Page last updated at 16:29 GMT, Friday, 10 July 2009 17:29 UK

Bottling line driven by ale sales

Bottling plant
The bottling plant has secured 29 jobs and created five new posts

A Cornish brewery has started production using a new £750,000 in-house bottling line.

St Austell Brewery said the major investment in the bottling line had been driven by the "soaring demand" for its ales.

Earlier this year the Publican Awards named St Austell Brewery the regional brewer of the year.

The bottling line will have an initial capacity of bottling up to 100,000 bottles a week.

Environmental benefit

The brewery said its long term plan was to offer the bottling facility to other South West drinks producers who currently have their produce bottled outside Cornwall.

Head brewer Roger Ryman it had been a technically challenging project.

"For the team so to see the bottling line up and running on schedule is really exciting," he said.

Bottling line
Despite the recession, sales of Tribute Ale rose by 20% last year

The cost of the line was supported by a £180,000 investment by the South West Regional Development Agency through its Grant for Business Investment programme.

St Austell Brewery said the bottling plant has helped to secure 29 jobs and create five new ones.

It will also bring environmental benefits by cutting thousands of road miles to third-party bottling plants.

Sales of the company's flagship Tribute Ale have risen by 20% in the past 12 months.

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