O-I Glass is developing a new manufacturing facility in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Credit: O-I Glass.
The first phase of construction is expected to be completed by mid-2024. Credit: O-I Glass.
The facility will incorporate O-I’s MAGMA technology. Credit: O-I Glass.
Ground-breaking for the new facility took place in April 2023. Credit: O-I Glass.

O-I Glass (O-I), a glass containers manufacturing company based in the US, will build a new sustainable beverage can manufacturing facility in Bowling Green, Kentucky, US.

Announced in July 2022, the project was proposed in response to consumer demand for sustainable packaging. It is part of the company’s expansion strategy to boost growth.

The project is expected to involve an investment of $240m in phases. O-I expects to provide employment opportunities to 240 people through the new facility. The start of production from the plant is targeted for mid-2024.

O-I Glass manufacturing facility details

The new manufacturing plant is expected to expand the company’s glass bottle manufacturing capacity. It will serve a range of consumer beverages, mainly the premium spirits category.

It will be the first purpose-built facility to be equipped with O-I’s glass melting technology, known as Modular Advanced Glass Manufacturing Asset (MAGMA). The technology will support multiple product categories and revolutionise the glass production process.

The new state-of-the-art facility will feature three manufacturing lines, of which the first is expected to begin production in mid-2024. More manufacturing lines will be added in a phased manner.

The production facility will follow sustainable glass manufacturing practices to reduce the environmental footprint. It will be powered by renewable electricity and gas-oxy fuel.

It will be located close to key customers in Bourbon country. The proximity will reduce costs and emissions associated with logistics.

Tax incentives

O-I received preliminary approval from the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) for a ten-year incentive agreement under the Kentucky Business Investment programme in July 2022.

The agreement includes provisions to provide the company with up to $4m in tax incentives. The company is required to meet investment, job creation, and minimum average hourly wage targets to unlock the tax benefits.

O-I is also entitled to up to $1m in tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA), which allows it to claim a refund of Kentucky sales and use tax paid for construction and building materials, and equipment used in research & development and electronic processing.

O-I Glass product portfolio

O-I manufactures glass packaging for food, drugs, chemicals, spirits, alcohol and non-alcoholic beverages. The glass containers are offered in varied sizes and shapes.

The company provides innovative and attractive glass packaging to enhance the brand value of customers and grab customer attention.

The internal design of the glass bottle features an embossing, which is invisible when the bottle is full of beverage and can be seen only when the drink gets consumed.

Its Drinktainer™ product innovation is designed to enhance customer experience while also improving the visibility on the shelf. The glass container has a wide opening that enhances the aroma and retains the freshness and flavour of beverages.

One of the important features of Drinktainer™ is that it is recyclable and comes in single-serve packaging to allow consumers to drink directly from the container.

Sustainability features

O-I partners with customers, suppliers and associations to make glass recycling solutions available in all the communities where it operates.

The company implements strategies such as providing community grants, purchasing recycling infrastructure, and encouraging best practices to enhance glass recycling.

It contributes to the circular economy by recycling the bottles to produce new bottles with recycled content.

The company invested about $6m in glass recycling processing plants across the world over the past three years. It aims to increase the recycled content in its glass packaging to 50% on average by 2030.

O-I is also part of Close the Glass Loop, an industry-wide campaign focused on increasing glass recycling in the EU. The campaign aims to increase the glass collection rate in the EU to 90% by 2030.