The Market is booming. Soft drinks with natural exotic-fruit flavors are consumed in over 50 countries and especially popular in Europe. Kassatly Chtaura exports 35 percent of its Freez Mix to European countries. To better develop this market, Kassatly Chtaura established a subsidiary, Boutique Beverages Bottling International, in Cyprus in 2021. Here, a new 21,000-square-meter factory is being built on a 54,000 square meter plot, which will feature a 5,000-square-meter bottling hall. As in its existing factory in Lebanon, Kassatly Chtaura is putting a strong emphasis on sustainability at its Cyprus plant, which will include a one-megawatt solar installation to cover the plant’s growing energy needs and a fully automated waste water treatment system.
Strawberry, lemon-ginger, and piña colada are just three of the many flavors of Freez Mix, a wildly popular carbonated soft drink. The Lebanese company Kassatly Chtaura began producing it in 2001 and now plans to really ramp up production.
New factory, long-standing partnership
The first beverages will be produced and filled here in mid-2023. And just like the Beirut site, all of the filling technology will come from Krones. “We are very pleased to be outfitting this new factory with our technology,” says Thomas Butscher, project manager for Krones. The project is further proof of the trust shared by the two companies. Kassatly Chtaura has been a Krones customer for over 20 years, and the business partners have developed a strong bond in that time. “Our ongoing partnership with Krones is a proof of our strong belief in the efficiency and durability of their machines, their reliability and outstanding after sales service”, says Nayef Kassatly, CEO of Kassatly Chtaura. He compares the cooperation with a marriage, in which also challenges were successfully overcome together. The drinks-maker appreciates the top-quality German technology and Krones’ dependability – from the line’s earliest design stages to after-sales service. “We’re always available and support our customers in every situation,” says Wolfgang Schmitt, Head of Sales Near East at Krones.
Our ongoing partnership with Krones is a proof of our strong belief in the efficiency and durability of their machines, their reliability and outstanding after sales service. Nayef KassatlyCEO of Kassatly Chtaura
Great taste in unique bottles
For the new factory, Krones is supplying two lines: a non-returnable-glass line and a combined glass line that can fill Freez Mix into both bottles and cans. The two lines are set up identically to those in the Lebanon plant (see box). Krones also delivered a dry end that takes care of packing and palletizing tasks for the bottle tinting process. What makes Freez Mix unique is not only its flavor variety but also the fact that its bottles are colored to match the flavors. So, for example, the glass bottle for the piña-colada flavored soft drink is tinted yellow while the strawberry one is pink. This stand-out design also contributes to Freez Mix’s popularity.
The process of tinting the bottles takes place upstream of filling. For it, Krones palletizing technology is linked to the warehouse to bring the pallets of bulk glass up from the basement. The empty, transparent glass bottles are then fed into the tinting unit and mapped to the respective product. After tinting, the bottles are repalletized. It is only after they are tinted that they are filled on one of the new lines. The new factory will begin operations in mid-2023 – and Freez Mix will bring even more refreshment to Europe.