After years of investment and renovation, a Coca-Cola bottling plant in the Dutch town of Dongen is ready for the future. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte officially reopened the new-and-improved plant on June 27 during a festive celebration attended by Coca-Cola stakeholders, customers, employees and fans.

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Prime Minister Mark Rutte tours the state-of- the-art plant in Dongen.

Coca-Cola opened its doors to the public for one time only to offer a unique glimpse at how Coca-Cola beverages are produced in the Netherlands. 

Collecting Coca-Cola Cans For 35 Years

“This is an amazing oppurtunity, the visit to the plant makes my heart race,” said Marijke Klijn Velderman, one of approximately 5,000 consumers who attended the event. Her daughter, Nienke, added: “We think Coca-Cola is a beautiful brand. My mother has been collecting Coca-Cola cans from all over the world for 35 years, and now they are on display in my room. This visit was loads of fun!”

Marijke & Nienke

'This is an amazing opportunity... the visit to the plant makes my heart race!'

A Multinational With Local Roots

Visitors gathered around a large square set up with food trucks and fun activities. “It’s so good to see all these excited Coca-Cola fans and to show them the work we do in the plant," said Richard Schlasberg, country manager, The Coca-Cola Company. "Most people are surprised to find out how ‘Dutch’ our products actually are. Coca-Cola has been active in the Netherlands since 1928, and the plant in Dongen produces 85 percent of all drinks we sell here... production made possible by local employees and local ingredients. We are of course a multinational, but with local roots.”

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Millions of Cans and Bottles

The factory continued to produce various beverages throughout the day, which meant fans saw 120,000 cans, 100,000 PET bottles and 55,000 glass bottles go by in an hour. The plant fills 2.5 million PET bottles with Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola Light, Coca-Cola Zero and Coca-Cola Life every week.

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This silhouette consists of 3,730 Coca-Cola bottles.

Ready for the Future

The plant was built in 1957 and has undergone extensive renovation over the years. Coca-Cola has invested 245 million euros since 2000, and 90 million euros in the last three years alone. Highlights of the renovation include:

Daylight and LED Lighting

A new roof maximizes the building's natural light. Next-generation LED lights were installed in the production hall and distribution center, contributing to energy savings of 800 MWh per year, or the average energy consumption of more than 200 Dutch households.

15 Glass Bottles per Second

A new glass line constructed in 2015 processes more than 15 glass bottles per second. This line can sort, wash and fill up to 55,000 glass bottles per hour. The sustainable rinsing machine uses 50 percent less water to clean bottles and is also better insulated, which cuts energy loss in the form of steam by thirty percent. Coca-Cola has invested 10 million euros in its new glass line and the associated renovations and modifications.

Fully Automated Warehouse

A fully automated warehouse can house 36,600 pallets. Coca-Cola has invested 20 million euros in the high-rise system, which automatically stores pallets of bottles and cans and prepares them for transport. This system also generates 10 to 20 percent of the facility's energy.

Greener Fleet

Every day, 150 trucks leave the Dongen factory to deliver products to customers. Approximately 80 percent of these trucks leave the plant fully loaded within an hour. A fleet of11 extra-long eco-combi trucks with 38 percent more load capacity allows the plant to transport more pallets per trip and reduce CO2 output by 22 percent.