SunOpta to increase beverage packaging capacity in US

9 September 2014 (Last Updated September 9th, 2014 18:30)

Canada-based beverage producer SunOpta is planning to expand its aseptic processing and packaging operation in Modesto, California, to cater to increasing consumer demand.

Canada-based beverage producer SunOpta is planning to expand its aseptic processing and packaging operation in Modesto, California, to cater to increasing consumer demand.

The company will install two multi-serve (litre/quart) fillers, which will become operational by the end of 2014 and April 2015, respectively.

SunOpta claims that the expansion will increase its aseptic beverage packaging capacity to more than 500 million packages annually.

The company currently produces soymilk, rice beverage, almond beverage, hemp milk, sunflower milk, ancient grain beverages, coconut-based beverages, nutritional beverages, teas, dairy products and broths, among others.

"Our integrated aseptic platform is currently experiencing tremendous growth."

SunOpta CEO Steve Bromley said: "Our integrated aseptic platform is currently experiencing tremendous growth.

"This expansion will further enable SunOpta to grow in low-acid aseptic categories, including non-dairy, dairy, nutritional beverages, teas, broths and others, serving a wide range of customers and addressing growing consumer demand for 'convenient and on-the-go' healthy food options."

The company is also installing a third processor in Modesto, which will come into production in the first quarter of 2015. The Modesto facility was opened in 2010 and has since undergone several expansions.

According to SunOpta, the facility is strategically paired with the company's aseptic processing and packaging operation in Alexandria, Minnesota.

SunOpta generated $338.3m in revenues during the second quarter ending 5 July 2014, marking an increase of 8.7% on a consolidated basis. The company recorded $16.8m in operating income and $22.7m in EBITDA.