A dairy, for instance, can’t afford long downtimes." The more regularly and intensively a system is monitored by KHS, the shorter any downtimes are. The practiced course of events executed between the bottler and KHS’ engineers also cuts down on the amount of administrative effort, thus further reducing costs, claims Niehr.

    This generates a number of calculable advantages for the operator, as fixed costs also enable budgets to be securely planned, with identical installments paid at pre-specified intervals. Niehr emphasizes, “Customers know exactly how much maintenance costs them. It’s also possible to compute costs according to the number of bottles filled, with a fixed allocation of maintenance costs to product giving bottlers planning security.” As an option KHS also supplies additional spare part and emergency packages beside the replacement of wear parts within the scope of its maintenance modules.

    “Preventative maintenance thus has many benefits,” smiles Niehr. By avoiding unplanned downtime the overall cost of production is lowered in the long term. Unlike an unscheduled system standstill, preventive maintenance can be sensibly integrated into the production plan. “It’s a prudent investment,” concludes Niehr, who also points out that KHS is constantly further developing its system of maintenance. “The aim is to fully equip the machines with sensors in the future so that they’re monitored online by the electronics. With this form of preventive maintenance the amount of downtime will be reduced even further and production will become even more efficient and cost effective.”
    (KHS GmbH)
     
    23.03.2018   Symrise Demonstrates Taste Solutions for the Regional Market at Nigeria agrofood    ( Company news )

    Company news • The company exhibits at the Nigeria agrofood trade show
    • Products for customers in West Africa

    Symrise is boosting its operations in the West African market. The global supplier of fragrances and flavorings will present its products at agrofood Nigeria with its own booth at the Landmark Centre – Hall 1 1C.1.10. The trade show, which will be held in Lagos from March 27 to 29, 2018, addresses the entire value chain, from farm to table. Additional trade show topics include the food processing and flavor industries.

    At the largest food trade show in West Africa, Symrise will be offering visitors to its booth a wide range of concepts for beverages, sweets and other foods that have been developed to fit the region’s specific preferences. For example, guests will have the opportunity to learn more about palm wine, cherry mints, beef and chicken bouillon cubes, and mango-baobab juice. These products highlight the local expertise of the Holzminden based company, its strong connection to the West African market and its in-depth knowledge of consumer wishes.

    There are plenty of reasons for Symrise to exhibit at agrofood Nigeria. “We’ve been active here for a long time and want to strengthen our local presence,” says Dr. Alexander Lichter, Vice President Sales Flavor Division EAME at Symrise. “We want to demonstrate our expertise to our customers in Nigeria and West Africa: creating natural and authentic flavor experiences for the people who live here using state-of-the-art technology.” With a population of nearly 190 million, Nigeria is one of the most important markets in the region, Lichter explains. The country has shown very promising development, both demographically and economically. Symrise has been active throughout the country for more than 30 years.

    Naturalness and Authenticity for Customers in West Africa
    Symrise has registered rising demand for natural, regional and authentic foods – among its customers as well as consumers. “That’s why we’ve dedicated ourselves to fulfilling these wishes,” says Dr. Alexander Lichter, Vice President Sales Flavor Division EAME. “Our company does this by perfecting how it processes raw materials, which are sourced in line with high ethical standards and the principle of sustainability. That’s why the Group can deliver products with an extraordinarily authentic flavor that contributes to well-being.”

    In addition to its solutions for authentic flavor experiences, Symrise also offers natural food colorings. This is produced by Symrise’s Diana Food division, a specialist in functional food ingredients.
    (Symrise AG)
     
    22.03.2018   Caffeinated Stimulants get a WakeUp! Call    ( Company news )

    Company news Plant-based Alertness Formula Receives U.S. Patent

    InnoBev Ltd., has received a U.S. patent for WakeUp!®, its plant-based alertness formula. The patent describes a method for providing an “awakening effect “as well as for compositions of plant extracts that help improve well-being.

    The WakeUp formula is designed to counteract “post-lunch dip,” the time of day when fatigue, drowsiness and foggy thinking can stunt productivity. It can help provide a lift on slow mornings and evenings as well.

    The formula incorporates functional extracts of guarana, ginkgo biloba, and elderberry, and is sweetened by a low-glycaemic fruit extract. The non-caffeinated beverage answers a growing demand among today’s, health-conscious consumers who want to perform at optimal levels throughout the day, without the jitteriness, crash, and other drawbacks of caffeine.

    “This Inno-Bev patent approval comes at a time when energy drinks are under renewed scrutiny due to concerns over negative health effects associated with overconsumption, and when major beverage brands are investing huge sums in healthy, science-based beverages,” says Eli Faraggi, founder and CEO of Inno-Bev. “Our internal clock helps regulate sleep patterns, feeding behavior, hormone release, and blood pressure. WakeUp alertness drink is designed to help consumers balance that internal clock.” WakeUp recently won “Best Functional Drink” awards in Europe and the US.

    Four clinical research studies conducted with third-party partners indicated that WakeUp can help counteract fatigue and balance the body’s circadian rhythm. “In randomized controlled trials, WakeUp was shown to overcome the post-lunch dip/morning inertia, and improve vigilance, focus, and work performance with no tolerance effect or the side effects, such as those associated with caffeinated beverages and other stimulants,” explains science and regulatory specialist Risa Schulman, PhD, following an expert scientific review of Inno-Bev’s formulations. “In addition, when consumed consistently over a 30-day period, it could help improve brain function.”

    Faraggi notes that InnoBev originally sought only a solution to the post-lunch dip phenomenon. “Following the first clinical study, we quickly understood that we had developed an effective, safe, and clinically supported way to improve wakefulness throughout the day,” he explains.

    The company now has two formulas: WakeUp, for dietary supplements, and Rhythm™, for beverages. Analysis of new product launches, tracked by Innova Market Insights from 2013-2017, sees “green” energy drinks that feature natural energy sources, as having a major impact on the energy drink/alertness/stimulation category moving forward.

    Additional clinical research is being conducted on WakeUp by Giora Pillar, PhD, head of sleep laboratory at Israel’s leading science institute, the Technion Faculty of Medicine, Haifa. The studies are scheduled to be completed in the third quarter of 2018.

    “The timing for launching WakeUp in the U.S. and elsewhere is based on the important milestones already achieved, new research in the pipeline, and InnoBev’s long-term commitment to innovative science-based food and beverage development,” says Faraggi. The WakeUp formula can be integrated into cereals and dairy yogurts for a comprehensive range of “BioWaker” solutions.

    Inno-Bev currently is seeking partnerships with leading U.S. beverage and supplement companies. “We believe our scientifically supported and ready-to-market approach will disrupt the energy category,” Faraggi states. “Our business model includes joint-ventures and licensing of the Inno-Bev IP, either by application or by market segment. WakeUp also can be readily integrated into existing consumer brands.”
    (Inno-Bev Ltd)
     
    21.03.2018   Beviale Family – SIBA's BeerX: Here's to a great partnership!    ( Company news )

    Company news -BeerX becomes part of the Beviale Family network
    -Marketing collaboration now in place

    SIBA’s BeerX, Britain’s largest trade fair for all aspects of beer and brewing, is now an official partner of the Beviale Family. After five successful events in Sheffield, BeerX took place in Liverpool for the first time on 14 and 15 March 2018. The aim of the new partnership is to network existing successful events with one another and to work together to develop the respective target markets. This marketing collaboration enables the Beviale Family to expand its worldwide network in beverage production, so that it is now represented in the UK as well as in Russia, China, Italy, India and Brazil.

    Photo: Andrea Kalrait, NürnbergMesse, and Nick Stafford, SIBA, are looking foraward to a good collaboration. // © Barclayimaging

    The United Kingdom is the second-largest beer producer in Europe, where only Germany brews more beer. Moreover, according to market research company Statista (2016), the UK has 2,250 breweries, the largest number in Europe, followed by Germany with 1,408. SIBA (Society of Independent Brewers) represents the interests of the growing number of independent brewers in Britain and is therefore the ideal partner. “We have been working successfully with SIBA for some time now in conjunction with BrauBeviale,” explains Andrea Kalrait, Exhibition Director BrauBeviale and international product manager for the Beviale Family. “This is why we are very pleased that we managed to get SIBA on board as a partner for the Beviale Family. The independent brewers of Britain are a perfect match for us. We work together as equals and are looking forward to a successful partnership on this basis!”

    “SIBA are delighted to be partnering with Beviale Family and becoming part of their global network of industry-leading beer and brewing trade events. British independent craft beer continues to be in huge demand and brewers are increasingly looking to international export to grow their business – our partnership with Beviale Family helps open opportunities for our British brewing members thinking on a global scale,” adds Nick Stafford, Operations Director SIBA.

    Beviale Family: International expertise in the beverage industry
    The NürnbergMesse Group demonstrates its expertise in the beverage industry on an international stage. Its “parent event” is BrauBeviale, the international capital goods exhibition for the beverage industry in Nuremberg. This is where, for over 40 years, the sector has been showcasing all aspects of the production process chain for beverages, such as raw materials, technologies, logistics and marketing. Other members of the product family operate in important growth markets worldwide. Beviale Moscow, for example, is the first and only trade fair for the entire beverage industry in Eastern Europe. CRAFT BEER CHINA in Shanghai is becoming established as the gathering place for the Chinese craft beer community, while CRAFT BEER ITALY in Milan is the B2B platform for the Italian sector. The Beviale product family is also represented in Brazil, as the Feira Brasileira da Cerveja in Blumenau is “supported by BrauBeviale”. The latest edition to the family is CRAFT DRINKS INDIA in Bangalore.
    (NürnbergMesse GmbH)
     
    21.03.2018   Frutarom Now in the Top 5 Suppliers of Natural Colors     ( Company news )

    Company news Frutarom opens €5 million formulation center to answer growing demand for natural colors

    Frutarom has become one of the top five suppliers of natural colors worldwide following its acquisition of several natural colors companies, and major investments in building fully integrated, safe, and controlled supply chains. The company has experienced double-digit growth annually in the natural colorants segment.

    “Frutarom has taken full control of the supply chain through reverse integration in order to ensure safe, natural colorants, with complete traceability,” says Ori Yehudai, President and CEO of Frutarom. “Placing the customer at the focal point of our business allowed us to effect true change in how the company engages with partners and farmers, while maintaining complete transparency.”

    Frutarom initiated dozens of agriculture collaborations with local farmers in multiple locations and countries to ensure the supply of continuous and sustainable natural sourcing of pigments and food colorings. In addition, the company has increased the technical competencies for its already expansive extract capabilities. Frutarom-owned facilities located near the farms. This is how the company ensures transparency and traceability from the farm to the final product, as well reducing environmental impacts and ensuring responsible sourcing to customers. The company can assure secure supply, meet volume demands, safeguard product quality, and provide seamless service at every juncture.

    “This strategic move to become a major player in natural colors globally took only three years but we put immense efforts and investments to do it right, and beneficial to the local farmers and our employees,” adds Yehudai.

    Frutarom recently opened a natural color formulations center at its Etol plant in Celje, Slovenia, to provide its European customers full, customized service. The center will help clients with natural colors application, creating natural flavor combinations, and utilization of its advanced beverage compound technologies for creating innovative, sustainable food and beverage products with an eye on the competitive edge. Frutarom invested €5 million in advanced equipment and technology for the new facility.

    The new formulation hub will serve 15,000 Frutarom’s customers in Europe—about 50% of the company’s global customers. The Etol facility provides extensive expertise in flavors and formulation development. The 90-year-old company was acquired by Frutarom in 2012.

    “Etol has a solid reputation of successful cooperation with food and beverage customers in creating new flavor solutions,” says Yehudai. “Frutarom Etol is expanding its offerings to include a full range of natural colors manufactured with advanced technologies. Natural colors are much more challenging than synthetic colors in terms of their sensitivity, and if not incorporated correctly can be less stable in food and beverage applications.”

    “Frutarom makes it possible to bridge the gap between consumers who want natural, sustainable products in which they can understand and identify each ingredient with food manufacturer’s need to create a new, functional, tasty product with natural coloring,” explains Yehudai.
    (Frutarom Industries Ltd)
     
    20.03.2018   Crown's Thermochromic 'Reveal' Ink Technology Makes Commercial Debut With Coca-Cola    ( Company news )

    Company news As competition for consumer attention and loyalty intensifies, brands are increasingly turning to packaging to achieve differentiation on retail shelves and enhance engagement. To deliver an interactive experience to consumers before, during and after consumption, Coca-Cola has rolled out cans of Coke, Coke Zero, Fanta and Sprite in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia featuring Reveal temperature sensitive inks.

    The result of collaboration between Crown Bevcan Europe & Middle East and Chromatic Technologies Inc. (CTI), Reveal inks allow graphics to change to ‘reveal’ specific imagery and messaging during consumption. Two thermochromic inks appear at the same time when the can is cold, but as the cold product is consumed, one ink disappears. This technology provides one ambient ‘original’ image, one ‘cold’ image and as the consumer drinks the contents of the can, a third image appears, offering the perfect vehicle to hide a message.

    Coca-Cola featured four specific messages - one per brand – to engage with its customers in a fun, unique manner. Cans are decorated to include either a person or cartoon-style animal, from which a speech bubble emanates to hold the thermochromic messaging which appears when the can is chilled. An interactive quick response (QR) code beneath the image links to exclusive video content, driving traffic to the brand’s website.

    The application represents the first commercial use of Reveal inks.
    (Crown Holdings Inc.)
     
    19.03.2018   Australia: AB InBev's Carlton and United Breweries to invest heavily in its Cascade brewery    ( E-malt.com )

    Australia’s Carlton and United Breweries, part of AB InBev, has announced a A$10.3 mln (US$8 mln) capital investment in Cascade to create a ‘craft brewing hub’ for the Asia Pacific region, BeverageDaily.com reported on February 27.

    The investment will significantly increase Cascade’s brewing capability at its Tasmania base and ‘launch Cascade as one of Australia’s leading craft breweries’, according to the company. Production will increase by 65%.

    “Cascade will expand its craft brewing options, including brewing experimental beers for our Australian and Asia Pacific region operations,” says Carlton and United Breweries.

    “It will also brew a number of beers from some of the world’s leading craft brands.”

    Established in 1824, Cascade Brewery Co is Australia’s oldest brewery, and uses Tasmanian water from Mount Wellington and Tasmanian grown hops and barley.

    Carlton and United Breweries says the investment demonstrates its long-term commitment to the brand and to Tasmania, with the expansion securing existing jobs and creating five full-time positions.

    The Tasmanian Government made a A$1 mln contribution to the upgrade.

    Beers brewed at Cascade will be distributed across Australia, as well as being exported to Asia Pacific.

    Anita Holdsworth has been appointed as Cascade’s brewery manager: the first female to hold the position.
     
    19.03.2018   Belgium & Netherlands: Belgian Trappist monks upset by Dutch supermarket re-selling their beers...    ( E-malt.com )

    ... without permission

    The monks of a Trappist monastery in Belgium are reportedly very upset that a Dutch supermarket is re-selling its beers without permission and for a huge mark-up, The Drinks Business reported on March 9.

    The abbey of Saint-Sixtus in is one of the Low Countries’ renowned Trappist brewing communities and its beer is not only highly sought-after but also tricky to get hold of.

    The beer is only sold at the abbey’s shop and a local café and all orders from the shop must be reserved in advance and then picked up in person. The monks even take note of the registration number of the car that will be used to pick up the beer and once a reservation has been made then the same telephone and registration number cannot be used again to place an order for 60 days.

    In addition, all beer purchased must be for personal consumption and consumers must agree not to sell the beer on to third parties. In 2011, at a time when it needed funds to renovate its buildings, the abbey did grant permission to a retailer to sell its beer commercially, Belgian wholesaler Colruyt, and then in 2012 Dutch wholesaler Sligro, for the price of €27.50 for six bottles.

    However, customers in the Netherlands have recently noticed that supermarket chain Jan Linders had 300 crates of the abbey’s beer and was selling it for €9.95 a bottle, with only two bottles allowed per customer.

    The beer is sold by the abbey in cases of 24 making a case at Jan Linders €238.80; nearly five times the price the abbey sells its most-expensive beer for.

    The abbey produces three beers; a blond, a dark 8% beer and dark 10% beer, priced respectively at €35, €40 and €45 per case of 24.

    Each case then has an additional deposit of €15 which is redeemable by customers at any time upon return of the case and empty bottles.

    The news has caused interest among beer drinkers in the Low Countries because seeing Westvleteren beer in shops is so rare but quite how the chain acquired the bottles in question is not clear because the monks are saying it didn’t come from them.

    A spokesman for the abbey brewery told the drinks business that the community was disappointed to see their beer being sold for profit in this way and that it went against the “ethics of the abbey”.

    They added that Jan Linders’ commercial activity was entirely without the consent of the monks and they wished for the supermarket to desist.

    Gineke Wilms, a spokeswoman for the supermarket told Dutch newspaper De Limburger that the beer had been acquired “thanks to our partners” but did not specify who said partners were. “We see it as a reward for the fact that we have been voted the best specialty beer supermarket in the Netherlands for several years,” she continued.

    Jan Linders was not immediately available for comment.
     
    19.03.2018   corvaglia group announces U.S. expansion in Georgia    ( Company news )

    Company news Switzerland based corvaglia group announced plans to build a new manufacturing facility in Newnan, Georgia. The company provides plastic cap and closure technology solutions to the beverage industry around the world. The new U.S. production facility will compliment corvaglia’s existing advanced manufacturing operations in Eschlikon, Switzerland and Ixtlahuaca, Mexico.

    corvaglia’s business begins and ends with closure design and as a vertically integrated supplier of caps and closures for PET (polyethylene terephthalate) containers, they deliver expertise all along the value chain. Founded in 1991, corvaglia continues to focus on one-piece closure technologies deployed from the design concept all the way through to the consumer. This end-to-end market approach is embodied in their slogan ‘Think, Shape, Make, Apply’ caps.

    The new U.S. facility will be operational by year-end and utilize corvaglia’s in-house proprietary moulds to manufacture lightweight one-piece caps and closures for the North American beverage market. Additionally, corvaglia will bring high-speed digital printing to the new U.S. facility that will provide valuable branding opportunities with virtually no limitations to artwork or graphics.
    (Corvaglia Closures Eschlikon AG)
     
    19.03.2018   South Korea: Hite Jinro decides not to sell brewery, produce soju there instead    ( E-malt.com )

    Hite Jinro Co., South Korea's second-largest beer maker by sales, said on March 7 that it will produce the local distilled liquor soju at one of its beer factories as it abandons a plan to sell off the plant, the Yonhap News Agency reported.

    The brewer said part of the production line is being retrofitted to make soju at its beer factory in Masan, an industrial city located some 400 kilometers southeast of Seoul.

    The company aims to produce soju at its beer plant by the end of this year.

    "We made the decision to meet growing demand for soju and to resolve the local community's concerns about possible job cuts," company spokeswoman Nho Eun-jung said.

    Soju, a rice-based liquor, is popular among South Koreans.

    The beer factory in Masan employs about 200 people, according to the company.

    Hite Jinro sells 150 million bottles of soju per month, making it the largest soju maker in South Korea. The company has three soju plants and three separate beer factories in South Korea.
     
    19.03.2018   UK: Carlsberg launches re-creation of original 19th century dark lager in the on-trade until June    ( E-malt.com )

    A re-creation of Carlsberg’s original dark lager from the late 19th century has been launched exclusively in the UK on-trade until June, the Bar Magazine reported on March 13.

    Carlsberg 1883 uses the brewer’s original 134-year old yeast, Saccharomyces Carlsbergensis, which was first isolated and identified by Dr Emil Christian Hansen at the Carlsberg Laboratory in Copenhagen.

    The strain is still used in fermentation in brewing all around the world but the new beer was developed through the Carlsberg Rebrew project using pure yeast found in a bottle from 1883.

    Celebrating this innovation, the new Danish-style dark lager is full-bodied and rich in malt and caramel, with ABV of 4.6%. Brewed in Denmark, it has a fresh aroma of malt and caramel and a sweet-biscuit body followed by a well-balance aftertaste.

    Liam Newton, vice president of marketing for Carlsberg UK, said: “We’re proud of the role Carlsberg has played in the history of brewing. Carlsberg 1883 celebrates the discovery of the purified yeast strain that was shared with brewers worldwide to secure the consistent qualities of beer as we know it today.

    “The beer market has changed dramatically in the past few years, let alone since 1883, so it is important that brewers like ourselves demonstrate the quality of our beers and the dedication of our brewers and ultimately help create reasons for beer drinkers to visit the pub.”
     
    19.03.2018   USA: Beer production drops by the highest rate in 14 years last year    ( E-malt.com )

    Statistics released by the U.S. Treasury bureau that regulates sales of alcohol indicate that, in 2017, beer production in the U.S. dropped by its highest rate in 14 years — 2.75 percent — to its lowest overall volume in at least three decades.

    The statistics, published March 1st by the Alcohol Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, compile numbers reported directly by all licensed breweries in the U.S. The bureau’s statistics show brewers reported producing just over 185 million barrels in the 2017 calendar year, a nearly 5 million barrel drop from the roughly 190 million barrels produced in 2016.

    According to archival bureau reports, annual U.S. beer production has not stood below 190 million barrels per year since prior to 1986, its earliest annual records currently published online. While annual production surpassed 200 million barrels several times in the 1990s, it's reached that number just once this century — in 2002 — before correcting with a 2.8 percent drop the following year, to 195 million barrels.

    The numbers have fluctuated since, but trended down, including a 2.1 percent drop in 2013. They have been relatively stagnant since 2014.

    These figures reflect all beer produced in the U.S., including both legacy macro-beer producers such as Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors, and the independent craft breweries that have proliferated locally. Leading up to 2017, the downward trend could be attributed to a modest decline in production by macro breweries that still control over 85 percent of the $106.7 billion beer market.

    It's too soon to say whether last year's decline in overall production predicts a decline in craft beer as well. While statistics maintained by the Brewers Association indicate that craft brewers have steadily increased both in overall production volume and market share over the past decade, that trend slowed in 2016, even as the number of craft breweries rose to over 6000.

    Corporate acquisitions of high-profile, high-volume craft breweries in the past several years have held craft growth in check. According to Brewers Association statistics released last spring, the 24.6 million barrels produced by craft breweries in 2016 resulted in barely more than a 1 percent rise, following a decade averaging double-digit increases.

    Updated craft industry figures will likely be released by next month.

    Meanwhile, corresponding monthly reports prepared by the Beer Institute, sourcing data from the U.S. Department of Commerce, show where some of that beer consumption has gone. While U.S. production has dropped 7.7 million barrels over the past three years, beer imports overall have increased by 5 million barrels in that time span. Leading the way by far is Mexico, which has added 4.6 million barrels during that time, importing 23 million barrels to the U.S. in 2017.
     
    19.03.2018   USA: Bland beer is still the king despite quick rise of popularity of craft beers    ( E-malt.com )

    Although craft beer has experienced explosive market growth over the past 25 years, the vast majority of Americans still don't drink it.

    Only about 1 in 8 beers sold in America is a craft beer. For the first time, the three best-selling beers in America are light beers: Bud Light, Coors Light and Miller Lite. Bud Light alone has a greater market share than all craft beers combined, MENAFN.COM reported on March 13.

    So while the selection has broadened dramatically, most people's tastes have not. Even craft beer companies are adjusting to this reality: A recent Chicago Tribune article noted that craft breweries are releasing beers that are 'less hoppy and in-your-face' in order to appeal to the majority of Americans who prefer 'big corporate lagers.'

    In other words, they're brewing blander beers.

    How did Americans come to prefer such bland beer? The unique history of the U.S. temperance movement might bear some responsibility for country's exceptionally bland beer.

    Unlike European countries with beer preferences and styles that have evolved over centuries, America lacks a homegrown brewing tradition.

    The classic American beer is an 'adjunct pilsner,' which means that some of the malted barley is replaced with corn or rice. The effect is a beer that's lighter, clearer and less hoppy than its counterparts in countries like England, Germany and Belgium.

    In colonial America, English-style beers and ales predominated, but rum and then whiskey were the drink of choice. Cider, easier to make at home, overtook beer by the early 19th century.

    However, the American beer market grew during the great mid-19th century wave of German immigration. German lagers were an immediate hit, partially because the German brewing method of bottom fermentation – which involves a relatively long fermentation period and cold storage – made for a more consistent, storable product than top-fermented ales. The lagers were also mellower, though they were dark and hearty compared to what would become popular later.

    But the 'lager bier craze' dovetailed with another big trend: the temperance movement, which at various times sought to reduce problem drinking, reduce drinking more generally and eradicate alcohol consumption completely. From 1830 to 1845, the temperance movement gained momentum as more and more Americans were taking voluntary ' temperance pledges ' and giving up spirits and cider.

    German brewers always maintained that beer was a 'temperance beverage,' unlike ardent spirits such as whiskey. And indeed, European temperance movements did tend to regard beer as relatively harmless.

    But activists in the American temperance movement – which by then had become more about abstinence and intertwined with evangelical Protestantism – didn't buy the argument. The 1850s saw the first big push for state-level prohibition laws, which ended up being passed in a handful of states. Those laws didn't last for a variety of reasons (including the Civil War), but they did serve notice to the brewers that they needed to work harder to convince the public that beer was a temperance beverage.

    In the 1870s, American beer would become mellower still with the advent of a new type of lager: the Bohemian pilsner. Clearer, lighter and blander than the Bavarian lagers that had previously dominated the market, pilsners looked cleaner, healthier, more stable and less intoxicating.

    As an 1878 issue of the trade publication Western Brewer noted, Americans 'want a clear beer of light color, mild and not too bitter taste.'

    Brewers and drinkers who wanted to avert the temperance movement's gaze naturally chose light pilsners over dark lagers. But lighter beer also was a good fit for the long hours of American factory workers, many of whom ate at saloons between shifts. Coming back to work drunk could get you fired, so if you wanted a beer or two with the salty saloon fare, the weakest beers were the best bet.

    Pragmatism and personal taste soon became intertwined. Anheuser-Busch introduced Budweiser in 1876 – whose rice adjuncts produced an even milder beer – to great success. Pabst Blue Ribbon, with its corn adjuncts, became a national sensation as well.

    In 1916, Gustave Pabst, the son of Pabst Blue Ribbon's founder Frederick Pabst, told the United States Brewers Association that 'the discrimination in favor of light beers (is strongest) in those countries where the anti-alcohol sentiment is strongest.'

    Nonetheless, the drumbeat of the temperance movement started getting louder.

    By the late 19th and early 20th century, the temperance movement had returned in force. Efficient organizing campaigns by the Woman's Christian Temperance Union and the Anti-Saloon League led to a new wave of state and local prohibitions and, finally, a push for national prohibition.

    National constitutional prohibition, as decreed by the 18th Amendment and the Volstead Act, was devastating to the beer industry in the short term. But in the long term, it further laid the groundwork for a nation of bland beer drinkers.

    Careful estimates by economist Clark Warburton found that alcohol consumption during Prohibition may have actually risen for wine and spirits but fell by two-thirds for beer, which was harder to conceal. Although Prohibition may have introduced a generation of young people to cocktails, they had hardly any exposure to beer – and certainly hadn't acquired the taste for hearty beer.

    In March 1933, eight months before the 21st Amendment repealed Prohibition, Congress modified the Volstead Act to allow the production of 'non-intoxicating,' low-alcohol beer and wine, with a maximum of 4 percent alcohol by volume.

    The new, watered-down beer was a huge hit with the public, which hadn't tasted a full-strength legal beer since 1917. Dark beers and ales had accounted for some 15 percent of the market before World War I. But in 1936 their share was just 2 to 3 percent. In 1947, researchers at Schwarz Laboratories analyzed the alcohol, hop and malt content of American beers in the 1930s and 1940s and remarked that many of these early post-repeal beers were 'too hoppy,' 'too heavy and too filling' for consumers' tastes. The report noted 'a corrective trend' in which brewers sharply reduced their hop and malt content.

    More adventurous brewers and drinkers were also stymied by post-Prohibition laws. State and federal policies effectively banned homebrewing, and most states required a 'three-tier' system of brewers, distributors and retailers that made it more difficult to make and market specialty beers.

    The blandification of American beer continued for another 70 years. During World War II, American troops got 4 percent alcohol beer in their rations, exposing yet another generation to the joys of weak beer. The hop and malt content of beer fell sharply and steadily over this period. Hop content fell by half from 1948 to 1969, and the rise of 'lite' beer in the 1970s accelerated the trend. Hop content fell 35 percent from 1970 to 2004.

    Despite the phenomenal rise of craft beer, light beers are still dominant. The craft beer explosion is a remarkable story, but perhaps we should stop calling it a revolution.

    For now, bland beers are still king.
     
    19.03.2018   USA: MillerCoors splits millennial generation with the purpose of selling more beer    ( E-malt.com )

    MillerCoors has invented a generation that’s younger than millennials but old enough to legally imbibe, the Toronto Star reported on March 14.

    The purpose is to sell more beer, which has been losing business to wine and hard liquor for a decade. MillerCoors, the U.S. division of Molson Coors Brewing Co., is gearing its marketing to 21- to 24-year-olds, a slice of the population the company characterizes as “curious,” “pragmatic” and still virginal when it comes to drinking beer.

    Demographers would say this cohort is part of the millennial generation, which outnumbers the baby boomers and is defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as people born between 1982 and 2000. But MillerCoors says there are important differences between millennials and the new generation the beer maker created but hasn’t named.

    “There’s just this more openness versus what we’ve seen with millennials,” said Sofia Colucci, senior director of innovation at MillerCoors. “They’re curious and while they’re pragmatic, they still have this genuine openness to discovering and trying new things.”

    These attributes apparently haven’t extended, even on a hot summer evening, to some of them ever sipping an icy cold mug of suds, Colucci said.

    “Once they’re of a legal drinking age, they might never even have had beer, which is different than what we’ve seen in the past,” Colucci said.

    Baby boomers are defined as having been born from 1946 to 1964. They’re followed by so-called Generation X, whose birthdays run from 1965 to 1981. Then came the millennials, comprised of 83 million people, or about one-quarter of the U.S. population, according to the U.S. Census. Those that MillerCoors categorizes separately from millennials would have entered the world from 1993 to 1997, roughly President Bill Clinton’s first term, a time when internet use was spreading, Hootie & the Blowfish ruled the pop-music charts and big beer brands were still hip.

    The product MillerCoors is pushing is called Two Hats, a light beer imbued with fruit flavours. The company said the tag line — “Good, cheap beer. Wait what?” — was taken directly from responses of drinkers in this newly distinct age group.

    Allen Adamson, co-founder of the product consultant Metaforce, defended splitting up the millennial generation. He said 21-year-olds are probably not making major decisions on items such as cars or homes, which are the focus of older millennials. Instead, the younger people are likely showing off their individual preferences with purchases such as beverages and clothing.

    “The whole lens of a 21-year-old is different in how you connect with them than a 28-year-old,” Adamson said. Still, the challenge with appealing to such a narrow demographic is it’s a quickly moving target, he said.

    Two Hats isn’t the first time a beer company has created a product to target specific consumers it identified as underserved.

    MillerCoors rival Anheuser-Busch InBev NV set out to win over women in 2015 with a Super Bowl ad campaign built around the idea that coming together over a Bud Light can help solve the world’s problems, including unequal pay for females. Attempts to attract women also led to the introduction of new products, such as the Bud Light Lime-A-Rita.

    The same year, MillerCoors said that making beer more “gender friendly” could add about 5 million barrels to sales by 2020. The Chicago-based unit of Molson Coors, which at the time was a joint venture between Molson Coors and SAB Miller Plc, added products to appeal to women, such as Henry’s Hard Sodas, fruit-flavoured shandies and gluten-free beer.

    Women, however, didn’t flock. Nor did health-conscious consumers, though they’re helping boost smaller-volume brands such as gluten-free Michelob Ultra and Sparkling Seltzer. Young millennials may be the industry’s last hope.

    “We’re really doing this as a way to grow affinity for beer,” Colucci said. “Then, as they evolve, as they drink Two Hats, the idea is that they’ll start to evolve their preferences and they can start to grow into other beers within our portfolio.”
     
    19.03.2018   World: AB InBev CEO believes in increased sales volume of low- and no-alcohol portfolio by 2025    ( E-malt.com )

    AB InBev CEO Carlos Brito believes 20% of the company’s sales volumes will come from its low- or no-alcohol portfolio by 2025.

    In a conference call following the release of AB InBev’s full-year results, Brito shed light on the company’s strategy to expand sales and appeal to consumers who want to limit their alcohol intake, FoodBev.com reported on March 2.

    He said that now around 8% of the company’s volumes came from its low- or no-alcoholic lines. “We want to get to 20% by 2025. So we’re not starting from zero, quite the opposite. The big thing that will accelerate this, in my view, is two things.

    “First, the category expansion model because it’s showing us there are opportunities in adjacencies, easy drinking and flavored liquids, that we can explore.

    “And the second one is that now we already have five of our main countries in which NABLAB, or non-alcohol beer and low-alcohol beer, represents more than 20% and in some even 30%.”

    Brito drew attention to the higher margins of the NABLAB sector. “I think this is going to be a big motivation for our people because they’re going to be inspired.

    “There is a toolkit to be shared with other countries. Again, so we’re not starting from zero, the margins are very interesting, and category expansion shows the way on how to use some of those products to enter new categories or new occasions.”

    AB InBev’s range of low- and no-alcohol beers includes Beck’s Blue, Bud Light and Corona Cero. Last year, the company launched an alcohol-free Budweiser Prohibition beer in the UK.

    Speaking of the launch, a spokesperson said: “Budweiser Prohibition is for those who love beer, who will never sacrifice on quality or taste and want to enjoy freely. After all, beer isn’t about alcohol; it’s about using the best, natural ingredients and brewing with passion.”

    An AB InBev study released in 2016 found that one third of UK consumers had tried alcohol-free beer with almost as many unable to tell the difference between regular alcoholic varieties.

    In its full-year results, the company saw its net sales rise 5.1% year-on-year to $56.4 billion and operating profits increase 13.4% to $22.1 billion as it benefited from the integration of SABMiller.
     
    16.03.2018   Two successful days: Petcore Europe Conference 2018 'Strategy for PET in the Circular Economy'    ( Company news )

    Company news Once per year Europe's entire PET value chain meets in Brussels for the annual Petcore Europe Conference. Due to its success in recent editions this year's conference was held for the first time over two days and welcomed more than 200 industry experts.

    On 7 and 8 February, more than 200 delegates from the entire PET value chain from Europe and beyond gathered in Brussels for the annual Petcore Europe Conference 2018.

    Under the theme “Strategy for PET in the Circular Economy”, the complete industry shared perspectives and strategies for a succesful future. From PET resin producers, masterbatch producers, packaging designers and manufacturers, equipment manufacturers, label producers to major brand owners, EPR schemes, waste management organisations, recyclers, waste sorting and recycling machinery manufacturers - the entire value chain was represented. Additionally, speakers from the European Commission (DG GROW), the Ellen MacArthur Foundation as well as PCI Wood Mackenzie shared their thoughts on the PET market as well as the plastics industry in the European Circular Economy.

    "Petcore Europe brings together the entire PET value chain. The strenght of the organisation is the engagement of its members, which are all participating actively in the working groups and other projects", emphasised Christian Crepet, Executive Director of Petcore Europe, when opening the conference on Wednesday, 7 February.

    "This engagement, in combination with Petcore Europe's commitment to improving the Circular Economy, is a great value for the entire industry. Petcore Europe's growth over the past years is remarkable. Every year the association can count on more and more members", added Paola Arlotti, President of Petcore Europe, before welcoming the first speaker on the stage. Read more about the conference in our press release.

    Petcore Europe Conference 2019
    The next Petcore Europe Conference will take place in the first quarter of 2019. The exact date and place will be announced in the second half of 2018.
    (Petcore Europe)
     
    15.03.2018   O-I's Containers Achieve Cradle to Cradle Certification    ( Company news )

    Company news First Food and Beverage Packaging Company to Achieve Gold Rating for Material Health

    Owens-Illinois, Inc. (NYSE: OI) is the first food and beverage packaging company to achieve a gold rating in material health on the Cradle to Cradle Product Scorecard.

    The Cradle to Cradle Certified(TM) Products Program is one of the premier sustainability certifications for products around the world and across industries. "The certification provides brand owners, consumers, regulators, and shareholders tangible validation of our company's ongoing commitment to sustainability," said Jim Nordmeyer, VP, Global Sustainability at O-I. "It's an important baseline and helps us identify next steps to improve our environmental and social performance."

    Nearly 90 percent of O-I's glass operations were certified across product categories and for certain container colors in the beer, non-alcoholic beverage (NAB), spirit, wine and food markets. The certification is based on five categories: material health, material reutilization, water stewardship, renewable energy use, and social fairness.

    "Achieving a gold rating in material health strongly reinforces the benefits of glass," said Nordmeyer. "Glass is safe for repeated food contact and endlessly recyclable. It's virtually impermeable to oxygen so it protects the freshness and taste of consumers' favorite food and beverage brands."

    O-I collaborated with an environmental consulting firm, MBDC, to conduct a rigorous product assessment of the company's beer, food, NAB, spirits and wine platforms.

    "We are thrilled to collaborate with Owens-Illinois. It is a company taking innovation to the next level, seeking ways to partner with other industry leaders to incorporate more recycled content, maximize use of renewable energy, and consider the full use cycle of its glass products," said Jay Bolus, President of Certification Services at MBDC, the world's foremost advisors in material health, product design and the Cradle to Cradle® Design Framework. "The company's continued pursuit of Cradle to Cradle certification signifies its brand quality and value for its consumers and the environment."

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes C2C certification as a top-tier product sustainability standard in its new federal green purchasing guidelines.
    (O-I Owens-Illinois Glass Containers)
     
    14.03.2018   automatica 2018 shows solutions for food and beverage, plastics and packaging manufacturers    ( Company news )

    Company news In September 2017, VDMA increased its growth forecast for the current year for German robotics and automation from seven to eleven percent. The industry is also booming internationally. With this positive outlook and numerous innovations ready to be shown, the world's leading companies are going to meet at automatica in Munich from June 19 to 22, 2018. Visitors from industries such as food and beverage, plastics as well as packaging will find numerous innovative automation solutions and have the opportunity to exchange ideas with experts.

    “Both the incoming orders as well as sales development for the current year have significantly exceeded our expectations,” Dr. Norbert Stein, Chairman of VDMA Robotics + Automation, commented on the development of the German market. “The domestic industry will record more than 14 billion euros in sales and for the first time in the year 2017 consequently reach a new record level.”

    The great economic importance of automation technology can also be felt on the global level: According to the International Federation of Robotics (IFR), more than 1.7 million new industrial robots will be installed in the factories all over the world by the year 2020, which will increase global inventory to more than three million units.

    The above-average growth in the automation industry in the past few years is due to the rapidly growing number of variants in many production fields, a zero-error strategy required more and more frequently during processes as well as increasing cost pressure, among other things. These requirements can only be fulfilled with higher degrees of automation, increasingly powerful systems and more flexible processes.

    The automotive industry and its suppliers have been the most important users of automation and robotic systems for many years. The use of automated processes in this industry segment is the most advanced, but many other sectors are also working increasingly with highly automated solutions for more efficiency and cost effectiveness. As a result, companies from the fields of plastics, foodstuffs and packaging are increasingly employing innovative automation to improve their competitive position. Compared to the pioneering automobile industry, however, these three industry sectors have some catching up to do.
    (Messe München GmbH)
     
    13.03.2018   Corvaglia group announces U.S. expansion in Georgia    ( Company news )

    Company news ‘We think about your caps, so you can think of everything else’

    Switzerland based corvaglia group announced plans to build a new manufacturing facility in Newnan, Georgia. The company provides plastic cap and closure technology solutions to the beverage industry around the world. The new U.S. production facility will compliment corvaglia’s existing advanced manufacturing operations in Eschlikon, Switzerland and Ixtlahuaca, Mexico.

    corvaglia’s business begins and ends with closure design and as a vertically integrated supplier of caps and closures for PET (polyethylene terephthalate) containers, they deliver expertise all along the value chain. Founded in 1991, corvaglia continues to focus on one-piece closure technologies deployed from the design concept all the way through to the consumer. This end-to-end market approach is embodied in their slogan ‘Think, Shape, Make, Apply’ caps.

    The new U.S. facility will be operational by year-end and utilize corvaglia’s in-house proprietary moulds to manufacture lightweight one-piece caps and closures for the North American beverage market. Additionally, corvaglia will bring high-speed digital printing to the new U.S. facility that will provide valuable branding opportunities with virtually no limitations to artwork or graphics.
    (Corvaglia Closures Eschlikon AG)
     
    12.03.2018   DNP and SIG create joint venture in Japan    ( Company news )

    Company news Tokyo-based Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd. (DNP) and SIG have signed a joint venture agreement which will bring new value added carton packaging and filling technology solutions to the Japanese food and beverage industry. The 50-50 joint venture will be established as of April 1, 2018, under the name of DNP • SIG Combibloc Co., Ltd., located in Tokyo.

    Photo: A joint venture has now been signed: Souichiro Nishitani, Corporate Officer and General Manager of Packaging Operations at DNP (left), and Rolf Stangl, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SIG.

    More differentiation
    The main focus of the partnership is to provide greater differentiation and added value in the field of carton packaging, technology and services for the food and beverages industry in Japan.

    Souichiro Nishitani, Corporate Officer and General Manager of Packaging Operations at DNP said: “The huge variety offered by the packaging system from SIG will enrich the Japanese market and offer clear added value for beverage manufacturers and consumers alike. The aim of our joint venture is to be Japan’s number 2 in aseptic carton packs by 2022.”
    Rolf Stangl, Chief Executive Officer at SIG added: “It is an exciting moment in our company's history. For many years we’ve looked into entering this big and promising market together with a perfect partner. We’ve now found this with DNP. Together with DNP, we are bringing innovative solutions to the food and beverage industry in Japan for current and next generation products.”

    Throughout its history DNP, one of the world’s largest printing industry manufacturers, has successfully established a multitude of business operations. For example, DNP has been developing and marketing carton packs and filling systems for alcoholic beverages and soft drinks in Japan since 1978. Many food and beverage manufacturers are also using DNP’s aseptic PET filling system. The company is ideally positioned in Japan, with substantial experience in the field of aseptic technology through its network of highly-qualified service technicians and established connections with all major companies in the food and beverage industry.
    (SIG Combibloc GmbH)
     
    09.03.2018   Customer portal e-connect goes live in North America    ( Company news )

    Company news ENGEL's new e-connect customer portal will be launched in North America in time for NPE2018: e-connect will simplify and speed up communication between processors and ENGEL while providing an overview of the machinery, the processing status of service and support orders and the price and availability of spare parts – any time, anywhere. From May 7 through 11, 2018, the Austria-based injection molding machine manufacturer and system solution provider will be demonstrating at its trade show booth W3303 in Orlando, Florida, how the new version of the customer portal is also ideally suited to meet the requirements of Industry 4.0.

    Photo: Fastest link to the world of ENGEL: the new version of the e-connect customer portal is even clearer.

    e-connect facilitates entry into the world of ENGEL and opens up new opportunities for injection molders to produce even more efficiently. “With the new software, we can now provide customers with more specific information at any time and independently of their location, establish contact with them even faster, and provide the best possible support to meet the challenges of Industry 4.0,” as Wolfgang Degwerth, Vice President Sales and Service at ENGEL Machinery Inc. in York, Pennsylvania, explains. "From now on, e-connect will be an important hub in the cooperation with our customers."

    From the first order, all machines and system solutions supplied by ENGEL are stored in the system, with the current status also shown. For the best possible overview, users can reproduce the structure of their individual machinery in the system and even assign production lines to different halls or departments online.

    No time to waste in support and service cases
    Making support and service enquiries online is not only convenient for users, but also speeds up order processing significantly. As soon as a customer makes a request, it is automatically forwarded to the service team so that they can start looking at it immediately. Since customers and service technicians use the same data, they have the same knowledge base at all times. In many cases, the system history this contains makes it easier to find a solution. This is also why each new service call is fully documented in e-connect. The portal makes all details relating to the service call transparent for the user, and store the service report. With sites on three continents, ENGEL ensures qualified service technicians from its internal workforce are available around the clock.

    In particular, e-connect facilitates the procurement of spare parts. As price and availability are stored on the system, the customer can directly request and download a quotation from the platform. Customers can also track the spare part online up to its arrival at their plant.

    Condition-based, predictive maintenance included
    e-connect supports all service products in ENGEL's inject 4.0 program. In addition to online support and remote maintenance, this includes e-connect.monitor for predictive, condition-based maintenance. The aim is to utilize the full lifespan of machine components while avoiding unscheduled system downtimes. To ensure this, sensors monitor the condition of components and residual life is calculated on the basis of mathematical models. While the condition of plasticising screws is determined in the course of regular servicing, spindles are subject to automatic online monitoring; in both cases, the results of the evaluation are stored in e-connect; they can be called up and processed by the customer at any time.

    ENGEL will also be integrating future service products for the smart factory into its customer portal. “We have structured the platform so that we can quickly implement further demands of advancing digitalization,” says Wolfgang Degwerth.

    More clarity, simpler navigation
    In addition to new functions, e-connect now offers greater clarity and transparency and even simpler navigation. The platform provides users with a constant wealth of information, from product descriptions and event news to latest reports from the world of ENGEL and the details of contact persons. A calendar contains the dates of trade fairs and booked seminars, while ENGEL’s e-learning platform is just one click away via e-connect.

    ENGEL at NPE2018: West Hall, Booth W3303
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    09.03.2018   GualapackGroup to open a new plant in Chile    ( Company news )

    Company news GualapackGroup, the World Leader of premade spouted pouches, continues its expansion in LATAM countries with the start of a brand new facility in Chile. Located close to Santiago, the new plant will be dedicated to pouches and spouted pouches production. “That new investment will strengthen our position in LATAM, a strategic area for our Group and, together with our existing subsidiaries in Costa Rica and Brazil, will consolidate our production platform on the Central and South American continent. Our vision remains, just like we did in Europe within the last 5 years, to invest in regional production sites in order to provide our local partners the best logistics and a proximity service” said Michele Guala, The GualapackGroup’s CEO.

    The new facility shall achieve its full production capacity by spring 2018.
    (Gualapack S.p.A.)
     
    08.03.2018   3rd European Food & Beverage Plastic Packaging Summit on 14th & 15th March 2018 in Amsterdam    ( Company news )

    Company news Venue of the Summit:
    Park Plaza Victoria Amsterdam
    Damrak 1-5, 1012 LG
    Amsterdam, Netherlands

    Key Topics Include:
    • Market trends for sustainable packaging in 2018 and beyond
    • Latest innovations in design, manufacturing, additive and convertor technology
    • Case studies from retailers/brands on packaging and design needs in the food & beverage industry
    • What does the European Commission circular economy package mean for the plastics packaging supply chain
    • Expectations and targets of EU waste legislation on packaging and packaging waste
    • Analysis and comparison of performance materials in different applications
    • Advancing plastics converters and manufacturer's capabilities and technologies
    • Life cycle assessments and environmental impact

    Why You Can't Miss this Event?
    ACI's 3rd European Food & Beverage Plastic Packaging will take place on 14th & 15th March 2018 in Amsterdam.
    This edition will focus on the best strategies for sustainable packaging including recycling and packaging performance, with a stronger focus on the brands and retailers, who will share their thoughts and information on consumer experience and demands for next generation of packaging.

    Furthermore, the conference will also explore the European Commission’s Circular Economy Package, and its impact in the entire supply chain dynamics as well as use of bioplastics, biodegradable & compostable plastics, as well as the latest innovations in the market for printing and labelling. Join us in Amsterdam to hear latest case studies from industry leaders, take part in interactive panels discussions & benefit from excellent networking opportunities.
    (Active Communications International (ACI Europe))
     
    08.03.2018   UPM Raflatac expands Lite range of ecodesigned labeling solutions with new PP Silver Lite film    ( Company news )

    Company news UPM Raflatac has expanded its PP Lite range of labeling solutions for the European market with the introduction of a new clear film, PP Silver Lite. The face materials, adhesives, and backing used in the PP Lite range offer brands new ways to achieve their sustainability objectives.

    PP Lite label materials offer brand owners the opportunity to differentiate themselves from the competition by becoming a leader in sustainable product labeling while boosting productivity across the value chain at the same time. By combining a lighter face material, a lower coat-weight adhesive, and a lighter backing, products in the PP Lite range optimize raw material use and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, energy and water consumption, and waste.

    In line with the PP Lite concept, PP Silver Lite is a multi-purpose label material suitable for labeling rigid containers with smooth surfaces in beverage and home and personal care applications.

    "Our Label Life demonstrates that by replacing conventional PP label materials with our PP Lite solutions, brand owners can optimize raw material use and make sustainability gains through a lower environmental footprint," explains Jan Hasselblatt, Director, Global Business Development, UPM Raflatac. "With the addition of PP Silver Lite, the range allows brands to take their packaging designs one step further while improving productivity and demonstrating their commitment to sustainable packaging."
    (UPM Raflatac Oy)
     
    07.03.2018   CRAFT DRINKS INDIA: the newest member of the Beviale Family     ( Company news )

    Company news The global network of the Beviale Family is constantly growing. The latest addition to the beverage production segment is CRAFT DRINKS INDIA, which will take place for the first time on 4 and 5 July 2018 at the White Orchid Convention Center in Bangalore. The event is primarily designed for brewers, microbrewers, craft brewers and distributors, but also for newcomers seeking advice and inspiration. International manufacturers and suppliers will present their solutions at the trade fair, the focus of which will be the production of craft beer, craft spirits and wine. VLB, the Berlin-based Research and Teaching Institute for Brewing, has partnered with us to develop the conference programme. CRAFT DRINKS INDIA will be organised by NürnbergMesse India in conjunction with Indian exhibition company PDA Trade Fairs, and is tailored to the needs and interests of the fast-growing beverage market in India.

    The Indian market for alcoholic drinks is developing rapidly and is one of the fastest growing beverage markets worldwide. In particular, the number of microbreweries and craft breweries is increasing steadily by around 7.5 percent a year. Whereas according to BMI Research, which is cited by the All India Brewing Association, there were just two micro-breweries registered in 2008, by 2016 there were more than 80. “Compared with Germany or the rest of Europe the numbers are still relatively low,” explains Andrea Kalrait, Director Exhibition BrauBeviale and international product manager for the Beviale Family. “But we are really noticing the momentum in the market and our new Beviale Family member is designed to take account of this. We are really looking forward to the premiere in July.” Bangalore, the cosmopolitan metropolis in the south of India, is regarded as the heart of the country's craft beer and craft drinks scene. “This makes it the ideal venue for this new member of the Beviale Family,” Kalrait says confidently.

    PDA Trade Fairs is also looking forward to the premiere in July. “The synergies between NürnbergMesse India and PDA Trade Fairs are a strong driver making CRAFT DRINKS INDIA a complex event that covers numerous aspects of the sector and therefore promises to be highly relevant to all participants.”
    (NürnbergMesse GmbH)
     
    07.03.2018   SIG and ProLeiT offer integrated solutions for smart and automated factories     ( Company news )

    Company news SIG has partnered with ProLeiT, a leading provider of automation and process control systems, to co-create innovative manufacturing solutions for food, beverage and dairy producers.

    Photo: SIG and ProLeiT confirm their partnership - from left: Stefan Mergel (SIG), Torsten Stollenwerk (SIG), Dr. Daryoush Sangi (SIG), Dr.Thomas Wunderlich (ProLeiT), Rudi Lippert (ProLeiT).

    SIG is one of the world’s leading solution providers for the food and beverage industry within the field of carton packs and filling technology, and with its new partnership with ProLeiT will be able to offer producers advanced production technology and integrated software solutions.

    ProLeiT is an expert within the field of Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES), enabling manufacturers to automate and control their production processes. This new partnership will allow both companies to combine their expertise for the joint development of innovative MES products for the food and beverage industry.

    SIG’s new strategic collaboration supports its commitment to build smarter, more automated plants as part of its Smart Factory segment. This solution-driven and value-added platform is helping SIG to deliver IoT-enabled systems and technical services that transform filling plants into connected factories securing the highest efficiency, flexibility and quality.

    “Digitisation is an important issue for all companies today, and the Internet of Things is constantly increasing in scope and relevance,” said Dr. Thomas Wunderlich, Vice President Sales, Dairies & Beverages, ProLeiT AG. “It’s therefore crucial for us to work with partners who develop innovative technologies and strategies together with us when implementing new application scenarios.”

    “With our partnership with SIG, we combine industry knowledge, an understanding of our customers' requirements and the solution portfolio of both providers to create a strong presence in the market. We look forward to opening a new chapter in MES development together with SIG."

    Dr. Daryoush Sangi, Head of Production Engineering & Strategic Partnerships at SIG, added: "We chose this partnership because we are convinced that with ProLeiT we have found a highly competent partner for MES solutions to offer our customers complete data processing solutions in the context of a Smart Factory.”
    (SIG Combibloc GmbH)
     
    06.03.2018   KHS Innoket Roland 40: compact labeling machine for the beverage and food industries    ( Company news )

    Company news With the Innoket Roland 40 the KHS Group has launched a compact labeler to market. The KHS Innoket Neo’s little brother has a capacity of 2,500 to 25,000 containers per hour and is thus specifically tailored to the requirements of the food industry.

    -Space-saving table machine for the low capacity range
    -High-quality mechanical design based on the Innoket Neo
    -Many expansion options for individual requirements

    Photo: The Innoket Roland 40 is the little brother of the Innoket Neo, suitable for outputs of between 2,500 and 25,000 containers per hour.

    Dortmund, February 13, 2018 – With the Innoket Roland 40 the KHS Group has launched a compact labeler to market. The KHS Innoket Neo’s little brother has a capacity of 2,500 to 25,000 containers per hour and is thus specifically tailored to the requirements of the food industry. The Innoket Roland 40 can be fitted with various labeling stations and is characterized by its ease of use and the accustomed high quality offered by KHS.

    “The machine is specially geared towards lines with a low output,” explains Cornelius Adolf, labeling product manager at KHS. During development particular attention was paid to simple operation and a high degree of economy. The table machine is not only of interest to craft breweries but also to companies in the food sector, such as manufacturers of canned food, sauces or dressings./p>

    In its standard version the Innoket Roland 40 comes with two cold glue stations. This allows shoulder and neck labels to be applied at two levels by the first station, for instance, with the second station affixing back labels to the bottles. Alternatively, self-adhesive stations, a combination of cold glue and self-adhesive technology and hot melt labeling processes can be used.

    Proven components from the high-capacity range
    Inside the Innoket Roland 40 are countless quality-determining components taken from the established high-performance KHS Innoket Neo labeling machine. These include the carousel, infeed and discharge stars, folding doors, installation and format parts and guides and on the cold glue station the gripper cylinder and label magazine. The Innoket Neo servo feed screw has also been applied and integrated here, permitting gentle bottle stops.

    Plenty of upwards scope
    The KHS development also provides many different opportunities for extension to cater for individual labeling tasks. It is possible, for example, to equip the Innoket Roland 40 with the KHS VarioDrive electronic bottle plate control system. Other options include mechanical alignment by side notch in the infeed star and the fitting of traveling applicators, the latter used for cap or lid labels. U-shaped labels – as tamper-evident seals for twist-off caps, for instance – can also be labeled and rolled on. Optional sensors check for the presence of labels at certain points, for example in the label magazine or on the gluing roller, and for other factors such as broken bottles. With its many expansion options the KHS Innoket Roland 40 is thus perfectly suited to cater for all requirements in the low capacity range.

    At Anuga FoodTec the Innoket Roland 40 demonstrates its perfect suitability for the food industry through its point of display alone. The technology can be viewed live not at the KHS booth but at Florin Gesellschaft für Lebensmitteltechnologie mbH at booth E20/F29 in hall 10.1 where the system designed for an output of 2,500 to 25,000 containers per hour will be exhibited.
    (KHS GmbH)
     
    05.03.2018   Massive Increase In StarLeaf™ Stevia Planting: PureCircle Plans Massive Increase ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... In StarLeaf™ Stevia Planting This Year

    Company Significantly Boosting Supply Capacity Of Its Proprietary StarLeaf™ Stevia Plant That Yields High Amounts of Best-Tasting Stevia Sweeteners

    PureCircle (LSE: PURE), the world’s leading producer and innovator of great-tasting stevia sweeteners for the global beverage and food industries, announces that it will vastly increase the amount of StarLeaf™ stevia it plants in 2018. It plans to plant nearly 16,000 tons in 2018, an increase of about 200% over the prior year. As with any agricultural crop, these plans are subject to various conditions such as weather.

    PureCircle’s StarLeaf™ is a proprietary non-GMO stevia plant that yields roughly 20 times more of the newest and best-tasting stevia leaf sweeteners than conventional stevia varieties. These stevia sweeteners make it far easier for food and beverage companies to deliver great-tasting, sugar-reduced and sugar-free products across a wide range of food and beverage categories. And it allows them to do that with a plant-based sweetener.

    With the planned increases in planting, the company estimates that 80% of the stevia plants it uses this year will be StarLeaf™ — likely increasing to 90% next year. Expanding the planting and use of its proprietary StarLeaf™ stevia leaf will enable the company to meet the increasing demand of food and beverage industries for the best-tasting – and most sugar-like – zero-calorie, stevia sweeteners.

    PureCircle utilizes a wide and expanding global agricultural network for its stevia supply, sourcing it from an increasing number of countries around the world. Part of the dramatic increase in StarLeaf™ planting this year is the result of our new farming partnerships in North Carolina. Some farmers there – working with PureCircle — are starting to use land that once grew tobacco, to grow StarLeaf™ plants. Planting stevia enables them to grow and sell a highly-sought after crop, the demand for which is growing, and to productively use their farming acreage.

    The food and beverage industry has seen a steady increase in product launches featuring stevia as an ingredient, as evidenced by the 10% increase in 2017 as compared to 2016 according to Mintel. In 2017 alone, about 3,500 products launched with stevia. Since the first regulatory green light in the U.S. in 2008 for use of stevia leaf ingredients in foods and beverages, it has been utilized in more than 16,000 products globally. Consumer awareness of stevia is growing, and stevia is viewed favorably by consumers, who continue to seek out stevia as their preferred plant-based, zero-calorie sweetener.

    James Foxton, Vice President of Agriculture Operations at PureCircle, said:
    “We are excited about our StarLeaf™ stevia expansion program. It is a testament to our world-class agronomy program, and is enabling PureCircle to deliver the best-tasting stevia varieties on a global scale. Products from this leaf are revolutionizing the way our customers work with and adopt stevia. We look forward to providing food and beverage companies access to the most sugar-like content from the leaf, at a scale which has never before been possible.”

    By way of background, the story of stevia is evolving. Not long ago, it was a little known, plant-based zero-calorie sweetener – basically one ingredient — that worked well in some beverage and food applications.

    But today, due largely to PureCircle’s research, development and innovation, we offer a range of stevia-based sweetener ingredients with sugar-like taste and zero calories. These from-nature sweeteners — often used in combinations with each other — work well in a wide variety of beverages and foods, and that is advantageous for beverage and food companies. They have an increasing need for just such an ingredient, because consumers, health experts and governments have become increasingly concerned about obesity and diabetes, and have also become increasingly health and wellness conscious.

    PureCircle has developed solutions for food and beverage producers both to enhance their use of stevia for best taste and also to simplify their work with stevia. PureCircle offers tailored combinations of stevia ingredients designed to address the unique sweetening needs of various food and beverage categories. That makes the food and beverage producers’ formulation work easier. PureCircle’s production capability enables us to quickly meet global customer demands.
    (PureCircle Corporate Headquarters)
     
    02.03.2018   Tanqueray Rangpur gets refreshed look as it launches into new markets    ( Company news )

    Company news TANQUERAY, the bartenders’ favourite gin, has unveiled a stunning new look for TANQUERAY Rangpur alongside the news that it’s extending its distribution into new markets.

    Named after an exotic lime which originated from India, TANQUERAY Rangpur is a light, easy-drinking gin with a juicy citrus taste, making it the perfect gin for the summer.

    Since it first launched in 2006, TANQUERAY Rangpur has been winning top awards, including Double Gold at the prestigious San Francisco World Spirits Competition and is already an established favourite in most of Europe, USA and Canada. Now, due to popular demand, it will be available in Brazil, Australia, Colombia and Greece from January 2018.

    To celebrate this announcement, a new bottle design will also hit the shelves across all markets, shining a light on the zesty flavour and rich, innovative heritage of TANQUERAY Rangpur. Through citrus imagery as well as a delicate, Raj-inspired, border in classic TANQUERAY green, it tells a visual story of its signature ingredient, Rangpur, a lime which originated from India. For the first time it also introduces the signature of the brand’s founder – Charles Tanqueray.

    TANQUERAY Global Marketing Manager, Joanna Segesser said, “It’s an extremely exciting time for gin. It’s a category which is growing at a phenomenal rate with TANQUERAY at the forefront. This is the reason why we are refreshing the look and extending the reach of TANQUERAY Rangpur into new countries.

    “Like our founder, who searched the globe for the perfect ingredients, we believe that ‘It’s what you put in’ that matters and TANQUERAY Rangpur is no different. Distilled with rare Rangpur limes, the result is a distinctive zesty flavour.”

    “Our new look bottle reflects this rich heritage and its exotic flavour, while paying homage to the ultimate gin pioneer – Charles Tanqueray.”

    As TANQUERAY Rangpur continues to reach more consumers, TANQUERAY Ginstorian, Jo McKerchar explained that attention to quality and ingenuity has always been at the heart of this brand from the beginning:
    “TANQUERAY’s founder, Charles Tanqueray, was an innovator in the world of gin. In 1830 he set out to make the world’s finest gin. He poured his heart into it, creating over 300 recipes in pursuit of the definitive gin. It was that same dedication and experimentation that led to the creation of TANQUERAY Rangpur in 2006.

    “As other younger brands begin to experiment with their gin recipes, we are proud of our successful legacy of innovation and experimentation that spans nearly two centuries.”

    TANQUERAY Rangpur joins the award-winning portfolio of TANQUERAY that includes TANQUERAY London Dry and TANQUERAY No. Ten as well as limited editions such as Malacca, Old Tom and Bloomsbury.

    TANQUERAY Rangpur has an ABV of 41.3%.
    (Diageo plc)
     
    01.03.2018   Fewer rejects and greater energy efficiency    ( Company news )

    Company news At the launch in North America, ENGEL will be demonstrating iQ flow control live at NPE2018, from May 7th to 11th in Orlando, Florida. The integrated temperature-control solution improves the stability of injection molding processes, reduces rejects and boosts energy efficiency.

    Photo: Thanks to the e-temp temperature control units, ENGEL has become a system solutions provider in the field of temperature control of injection molding processes.

    "Most rejects in injection molding are the result of temperature control errors," says Joachim Kragl, Director of Advanced Molding Systems and Processing at ENGEL Machinery Inc. in York, Pennsylvania. "This explains why the processors' focus is increasingly shifting to mold temperature control." With flomo, ENGEL laid the groundwork for more transparency and consistency in the temperature control process as one of the pioneers in this field back at K 2010. ENGEL flomo, an electronic temperature control water manifold system, replaces the maintenance-intensive cooling water distributors and even the basic version can individually monitor and document all cooling and temperature control circuits. The next generation e-flomo is further able to actively control either the flow rates or the temperature difference (ΔT) in all individual circuits. The advantage of ΔT control is the automatic setting of the individually required flow rate for each temperature control circuit.

    On-demand pump control
    iQ flow control sees ENGEL taking the next step. The software networks the temperature control units and the injection molding machine to create a single unit and, based on the measured values determined by e-flomo, controls the pump speed in the temperature control units on demand. While e-flomo increases the process stability which consequently reduces the risk of rejects, automatic speed adjustment ensures that temperature control requires substantially less energy.

    Since the pump operates on-demand rather than at maximum output all the time, stress on moving parts is reduced and temperature control units have a longer service life, which makes it possible to extend the maintenance cycles. This allows for further substantial savings. In conventional operations, regular maintenance of the temperature control units, including the downtime associated with it, is a major cost factor.

    As an integrated solution, the entire temperature control process can be set up, monitored and centrally logged at the CC300 machine control display while the ideal operating point for the particular temperature control unit is determined and set automatically. This allows injection molding shops to fully leverage their injection molding machines' potential without the system operators needing special training.

    Self-optimizing machine
    To integrate the temperature control units with the CC300 control unit on the injection molding machine, ENGEL collaborated with temperature control unit manufacturer HB-Therm (St. Gallen, Switzerland), to develop the temperature control unit series known as e-temp. The extremely compact devices are networked with the injection molding machine via OPC UA (Open Platform Communication Unified Architecture). With its service-oriented, platform-independent and freely scalable structure, this communications model offers great flexibility. A high degree of data security is guaranteed by the technical safety features that are an integral part of the architecture.

    OPC UA is becoming increasingly popular in the plastics industry for networking injection molding machines, peripherals, sensors and applications and is an important component of the inject 4.0 platform by ENGEL. Thanks to inject 4.0, ENGEL is helping clients pave the way to the smart factory, with continuously self-optimizing production processes. Self-regulating systems such as iQ flow control play a key role in creatring smart machines.

    ENGEL at NPE2018: Hall West, Stand W3303
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    28.02.2018   PepsiCo/Marvel Studios: Black Panther packaging stages the worldwide movie launch    ( Company news )

    Company news When the US-American Marvel Studios launched their new blockbuster "Black Panther" world-wide on 15 February, a package played the lead role: With a particularly exciting promotion in the shape of a spectacular package for Brisk Iced Tea, sponsor PepsiCo (USA) pitched the event to the opinion leaders. Designed to perfectly match the look & feel of the cult movie, the packaging showcases the "Black Panther character" with all the senses. The company Karl Knauer, packaging specialist with headquarters in Biberach/Germany, produced the package that is worthy of an Oscar.

    "This extraordinary project tops everything we ever developed and produced before," says Martin Glatz, Head of Marketing at Karl Knauer. "Together with PepsiCo and Marvel Studios and supported by a network of strong partners, such as "buch exklusiv“ and "Highlight Media", we set off a firework of finishing techniques."

    Everybody who gets the chance to see the package will immediately understand Martin Glatz's enthusiasm: Produced in a 3D printer with high-end finishing, a can of the PepsiCo brand "Brisk" designed to look like the movie hero "Black Panther" is set up on a small "stage" with side parts that fold out, making it resemble the interior of their hi-tech stealth ships. The surprising stage effect occurring when the all-black packaging is opened was created by means of embossing in all facets, 20 seconds of light choreography, and sophisticated folding mechanisms.

    Illumination orchestration with HiLight-smart LEDs® technology
    Obviously, you need plenty of technology and know-how to implement this marvel. This is why Karl Knauer, known as the innovator of the industry, was awarded the contract: Implemented with the newly developed and patented HiLight-smart LEDs® technology, a spectacular illumination orchestration in the form of an ultra-thin layer was integrated in the three rear walls. When the Black Panther logo is pressed, the light show starts in five separately controlled zones. The light show can be re-started at any time and gives a perfect taste of the magic of the movie.

    The robust packaging which contains high-quality rigid box material, finished with 3D UV paint on uncoated paperboard, provides a touch and feel that perfectly represents the native setting of “Wakanda” in the movie. In terms of appearance and functionality, the technically fully mature package is a treat.

    As a bonus, a replica of the characters prized Kimoyo beads are included, packaged in high-finish rigid box material with a laser-cut styrofoam bed.
    Additionally, the entire set is also environmentally friendly! The batteries can be removed from their easy-to-open compartment and disposed of properly, or exchanged for continued enjoyment of the illumination. "The illuminated Black Panther package is unique in all aspects. I reckon that it will become a highly coveted object immediately, and will certainly be a sought-after collector's item," says Martin Glatz.
    (Karl Knauer KG)
     
    28.02.2018   Scotch Whisky industry to phase out use of plastic straws    ( Company news )

    Company news The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) is to phase out the use of plastic straws and stirrers as part of the industry's continuing commitment to environmental sustainability.

    The SWA's Environmental Strategy - first launched in 2009 and the only one of its kind covering an entire Scottish sector - set a series of ambitious targets, including a commitment that by 2020 all product packaging will be 100% recyclable.

    The commitment of the SWA to phase out the use of plastic straws and stirrers and replace them with new environmentally friendly biodegrable alternatives is a logical extension of that goal. The SWA will also encourage members to follow suit, and Diageo, Pernod Ricard and Bacardi have already announced that they will takes steps to use biodegradable alternatives across their businesses.

    Commenting, SWA Chief Executive Karen Betts said:
    "The Scotch Whisky industry takes sustainability very seriously. Through our Environment Strategy, the industry is taking steps to reduce its impact on the environment, including action to reduce non-fossil fuel use, increase recycling and ensure efficient use of water.

    "Our commitment to phasing out the use of all plastic straws and stirrers from all our offices, industry and events is yet another signal of our commitment to the environment.

    "It is encouraging to see Scotch Whisky producers taking steps to phase out unnecessary plastics. We hope that this SWA commitment will lead to the industry uniting behind biodegradable alternatives so that Scotch Whisky cocktails can continue to be enjoyed without discarded plastics continuing to have a damaging impact on land as well as at sea."
    (SWA The Scotch Whisky Association)
     
    27.02.2018   Australia: AB InBev's Pirate Life to build the largest craft brewery in South Australia    ( E-malt.com )

    Craft brewer Pirate Life has announced it will develop a A$15 mln site at Port Adelaide, creating the largest craft brewery in the state of South Australia, the Business Chief Australia reported on February 13.

    The company was recently acquired by the world’s largest beer producing company, Belgium’s AB InBev, and it appears its mammoth spending power is being put into practice.

    Pirate Life wants to nearly quadruple its output from 3 mln to 11 mln litres annually. It currently produces a range of different beer, from stouts and IPAs to golden ale and American-style hoppy pale ales.

    Set up in 2014, Pirate Life has grown enormously in a short time, shown by the fact it produced just 600,000 litres in its first year compared to the 11 mln litres it now wants to make.

    Co-founder Red Proudfoot told ABC: “We've been looking around for a new site for quite a while, looked at a number of locations, loved the Port and identified this gorgeous old wool store.”

    He was joined in setting up the company by two fellow Western Australians, who decided that South Australia was the best base to grow the company from. Pirate Life already exports to the likes of New Zealand and the UK.
     
    27.02.2018   Hong Kong: Gweilo Beer ready to launch its new US$5 mln brewery    ( E-malt.com )

    The transformation of Hong Kong craft beer company Gweilo Beer, from humble beginnings operating in a spare bedroom to a purpose-built, 1,300-square-metre (14,000-square-foot), US$5 million brewery, is almost in the can, the South China Morning Post reported on February 14.

    Brewing trials began on February 8 and tests are almost complete on a state-of-the-art, US$1.2 million Italian canning machine, capable of producing 6,000 cans per hour. The facility in Fo Tan, in Hong Kong’s New Territories, will be Hong Kong’s largest craft-beer brewery and one of  Asia’s most advanced. Full-scale production is slated to start at the end of this month.

    Moving to its own brewery is necessary because Gweilo – which Ian Jebbitt, 33, co-founded in 2015 with his wife, Emily, 34, and their friend Joe Gould, 35, who are all British – could not meet rising demand at the shared premises it was using.

    Ian Jebbitt says: “There’s growing interest in craft beers – beer with no additives or preservatives, made in smaller batches with traceability, and created with a bit of love and passion.”

    Since October, brewing equipment from Canada, a bottling machine from Germany capable of producing 3,000 bottles an hour, a centrifuge from Sweden, a  custom-made chiller from the US and the Italian canning machine, have been shipped and installed.

    “The project has almost doubled in budget and we have had delays but come the end of February, we will be ready to showcase our new line-up – and we couldn’t be more excited,” says Ian Jebbitt, an intellectual-property lawyer who first brewed beer at the age of seven at home with his father.

    The new brewery has been built in conjuction with BCI Engineering, who American Scott Powrie, Jebbitt’s friend and fellow home brewer from Mui Wo on Hong Kong’s Lantau Island, works for. CLI Engineering is an industrial accelerator whose owners also have a passion for craft beer.

    Powrie, 39, says: “We’ve had equipment coming from all four corners of the world and this is the first project of this size and scale in Hong Kong. “We were in unchartered territory, as a lot of the contractors had never done things on this scale before.”

    The South China Morning Post had a sneak preview of the facility, where teams have worked around the clock  to build walls, install new electricity and gas supplies, and tip up 17 tanks,  including 12  that are more than six metres tall, which will hold the company’s expanded range of beers.

    “There were a few scared faces when the chain block broke as we tipped up one 14,000-litre tank and she rocked backwards and forwards before finally settling in place,” Emily Jebbitt says.

    She says the team has spared no expense to create the best possible beers and has shipped ingredients from the US, Britain, Vietnam, Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand and Thailand in preparation for the new beer range.

    “Gweilo will have some of the most sophisticated equipment in Asia. We’ve gone all out with the equipment we’ve bought, the ingredients we will be using and the team we’ve hired,” Emily Jebbitt says.

    “We all love Hong Kong and have made it our home; we want to help elevate the craft-beer scene in Hong Kong and really put the city on the world map,” as a great beer-producing area.

    American Matt Walsh, formerly head brewer at Modern Times Beer, Lost Coast, Speakeasy and Karl Strauss in the US, has joined the company and been busy finalising recipes. Walsh, 43, says: “The great thing about working for a smaller brewery like Gweilo is I have much more freedom to be creative. They actively encourage me to go wild.”

    A major focus in the future for Gweilo’s expanded team of 13 staff will be to lead the shift from bottles to cans. 

    American assistant brewer Justin Jackson, 36, is a former physics teacher, owner of Back to School Brewing and chairman of the Home Brew Association. 

    “Cans are the way forward. They protect the beer by completely blocking out damage caused by light … [and] keep dissolved oxygen levels – the main enemy of a brewer – extremely low, which leads to fresher beer for longer. They are also more environmentally friendly,” Jackson says.

    Ian Jebbitt says: “In hiring Justin, not only have we hired a great assistant brewer, but also someone that can help us connect with and support Hong Kong’s growing home brewing community.”

    Gould says the Gweilo brand has been refreshed, too, with the  dictionary definition of gweilo – Cantonese slang for Westerner – given a new place on its label.

    The current Gweilo IPA and Gweilo Pale recipes will stay the same, but as the brewer is introducing a limited-edition 1,000-litre experimental  range, it has changed its Gweilo Wit recipe, and stopped using mango and kaffir lime. 

    The Gweilo Brewery is capable of producing 6,000 cans per hour at its premises in Fo Tan. It plans to offer a big choice of beers, including core, quarterly seasonal, collaboration and sour-beer ranges and a barrel-ageing programme, in addition to the 1,000-litre range.

    “With the 1,000-litre range, we aim to make as many batches of limited-edition beers as the market will consume to help educate people on the different styles that exist and push the boundaries, to test  their  perception of what craft beer is and can be,” Ian Jebbitt says.

    “We want to use the 1,000-litre range as a testing ground to try and make a style of beer which becomes  synonymous  with Hong Kong.”
     
    27.02.2018   What's Happening to Diet Coke®? Oh, Nothing. And Everything.    ( Company news )

    Company news Diet Coke — the same crisp, iconic taste launched in 1982 O.G. Diet Coke — isn’t changing. (You don’t mess with a good thing.)

    But the Diet Coke you think you know is history. We’re re-launching with a bold new look, a fresh attitude, and four delicious new flavors, which join the iconic original.

    Why?
    Because every good icon knows that evolution is everything. That’s why we’re rolling out a modern design and adding new sleek cans – still 12 ounces with that old-school Diet Coke vibe and great taste.

    Because after speaking to more than 10,000 people and spending years exploring all kinds of combinations like tropical, citrus and even botanical notes, we found magic. Introducing Diet Coke Ginger Lime, Diet Coke Feisty Cherry, Diet Coke Zesty Blood Orange and Diet Coke Twisted Mango into the Diet Coke family. Trust us when we say, you haven’t tasted anything like this before.

    And finally, we’re switching things up because change is delicious and because we can.

    So whether you’re a longtime fan, or just the type who’s down to try new things, give Diet Coke a taste and you’ll see what we’re talking about.
    (The Coca-Cola Company)
     


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