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The processing company VOG Products from South Tyrol continuously invests in new technologies. The most recent examples are the NFC juice line commissioned this year and a new sterile tank storage system that is almost completed.

Each of the six new tanks is six metres in diameter and 25 metres high, and can contain up to 625,000 litres of apple juice.

New NFC juice line

The raw goods are moving through the new production line for premium juices that features particularly careful dry transport and uses a cutting-edge belt press.

The new intake line at VOG Products can receive up to 150 tonnes of fruit per hour. It transports the fruit dry and not in water. Sails are used to enable the apples to roll along for processing, which results in fewer bruises and damaged spots. Dry transport has one additional advantage: the system consumes much less water.

The main element for juice extraction is the new belt press, which VOG Products uses to produce high-quality premium juice that features a long shelf life and more appealing colouration.

VOG Products ensures that the juice’s quality and turbidity are consistently in line with consumer wishes. In the separator (centrifuge), solid material and starches are removed from the juice with high efficiency and 100 % automation – exactly to the extent that meets the specified quality standards or the customer’s requirements.

Glass container manufacturer Owens-Illinois (O-I) has announced an investment of more than €50m to upgrade its Reims plant in Marne, France.

As part of the modernization, the O-I will add new high-tech equipement, provide new overall layout and additional technical innovations to optimize flexibility, capabilities and energy-efficiency.

O-I Group Southwest Europe country executive Francois Pierrot said: “This is a strategic investment to strengthen our position in the Champagne business. We will be able to serve our customers in the premium segment even better with improved flexibility at the plant and within O-I’s overall manufacturing network in France.”

The scope of the project includes complete renewal of one of the plant’s two furnaces, in addition to all-new industrial equipment on the attached production lines. O-I is planning to complete the upgrade by the middle of this year. The company will also recruit around 30 new employees at Reims facility to further advance its capabilities.

Once the upgrade completes, the Reims facility will hold capacity to manufacture bottles in three colors and full range from 0.2 l to Magnum-size. Reims plant already employees 200 people in various areas such as production, supply and procurement, and maintenance.

Reims facility, which is situated at the center of Champagne vineyard, also provides services to the premium wine customers located in the other regions of France such as Burgundy, Alsace and the Loire Valley.
O-I’s Reims plant manager Dallah Mekki said: “This €50 million project is a major long-term commitment to the Reims area. It represents one of the biggest investments in the region during the last few years, further bolstering O-I’s reputation as a strong player in the region and making the plant an even more attractive employer. In addition, the investment will increase the flexibility and logistics advantages we offer to our Champagne customers.”