September 11, 2005
A State of the Art Brewery
By Jeff Mitchell
Anheuser-Busch Spent $120 Million to Modernize the 700,000-square-foot Brewery. (Photo)
FAIRFIELD - After spending some $120 million on technology and equipment upgrades at its Fairfield plant, Anheuser-Busch officials are pleased to say the taste of their beer won't change one iota.
Nor should it, they say.
But how they ship the popular, sudsy adult beverages they brew into bottles and cans has been revolutionized.
In its first major renovation since the hulking brewery was constructed in 1976, the changes involve the installation of state-of-the-art production lines, utility systems and improvements to its logistics systems, said Kevin Finger, plant general manager.
"It is exciting," Finger said. "The investment the company is making here is a testament to the success of the plant and to our commitment to the Fairfield community. It also speaks to our belief in the talents of the people we have working here."
The renovations began March 2004. Crews installed a giant, floor-to-ceiling clear plastic wall on the main floor of the bottling section and began adding the new, custom-made equipment.
Finger said the plant met every one of its production quotas during the construction period.
"We're very proud of our employees - then while construction was at full-tilt and now, as they continue to familiarize themselves and get more efficient in the use of the new systems," he said.
The modernization effort was largely finished earlier this year, with the final pieces of equipment installed and brought on-line in July, Finger said.
For now, the sound of construction at the 700,000-square-foot brewery is no more. However, Michael Poley, senior resident brewmaster, said one final phase is now being considered by company officials.
If approved, an automated piping system designed to convey the beer from house-size stainless steel brew tanks to the bottling and canning area would be constructed, thereby eliminating the need for brewhouse technicians to lug heavy, long hose lines.
Poley said if approved construction on the $14 million project could start early next year.
Finger and Poley both stressed that all of the renovations were designed with the idea of automating and improving the plant's flexibility and its overall efficiency.
But perhaps more important is the new equipment will usher in tighter quality control.
"Consistency in the taste of our beers is key," Poley said. "Now instead of waiting hours for lab reports, we pretty much know how the beer is doing from moment to moment. When you consider how much beer this brewery alone produces, having that kind of immediate information at your disposal is not a small thing."
Reach Jeff Mitchell at 427-6977 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
A state of the art brewery
Fairfield brewery at a glance
Key executives: Kevin Finger, plant manager; Michael Poley, resident brewmaster
Operations: Three shifts, 24 hours a day
Plant payroll: $43.4 million
Beer brands produced: Budweiser, Bud Light, Busch, Busch Light and Natural Light
Plant size: 700,000 square feet
Production volume: 4.4 million barrels a year (equates to 136 million gallons)
Source: Anheuser-Busch, Inc.
Copyright Daily Republic. All rights reserved.
- ► 2007 (799)
- ► 2006 (662)
- VA hastens Dixon veterans cemetery construction
- Solano's jobless matches national average
- Solano County get Chinese Sister City - Ji'an
- Solano County gets sister city in China
- Vallejo Waterfront deal OK'd
- Vallejo schools bump up its testing scores
- Last-minute Negotiations Key to Deal for Waterfron...
- The Vacaville Planning Commission is expected to v...
- A white tablecloth Italian restaurant and lounge w...
- A glimpse at Vallejo's waterfront future
- Vacaville schools do well with state targets
- Solano County Supervisors consider new English Hil...
- City of Dixon Planners, Council to digest report o...
- Novartis to Buy Rest of Chiron for $5.1B
- Chiron gets $62M deal for bird flu vaccine stockpi...
- Solano County seeking its foothold on the wine ind...
- Arming for potential disaster in Vacaville
- Calif. new-home building set for banner year -repo...
- VA hastens veterans cemetery construction near Dix...
- Traffic fears mar Solano County fairgrounds plan
- Sacramento in top 50 of logistics-friendly cities
- Developers seeking out shut-down military base in ...
- Solano County Board of Supervisors and delegates f...
- The unemployment rate in Solano County was down to...
- Chiron expects market share boost
- Office space leases slowing in Silicon Valley
- Vallejo Waterfront developer waits for OK from cou...
- Fairfield City staffbegins study to look at motel ...
- G V Cellars to debut in Green Valley
- Smallest city in Solano, Rio Vista is reshaping ma...
- California lost jobs in September - The Sacramento...
- Dr. Gunnar Weikert, chairman of Inventages Venture...
- The Sonoma County Economic Development Board today...
- the Sacramento region should grow by almost 370,00...
- Developers asking voters to open land for housing ...
- 11 Bay Area School Districts Asking Voters for $1...
- Construction underway for Venture Commerce Center ...
- Holiday Inn Sale Becomes Official
- High Rise Work OK'd
- Downtown Mall Gets Fresh Look
- Study Predicts Economic Growth in Fairfield
- Benicia Business Park Expansion Progressing
- Ground Broken for New Library
- County Called One of the Nation's '100 Best Commun...
- Changes for Collinsville?
- Suisun's Newest Neighborhood
- Building a Village
- Study: Vallejo Area to Lead Region's Economic Grow...
- Napa-Solano Trail Dedication this Weekend
- City OKs Plan for Downtown
- Council Approves Villages Project
- PG&E Gets OK to Discount Rates to Keep Businesses ...
- Second Street Starts
- Mills Corp., Sierra Club Present Separate Plans fo...
- Milk Farm Vision Vies on Reality
- Fairfield-Suisun District Encouraging National Cer...
- Healthy Local Job Market Predicted
- A State of the Art Brewery
- Council to Discuss Plans for Fairfield/Vacaville T...
- Leasing Picks up For Benicia Industrial Condos
- Genentech profits surge 56 percent
- Big changes are being planned for the northern ”ga...
- Job growth will accelerate the Bay Area's commerci...
- Fairfield's Urban Infill
- 'Bold Plan' for Revitalization
- T.G.I. Friday's and BJ's Restaurant and Brewhouse ...
- Gas Crunch a Selling Point for housing development...
- Indirectly, High School Project Begins
- Housing Still Hot
- Article Last Updated: Friday, Aug 26, 2005 - 10:57...
- Air Expo Returns to Travis in October
- Business Owners Get Chance to Buy Offices
- Fairfield's Next Big Housing Project on the Way
- Nut Tree's New Era Begins
- Vacaville Officials, Project Managers Break Ground...
- Rebirth of a Landmark: Nut Tree to be Revived
- Ceremony to Mark New Nut Tree's Start
- Vacaville May Get New Furniture Store
- Local After School Programs Get State Grant
- Aiming for a Wonderful Life
- Genentech Construction Schedule Hits it Mark
- Firm Marks Anniversary
- Aerial Pesticides Not Used in Solano Due to Low Th...
- STARS on the Rise
- New Highway 37 Debuts Today
- Own your own business
- Meyer Adding 2 Warehouses to Facility
- Now and the Future
- Solano Exhibit Wins Award at State Fair
- STAR Scores Show Improvement Both Locally, Statewi...
- Sutter Buys Land to Expand Medical Facility
- The Growing Niche of City Development
- Land Trust Gets Funds for Preservation
- Timing is Everything
- The New Highway 37: 50 Years in the Making
- Racetrack Report Set for Release
- Region's Firms in Upbeat Mood
- Bank Sells Lagoon Valley Parcel for $6.6 Million
- M.I. May Get Shuttle Buses to Ferry Dock
- ▼ October (125)
- ► 2004 (125)