Alcoa will spend $40m to increase production of its specialty foils for aseptic and flexible packages at its rolling mill in Itapissuma, Brazil, creating 50 extra jobs.
Work is underway and commissioning is expected to begin in 2016.
The news comes one month after Aquilino Paolucci, 49, took over as president of Alcoa, Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).
Prior to the role, he was VP, business development and regional affairs, Latin America. He succeeds Franklin Feder who is retiring from Alcoa in August 1 after 23 years with the company.
Paolucci said the million dollar investment is thanks to increased demand for foil packaging in Brazil.
“Consumers prefer this type of packaging because it keeps products fresher for longer,” said Paolucci.
According to Abal (Associação Brasileira do Alumínio), the Brazilian Aluminum Association, growth in this sector is expected to rise 7% annually over the next three years due to population growth and consumer preference.
He added flexible packaging made from specialty aluminium foil ‘is the most highly differentiated type of container’.
“Food and beverage companies around the world use aseptic packaging, which allows liquid food products to retain more nutrients and taste, and remain ready for consumption for up to 12 months, even if its unrefrigerated,” he said.
“The packages, more than 175bn of which were delivered globally in 2013, are typically a mix of materials such as cardboard type paper, plastics and thin aluminium.”
Itapissuma packaging facility is located in Pernambuco, Brazil, which is in the Recife region, and employs approximately 700 people.
Paolucci joined Alcoa in 2004 and has 28 years’ experience in finance, including as CFO for Alcoa LAC and CFO of the Brazilian subsidiaries of Pharmacia & Upjohn and Monsanto, after the two pharmaceutical companies merged.
He also introduced Compaq Computer and the American National Can Company, now part of Rexam Can, to the Brazil market.