Soft drink maker Coke Canada has announced a $34 million investment in its Lachine bottling facility.
Posted at 2:13 p.m
This investment will be used to install and commission a new production line for beverage cans and 32 packs within a year.
The three existing chains produce beverages in plastic bottles and cans, but are limited to packs of 12 to 24 units.
Meanwhile, 32-can packages for the Quebec and Maritime markets are coming out of its Brampton, Ontario facility.
According to Coke Canada, this additional production capacity at the Lachine plant will serve to “meet growing consumer demand” and “the positive momentum it is seeing in the east of the country, particularly in Quebec.”
This is also the second multi-million dollar investment in the Lachine facility since the American parent company sold Coke Canada to Canadian investors in 2018 for a sum then estimated at $800 million.
In 2020, Coke Canada had invested $5.5 million to upgrade one of the three soft drink production lines at the Lachine facility.
Since then, Coke Canada has been able to produce a range of 120 products in Lachine under the Coca-Cola, Canada Dry, Sprite, Fresca and A&W brands, which are offered in seven container sizes. This includes soft drinks in clear PET plastic bottles, which are easier to recycle into new containers.
The total production volume of soft drinks and other beverages at the Lachine plant is equivalent to 25 million cases (of 24 cans) per year. The addition of a fourth production line could increase this volume to over 30 million cases per year.
In terms of workforce, in the Montreal area, Coke Canada employs 150 people at its Lachine facility and just over 400 people at its sales and distribution center east of the city.
“We are actively hiring to fill several open positions in Lachine and Montreal before adding a fourth production line at the Lachine facility,” said Erika Tremblay, vice president of Eastern Canada at Coke Canada, in an interview with The press.
Coke Canada’s Lachine and Montreal offices operate 24 hours a day, five to six days a week to serve 9,700 commercial offices in the metropolitan area and nearly 20,000 throughout Quebec and the Maritime provinces to Newfoundland.