Coopers to spend $20 m upgrading brewery

South Australian brewer Coopers has announced a $20 million capital expansion after strong sales in the last half of 2012.

Beer sales were up 13.6 per cent for the six months to December 31 compared to the same period in 2011. Managing director Tim Cooper told Adelaide Now that stocks of Pale Ale came close to drying up over the holiday period.

The range of international beers the company brews, under licences negotiated in 2011 and May 2012 with Sapporo and Carlsberg respectively, also contributed to Coopers’ strong position.

“Our international brands, Sapporo, Carlsberg and Kronenbourg 1664 accounted for nearly half of
this increase,” said Dr Cooper in a statement, regarding the jump in sales in the year’s final half.

"It is very gratifying, considering the whole beer market is going backwards and has been for the past three calendar years now, declining about 4 per cent each calendar year in Australia."

The capital expansion will involve doubling the Regency Park lager cellar’s size, adding a second bottling line and two new fermenters. The new line will produce Coopers’ regular products – sparkling ale, pale ale, stout and mild ale – at a rate of 1,200 bottles a minute. The old line will bottle international beers.



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