The investment intends to expand the capacity of facilities in Belfast and Runcorn to support the growth of the Guinness range


Deirdre Delaney, Operations Manager at Diageo’s Belfast Packaging site. (Credit: Diageo)

UK-based beverage alcohol company Diageo has invested £40.5m to expand its beer packaging facilities in Belfast, Northern Ireland and Runcorn, England.

The investment intends to support the growth of Guinness Draught and Guinness Zero.

Of the total investment, £24.5m will be used to double the production capacity of the facility in Belfast by upgrading the existing warehouse into a new packing line to manufacture 72,000 cans per hour.

The remaining £16m will be invested at the Runcorn plant to modernise the bottling line and boost warehouse capacity to support the growth of Guinness Draught and Guinness Zero product lines.

Diageo said that the upgraded production lines will have more efficiency at both sites to meet the demand for Guinness products from domestic and export markets.

Construction on the expansion projects is set to begin immediately, with both facilities scheduled to be operational by 2023.

Diageo beer operations director Aidan Crowe said: “This expansion is a significant investment in the development of our packaging facilities.

“The projects in Belfast and Runcorn will support our growth ambitions, helping us to deliver end-to-end product innovation, and reinforce our agility to meet demand and provide excellent service to our customers around the world.”

Diageo’s Belfast packaging site operations manager Deirdre Delaney said: “This is an exciting time for our site in Belfast as we invest in our business to support the growth of our business.

“We contribute considerably to the local economy in Belfast and the £24.5m investment will further support our supply chains and local communities.”

Last month, Diageo North America opened a new canning facility in Illinois, US, to boost the development of its ready-to-drink (RTD) portfolio.