Sidel has inaugurated its new plant in Parma, Italy, an international manufacturing centre dedicated to the assembly of filling machines.
Sidel CEO Gérard Stricher said that the opening of the plant was a major step in the execution of the company's strategy to provide complete bottling lines for liquid foods in plastic packages.
The new plant in Parma triples the company's current filler production capacity for aseptic, water and carbonated beverage applications.
In recent years Sidel has been building its business in filling technologies by acquiring capabilities in various specialised areas. The group says that the creation of this manufacturing arm should allow it to concentrate its filler production operations in a single location for still beverages, carbonated beverages and aseptic filling (of fruit juices, dairy products, teas and flavoured waters).
The Parma manufacturing facility is located in the heart of an industrial area that serves all food-related industries. The group says that the investment has a dual objective. First, the plant offers mass production capabilities to reduce manufacturing times while guaranteeing top quality. Second, it provides additional resources to promote engineering developments so that the company can speed up advancements in existing products and the invention of new technologies for the future.
The group aims for this to be a key resource in its manufacturing organisation, which currently encompasses operations in 10 countries (Canada, the US, Chile, Brazil, France, Portugal, Italy, Malaysia, India and the Philippines).
The Parma plant will play a significant part in Sidel's ambitions to become the world leader in complete lines for filling liquid foods in plastic packages. In addition, the company will benefit from its proximity to Tetra Pak's manufacturing and technological capabilities at its location in Modena. Sidel became a part of the Tetra Pak Group at the beginning of this year, after EC approval was granted for the deal to go ahead following lengthy negotiations.
With this new plant, Sidel's annual production capacity will jump from 50 to 150 fillers. The 10,000 square metre facility has 25 assembly/run-off stations. Each station is equipped with cold water and compressed air supply lines, and each of these versatile stations is equipped to assemble all filler models. The plant's installed power capacity totals 3.2 megawatts.
The site's 10-metre high interior allows powerful (up to 23-ton) overhead travelling cranes to handle equipment loading and unloading anywhere in the plant, which Sidel claims will enable even the largest filling machines to be assembled, thus expanding the use of productive space within the facility.
Security is a vital factor in a filler's performance, and security has greatly influenced the construction of this site, the group says. Everything at the plant has been designed to protect liquid foods. The floors have been specially treated to keep dust from forming, and they are cleaned daily with a special cleaning solution. All of the lines are made of stainless steel. And finally, the shop's radiant heating system, installed in the ceiling, prevents any turbulence from causing dust to collect. This, the group says, means that equipment is produced in an environment that is clean, protected, and controlled.
Sidel , part of the Tetra Laval Group , is one of the world's foremost providers of solutions for packaging liquid foods in plastic packages. The group has 4,300 employees in 25 countries with sales totalling €981.1 million in 2002.