The Coca-Cola Company and Swire Group recently celebrated the opening of a new world-class production plant in Yunnan, the largest of its kind south of the Yangtze River in China. The facility received a gold certification of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

James Quincey, president and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, and Merlin Swire, CEO of John Swire & Sons Limited, joined representatives from local government at the plant inauguration ceremony on June 15. Quincey said the investment marks another example of the Coca-Cola system’s commitment to investing and growing in China.

“Coca-Cola has been part of the tremendous changes in China since the opening of the market in 1979,” Quincey added. “We started our business in China with a single brand, and we’ve gone on to build a portfolio of more than 20 brands in the market today. The new Yunnan plant marks a milestone in celebrating the upcoming 40th anniversary of Coca-Cola's return to China. Together with our bottling partners, we offer a growing portfolio to Chinese consumers, in addition to playing an important role in the communities where we operate.”

Swire Coca-Cola Beverages Yunnan Limited decided to replace its previous production facility with a much larger one to meet the needs of the fast-growing market.

“Swire has significantly increased investment in our global Coca-Cola bottling business in recent years, and this new bottling plant is a good example of that,” Swire said. “The increased capacity will help us satisfy millions of consumers and continue to drive sustainable growth throughout Yunnan.”

The design and construction of the new Yunnan plant followed LEED standards. For example, photovoltaic power generators are located on the roof of the main building. To reduce summer heat and save energy, the plant uses natural lighting, intelligent lighting systems, two-way heat-protective glass and highly reflective materials that cover 75% of the roof.

Additionally, a 600-cubic-meter rainwater collection facility for irrigation and street cleaning helps conserve water. The water treatment system can handle more than 3.1 million liters each day to meet national discharge standards. Some treated water is reused for irrigation and restrooms in the plant.